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Take a North Carolina Hike: What to Know About the Old North State

Hikers will find plenty to love in North Carolina. The state operates an extensive trail system that has kept its pathways clear for nearly 45 years for hikers, bikers and people on horseback. There are also plenty of ATV trails and rivers to meander through and enjoy the wilderness of this beautiful state. Anyone that wants to make the most of a North Carolina Hike should take the time to devise a plan, learn all they can about the state and discover everything it has to offer.

Check the Weather

The weather in North Carolina can be very unpredictable as people travel into the mountains. The spring and summer are often very warm and humid, but storms can arise quickly at higher elevations. Stay prepared by layering clothes and always having dry socks and other wet weather gear handy, even on a day hike.

Know the Possibilities

The Great Smoky Mountains, Big Bradley Falls and the Appalachian trail are some of the most scenic areas in the state. They offer great hiking opportunities, lots of fishing potential and picnicking and photo opportunities around every corner. The western section of the state is perfect for any visitor that wants to visit quaint mountain communities and forested areas. In the eastern half of North Carolina, there are still plenty of outdoor areas to enjoy and the opportunity to hike marshy coastlands for a different view.

Bring the Basics

A map, compass and first aid kit are a necessity on any hike in any state and North Carolina is no exception. Be sure to have comfortable footwear, plenty of water and to know the conditions of each trail before setting out. Some of the trails in North Carolina parks and easy walks suitable for families and others are expert trails that should only be attempted by the most experienced hiker. Talk to locals about the conditions if there is any question about what the trail has to offer.

Researchers have determined that approximately 2 million hikers set out on trails in North Carolina each year. These hikers are people of all ages and genders, they come from many different states and countries and they have many different levels of experience and ability. However, despite all their differences, each hiker comes for the same reason. All want to see the beauty of the state and learn more about the wildlife and outdoor recreational potential it has to offer.