Let’s go walking across America this fall. From New Hampshire on the north east coast to Sherman Peak: Bear River Range, Idaho on the west we’ve mapped out some of the most beautiful autumn trails across the US.
1. New Hampshire has to be the most picturesque state in the US. Filled with postcard perfect scenery it’s no surprise then that finding the most beautiful hiking trail wasn’t hard.
This trail is 1.3 miles long and leads to a spectacular view of the Presidential Range at an elevation of 1000 feet. Considered to be a reasonable slog, this trail will take the average walker around 90 minutes to complete with a myriad of autumn colors along the way.
2. Heading south west along the interstate 93 takes you to Giant Ledge, Slide Mt. Wilderness which is nestled in the heart of New York (the state). The hike is located near the Town of Shandaken in Ulster County and promises awe inspiring views of the Catskill Mountains. This is a brief (2.7 miles) rocky climb that does have its steep moments. At 3200 feet the views are far simply out of this world.
3. From here, if you still have those travel bugs for the autumn spread then head further south. The historic Pine Creek Rail Trail is a gem of the Pine Creek Gorge and offers a tremendous way to view fall foliage. The trailhead can be accessed from route 287, Wellsboro with co-ordinates 41.788221°N 77.308019°W. Make sure to bring your waterproof hiking GPS, so you don’t get lost.
4. Travelling west for 270 miles along interstate 80 you’ll find yourself in Ohio where the north eastern territories has a unique autumn display just waiting to be explored at Nelson-Kennedy Ledges State Park (Portage County). Here you will find three miles or more of stunning autumn colors with really interesting and bizarre rock formations. This hike is for the more experienced hiker.
5. Our next stop across America’s most beautiful fall hiking haunts is in the state of Kentucky. Travel south through Cincinnati along the R75 straight into Lexington and some distance to the stunning Cumberland Falls State Resort Park. Located near Corbin, Kentucky this resort park has over twelve (12) hikes to choose from. Our particular favorite is the easy going Cumberland River trail. This 5 mile hike follows the river upstream for two miles and includes a trek along the old logging road.
6. Heading north-west along the interstate 74 we thought we’d take you to Illinois’ White Pines Forest State Park, a stunning hikers’ destination for beautiful fall foliage. There are a wide variety of walking trails to suite all ages and fitness levels. Included are beautiful vine covered limestone formations and the mesmerizing swoosh of a plethora of pines in the fresh breeze. The trials are user-friendly with colour coded markers to keep you on trek so to speak.
7. To the north of Illinois is the wonderfully picturesque state of Iowa and here at the Yellow River State Forest. Perhaps our least autumn-inspired pick, but we felt it offered a unique experience with its spectacular river walks not to include it. There is no shortage of trail with a selection of 32 miles and various elevations this destination is an instant chillax.
8. From here we travel due west to the state of Nebraska. The hidden lake walking trail near down town Omaha is a wonderful, 3.4-mile hike that bends ever so slightly around the most stunning translucent pools of water (lakes really) and past a quaint deserted trading post. There’s a waterfall along the way and hikers are encouraged to bring binoculars to savor this display of falling water. We recommend wearing your waterproof hiking boots and good waterproof hiking pants!
9. Our penultimate destination of pure autumn hiking bliss is Wyoming’s summit, Laramie Peak in Medicine Bow National Forest. Laramie Peak is a 10,272-foot mound and is the biggest in the in the Wyoming section of the range. This isn’t the most challenging of our hikes so relax and enjoy the moderate climb (elevation of 2700 ft.). The beauty of it will astound you, with its densely clustered pine trees and those spectacular orange and red hues of the aspens’ during autumn. The 9-10 mile trail is in great shape with excellent camping facilities nearby.
10. Although we haven’t quite reached the western seaboard we think you won’t want to leave our last spot anyway. We guarantee you will be tempted to kick in the 9-5 gig and retire on the spot.
Our final autumn inspired hiking expedition is none other than the spectacular Sherman peak hike a part of the Bear River Range in Idaho.
If you’re looking for a brilliant and far reaching spread of autumn colors then Sherman peak hike is for you. After parking your car, you will walk a moderately challenging 3.5 mile trail to the summit of Sherman peak and we won’t say anything more because words simply can’t describe what you will see…
What are your favorite fall hikes? Let us know in the comments!
Image credits: bluepointcom; Ian Sane; Sarath Kuchi; Randy Lemoine; b k; finchlake2000; Bhanu Tadinada; Hop Phan; Malcolm Carlaw; all @flickr.com (CC BY 2.0)