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Hikes on the Appalachian Trail

No Time? Try these 12 Easy Section hikes of the Appalachian Trail

By Sometime Traveller

Hey there, fellow hiking enthusiasts and trailblazers! So, you’ve been itching to tackle the grand Appalachian Trail but find yourself short on months to commit to a thru-hike? No worries! We’ve got you covered with a handy guide to experiencing the marvels of the Appalachian Trail through 12 exhilarating section hikes.

Explore 12 Simple Appalachian Trail Section Hikes

Here are 12 Easy Appalachian Trail Section Hikes to Explore

1. Get Set, Go! Springer Mountain, Georgia (75 miles in eight days)

While not as hyped as other sections, this southern gem boasts mountain laurel forests, grassy peaks, and serene oak-laden valleys. It’s the perfect starting point for those seeking a taste of the Trail’s southern delights.

2. Nantahala Mountains, North Carolina (29 miles in three days)

Explore fire tower views and the solitude of Nantahala Gorge, Little Tennessee River Valley, and Fontana Lake. You might even spot our SAWS Wilderness Conservation Corps’ handiwork!

3. Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee (four days)

The most visited national park in the U.S., offering stunning vistas, icy swimholes, and a trek to Clingman’s Dome. Pack your rain gear; you might encounter some wild weather!

4. Iron Mountain Gap to Cross Mountain, Tennessee (17 miles overnight)

Navigate the wild Cherokee National Forest, passing apple orchards and staying at the highest elevation shelter on the Trail.

5. Mau-Har Loop, Virginia (14 miles overnight)

Prepare for rocky terrain and waterfalls, but it’s worth it for the stunning views and serene camping spots by the stream.

6. Shenandoah National Park, Virginia (100 miles in ten days)

Easy, breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah Valley with plenty of wildlife sightings.

7. Blue Mountains, Pennsylvania (40 miles in four days)

Marvel at Pennsylvania’s farm landscapes, visit Hawk Mountain for raptors’ migration, and explore designated shelters and campsites along the way.

8. Delaware River, New Jersey/Pennsylvania (15.9 miles in two days)

Experience panoramic views and a slice of “trail magic” in June when thru-hikers share their incredible stories.

9. Anthony’s Nose, New York (2.2 miles round-trip)

A short, steep climb rewarding you with stunning views, and a side trip option to see the NYC skyline from afar.

10. Taconic Highlands, Massachusetts (16.9 miles in two days)

Explore old-growth forests, waterfalls, and Mount Everett with camping options at designated shelters or areas.

11. Presidential Range, New Hampshire (88 miles in nine days)

Prepare for a challenging yet stunning journey through White Mountain National Forest with epic views of Mount Moosilauke and more.

12. Best 30 of the 100-mile Wilderness, Maine (29.9 miles in three days)

Embark on this stretch for Lower Wilson Falls, panoramic views, and the famed 100-Mile Wilderness experience.

Related Visual Stories: 9 Amazing Animals You Can Encounter on the Appalachian Trail

So, there you have it—12 epic sections of the Appalachian Trail to explore at your own pace! Whether you’ve got a few days or a couple of weeks to spare, these hikes promise adventure, breathtaking scenery, and unforgettable experiences. Lace up your boots and hit the trail; your Appalachian escapade awaits!

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