What Is The Appalachian Trail?

How well do you know the Appalachian Trail? The trail is a nearly 2,200 mile hiking trail through the Appalachian Mountain Range in the Eastern United States. It is not only the most popular trail to hike in the US but is the longest “hiking only” trail that spans across 14 states.

Appalachian Trail

What States Does The Appalachian Trail Go Through?

2. North Carolina
3. Tennessee
4. Virginia
5. West Virginia
6. Maryland
7. Pennsylvania
8. New Jersey
9. New York
10. Connecticut
11. Massachusetts
12. Vermont
13. New Hampshire
14. Maine


Glory and Fame 

Less than 22,000 people have completed a successful thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. One of the youngest people to hike the full 2,200 mile hike is no other than 5 year old Harvey Sutton also known as “Little Man”. Harvey hiked the trail with both of his Parents Josh and Cassie Sutton starting in January 2021 and completing the trek in August. The photo above was taken atop Mount Katahdin where Harvey did his victory pose. Harvey was only 4 years old when he started the hike from Georgia to Maine turning 5 in the last week of the hike in Maine. This goal is once in a lifetime and an amazing feat for such a youngster and Harvey says “ I would do it again, I like it so much”. This has countless parents surprised at how well he did for his age. But this goes to show if you set your mind to something you can achieve it! 

The Wild and Civilization All in One

On average, the trail crosses a road every four miles. The mountains are bustling with many small communities but also you will find something a little more magical. Wild ponies! The wild ponies of Virginia, these ponies are descended from a domesticated breed that has re-adapted to being in the wild. They have roamed the area of Grayson Highlands Stake Park since 1975 but originated and were brought over from the Assateague Island off the coast of Maryland that they grazed since the 1600’s.

There are 50 Communities along the Appalachian Trail bustling with life, amazing views and good places to eat and take a rest.

Places worth seeing along the Appalachian Trail:

1. Blairsville, GA: 

This town is picturesque. Known for their pristine bodies of water including their 18 Acre Lake Winfield Scott and a 4,180 acre Lake Nottely. The green valley’s surrounding the town are breathtaking and if you are hungry check out delicious eateries you can find downtown.

2. Hot Springs, NC:

Located in the mountains of Western North Carolina along the banks of Spring Creek and the French Broad River. This town was first discovered in 1778 and since has built up such a rich history. There is a 100+ degree mineral water spring reported to have healing properties. If you pass through this town definitely go check out The Hot Springs Resort & Spa and relax!

3. Roan Mountain, TN:

The trail climbs through the clouds to over 6,000 feet through Carter County. The area offers boating, fishing, hiking and camping. Catch a breather and enjoy the sites at the Roan Mountain State Park. Visitors can also take in the traditional cuisine, musicians and handmade crafts of the Souther Appalachian.

4. Waynesboro, VA

This town houses many festivals throughout the year. Historic downtown features the Wayne Theatre which opened in 1926 described as “the finest theatre in the Shenandoah Valley”. There are also tons of quaint Bed & Breakfast spots to stay and delicious local eateries that are to die for.

5. Harper's Ferry, W. VA:

Known as the most scenic and historic town anywhere in America. Home to the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park with phenomenal views. The area has a fascinating Civil War, African American and Lewis and Clark Expedition History. 

A Scenic View with Skyline Drive

The winding road through Shenandoah National Park travels right along the original path of the Appalachian Trail. The trail has been recreated and relocated since being founded in 1925. The road spans 105 miles with winding road and amazing views. The original idea for the road was proposed in 1931, just six years before the completion of the trail and the park was then dedicated the President Franklin D Roosevelt on 1936.

So there you have it. The Appalachian Trail is one of the most fascinating treks you can take with amazing site and places to stop along the way. Thousands of hikers attempt the thru-hike yearly and few make it the whole way. We created our Appalachian Trail Panoramic map to honor the amazing history behind the trail and all the hikers who take the journey. 


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