For me there is no better time to go hiking than when fall hits and the leaves begin to change color. As the seasons change so too do many of the best hiking routes in the US and in truth there are some which only appear once fall begins. Each year my friends and I love nothing more than wrapping up with a warm jacket, picking up the best GPS trackers that we can find and heading out into nature. I wanted to talk through my 5 favorite routes in the hope of inspiring you to get out and breathe in that glorious and fresh fall air. Without further ado then, here are my top 5.
We often think of Aspen as being a perfect place to go skiing but when the fall comes and the snow dissipates, Aspen presents itself as a fine location to watch the trees change color and sicker this beautiful part of Colorado. The Maroon Bells trail is my preferred favorite but get there early to avoid any crowds.
June Lake California
California may be a sunny all year round but if you are smart you can still experience the very best that fall has to offer here. The Sierra Mountains are beautiful to hike at any time the year but my personal favorite is during fall, when the scenery becomes a beautiful combination of jagged rocks with beautiful colors poking up from in between the crags.
The Stowe trail in Vermont is very short at just 2,8 miles yet despite its short distance it is a fair old slog. The trail is very steep as it leads up to the summit, which is where all of your hard work will pay off. At the top of the trail you will be presented with stunning fall views across what seems like the whole state, with some of the most fascinating foliage that you are likely to see.
The Wildwood Trail in Portland is a great place to hike throughout the year but it really comes alive in the fall months. The entire trail is actually 30 miles so you may want to take a tent with you if you plan to complete the whole thing. Alternatively you could take the smaller four mile hike, which takes you through the Japanese garden and the sequoia grove, much more manageable and still just as beautiful.
The trail that I would recommend here in Idaho is the Mickinick Trail, which takes you through the Idaho Panhandle National Forest. Beginners may struggle with this one but moderate hikers and above can enjoy this 7 mile trail which climbs a huge 2,000 feet. As you wind up the steep incline you’ll see the whole array of fall colors, and as you get to the top you may even get to see a smattering of snow.
Where are your favorite places to hike in the fall? Let us know in the comments below.