The Appalachian Trail is the longest hiking-only footpath in the world. It’s one of America’s most iconic trails, travelling nearly 2,200 miles between Georgia and Maine. Crossing 14 states, 6 national parks and 8 national forests, the terrain is hard work. Once completed, AT thru-hikers will have climbed the elevation of Mount Everest 16 times.
The AT sees upwards of 3 million visitors every year, but only a fraction of those attempt to hike the whole length, and only a fraction of those ever succeed!
SOUTH WEST COAST PATH
The South West Coast Path is a National Trail and the longest way-marked footpath in England. At 630 miles it takes hikers from Minehead in Somerset around the undulating coasts of Devon and Cornwall, onto the well-earned finish point of Poole Harbour in Dorset.
It’s a breathtaking route with the sea as a near-constant partner. Across moorland, through quaint fishing villages and using ferries and fording rivers; the ups and downs are tough but the rewards are so beautifully worth it.
Te Araroa is a 1,864 mile footpath stretching from one end of New Zealand to the other. Te Araroa means ‘the long path’ and so it is, starting in Cape Reinga at the top of the North Island, and ending in Bluff, at the foot of the South Island.
The TA is a relatively new trail; a mix of old hiking routes and new pathways, tied together with road walks. It’s a serious and breathtakingly beautiful challenge over hugely varying terrain, with hikers facing extended beach walks, forests, rivers and mountains, amidst highly unpredictable weather.
Pacific Crest Trail
The Pacific Crest Trail is a 2,650 mile long National Scenic Trail in the USA open to travel for hikers and those on horseback. It’s one of the USA’s Big Three, making up a third of the famed ‘Triple Crown of Hiking’.
Stretching from Mexico in the south to the Canadian border in the north, the trail cuts through the states of California, Oregon and Washington. With a wide range of terrain, this trail veers into extremes – heat and drought in the deserts, to snow and ice in the High Sierras and deep forest in between.