Hike the North Country National Scenic Trail

posted on July 28, 2014

The North Country National Scenic Trail links scenic, cultural and historic areas through seven states from New York to North Dakota. For 4,600 miles it winds through hundreds of state parks and national forests with a variety of hikes from easy day trips to challenging treks.

From the Eastern trailhead on the shore of Lake Champlain in upstate New York, hikers travel more than 1,000 miles on newer trails, abandoned railroad beds and canal towpaths and detours through state parks and forests. Tall cherry trees dominate the Pennsylvania forests, but as hikers head west into Ohio they'll experience hills and general flatland through rural areas. Michigan's Upper Peninsula boasts large lakes, old-growth forests, and the peaceful shores of Lake Superior.

Wisconsin contains the most mileage on the NCT with a variety of terrain, magnificent waterfalls, and ancient mountain ranges. Native American historic sites and iron mining remnants mark the trail experience in Minnesota, along with leisurely lake walks and rugged climbing in the Sawtooth Mountains. The North Woods are home to moose, lynx, timber wolf and bald eagles, so keep your eyes open. The trail ends among the rolling prairies of North Dakota in an area where millions of buffalo once roamed the land that is now home to one of the country's greatest waterfowl nesting areas.


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