Almost nothing can beat the experience of a fall hike. It offers all the perfect conditions for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts to explore the beauty of nature. The temperature is indeed suitable for excursions. After experiencing the heat waves of summer, fall offers a refreshing feel. Not only that, the scenery during this time is genuinely marvelous.
But if you are looking where are the places to have a fall hike, then you should not look any further! The United States of America is already a frontier for that. This vast country has states that offer myriads of hiking destinations. When fall takes place, the wildlife of the US becomes a wonderland that anyone should never miss out.
More importantly, all trails on this list of fall hikes will allow you to go kayaking as well (although some trails will be more suitable for this than others). What better way to work some variation into your fall hike than hitting the water for a bit? If you’re going to enjoy nature, you might as well do it right. Why would you only want to be passing the boulders and trees, when you can also go say hi to the local fish folk. Spending some time on the water will have you feeling reborn.
If you are planning to have your first kayaking fall hike experience in the US, better start packing the things in your kayaking checklist. You should prepare yourself so that you will be able to fully enjoy the natural wonders that this country has to offer.
Check the following fall hike destinations that you should visit in the United States!
1. Old Rag Mountain – Virginia
If you are in Virginia, you need to visit the Shenandoah National Park. This particular area is truly mesmerizing. It is a treasure trove for various forestry and natural landscapes. Every green and golden leaves are sprawling splendidly here during the fall, which makes it one of the most sought destinations in the US.
There are a lot of hiking sites in the vast Shenandoah National Park. But if you want the best right from the start, you should set your foot in the Old Rag Mountain. The latter is 3,284 feet mountain range that spans in Sperryville in Madison Country. However, the peak is still located at the heart of the National Park. Unlike other mountains, this one has an exposed summit, which makes it a favorite choice for hikers that love challenges.
However, the entire mountain is blanketed with greeneries. In autumn, these leaves and grasses turn into striking orange to golden yellow, which makes Old Rag a glorious spectacle to behold. You should really check this one out.
2. Maroon Bells – Colorado
All parts of the Maroon Bells are truly picturesque. It is one of the reasons why this natural scenery in Colorado is a favorite destination of may locals and tourists alike. In fact, there are claims that Maroon Bells is one of the most photographed places in the state. But if I were, you shouldn’t settle on photos. You need to see this place eye to eye, especially during autumn.
Maroon Bells is a collection of peaks whose height reaches up to 14,000 feet. It is truly breathtaking to see these mountains. However, things are much better if you can hike in the trails of this giant. There are photographic scenes that you can take on the White River National Forest. Wildflower fields and the beautiful aspen trees that display their otherworldly vibrance on fall.
Aside from the peaks, Maroon Bells also offers a close-up view to its serene and pristine lake. There is a panorama that you will never get used to here. Once you have experienced hiking in Maroon Bells, you will never forget it at all.
3. Cornish Estate Trail – New York
Let’s visit New York and see the wonders of the Cornish Estate. This place is an excellent destination for hikers and outdoor goers all-year round. It offers a refreshing and challenging terrain that can stimulate your soul. But once the fall comes in, the Cornish Estate Trail becomes a far better venue for hiking.
Cornish Estate is a 1.8-mile trail that offers alluring scenes throughout its span. It is located within the Hudson Highlands State Park. This place will never stop in making your jaws drop. Fortunately, reaching it will not require a technical hike. Among all the trails and hikes in the park, it is touted that the Cornish State trail is the easiest to overcome. In fact, even amateurs can complete this route!
4. Bishop Creek Canyon – California
Inyo County in California is hiding some of the most beautiful destinations in the United States. It also houses one of the finest destinations where you can do memorable fall hikes. Specifically, I am talking about the Bishop Creek Canyon.
The canyon is placed adjacent to the 10-mile Bishop Creek stream, which is the biggest tributary of the gargantuan Owens River. In fact, there are five hydroelectric plants that operate thanks to this stream.
Meanwhile, the Bishop Creek Canyon gives you can inject you with a fantastic sense of thrill and bewilderment. During autumn, the place harmonizes with the Bishop Creek stream–creating a synchronized spectacle that is worthy to behold. Hiking in the canyon will allow you to take a glimpse of this panoramic wonder. The rocky terrain is also greeted with wildflowers, fresh air, and exotic wildlife. The South Lake can also be seen from the elevations of the canyon. You can bring your touring kayak here!
5. May Lake Hike – California
Yosemite National Park is one of the natural wonders that the United States can offer. It symbolizes the magnitude and grandeur of Earth. The beauty of this place is a composition of different elements. It is not only the landscape and valleys that make Yosemite outstanding. The spectacle encompasses the air and the water bodies that are within it.
Yosemite is also the home of the seemingly recluse May Lake. It is located in the elevation of 10,000-foot of Mount Hoffman. For you to be able to see the inspiring beauty of this lake, you need to grind your feet. It is necessary that you are well prepared in traversing the trail. Some hikers rate this hike as a fairly technical. But overall, anyone can conquer it.
Hiking May Like in fall is an adventure that you should try. During this season, the forests that surround the lake blankets it with picturesque and seemingly surreal spectacle. It is breath-taking, but at the same time, peaceful.
6. Jordan Pond Full Loop – Maine
When you are in the North Atlantic Coast, Acadia National Park is worth venturing. The latter is touted as the Crown Jewel of the region as it contains the tallest rocky headlands in the United States. It has an abundance of varying diversity. It provides a refreshing experience, especially those who want to try a fall hike here.
There are seven peaks that you can explore here. Each of them does not go below 1,000 feet. And among the miles and miles of hiking trails, you should check out the Jordan Pond Full Loop Trail. This one is a 3.4-mile trail that encircles within the national park. Specifically, it is nearby the Mount Desert, which makes an idyllic spot for fall and summer hike.
Fortunately, the Jordan Pond Full Loop is suitable for any skill level. Whether you are an amateur or professional, this trail will have something to offer.
7. Mount Baker – Washington
Among the peaks and mountains that sprawl in the United States, Mount Baker is one of those few that has its share of myths. The native name of Mount Baker is Kulshan or Koma Kulshan–a name of a woman who has supposedly secluded herself due to jealousy. Over time, she grew to marvelous heights and became one of the greatest land elevations in the state of Washington.
Mount Baker serves as a division of two different worlds. On the peak, Mount Baker features snow caps and rocky edges. On its ridgeline, you can witness a trove of wildflowers such as bistort, aster, and arnica.
Of course, hiking Mount Baker is difficult. But things are a lot easier if you will pass the Skyline Divide trail. The latter is a 6,000-foot extension on the north of the Mount Baker. During fall and summer, this trail becomes a paradise studded with unparalleled views. It is almost close to divine.
8. Park City – Utah
Park City is a beautiful destination for a fall hike. It has a luscious scenery and wildlife that you can see without travelling too far. Despite being overwhelmed by mountain bikers, there is still one trail where only foot-hiking is allowed. Specifically, that’s the Silver Lake Trail. Compared to the paths for wheels, the Silver Lake Trail is sure to provide tranquillity to the passers.
The 0.9-mile trail will lead you to scenic spots and destinations. While on this route, you can pass the Bald Mountain where an array of wildflowers and grasses are waiting for you. You can also see the Jordanelle Reservoir here. Be careful though, as there are some strayed old mining tools in the way.
9. Denali National Park – Alaska
Alaska might be the last place that you think of when it comes to fall hike destination. But one should know that it is the home of unadulterated wildlife and scenic landscapes. Among them, the Denali National Park simply stands out. The latter is one of the top tourists’ destinations in Alaska. It a six-million-acre of protected land that houses expansive snowy mountains and alpine tundra.
Of course, while you are here, you can also see the tallest peak in North America, which is Denali. There are wild animals that are roaming in this area that are not fenced. Fortunately, these creatures are always on the roll when autumn, so there’s a good chance that you can see them on your hike!
10. Hidden Falls Trail – Wyoming
Words cannot justify the beauty of the Grand Teton National Park. It is one of the most beautiful parks that the United States has to offer, and this claim is indeed credible. You can visit and hike this area all year round. There are numerous trails that you can take here, so your options are virtually limitless here.
However, the Hidden Falls Trail is arguably the most popular in the Grand Teton National Park. It is near the Jenny Lake that showcases a spectacular and free-fall Hidden Falls cascade. It is accessible through boating, but hikers would prefer reaching this place by foot. However, it is in autumn and summer when taking this trail is the most suitable.
What’s your favorite fall hiking trail here? Comment your answers below!