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Day Hiking

Ready to begin exploring the Appalachian Trail? Here’s everything you need to know to plan your next (or first) day hike.


Learning about day hikes on the A.T.

A day hike on the Appalachian Trail can be a vigorous hike to an amazing destination or a wonder-filled nature walk. It can be easy or challenging. Here are things to consider and a variety of approaches.

The Basics


How do I find great day hikes?

Learn what resources can help you find the perfect hike, from websites and apps to books and maps.

Find a hike


When is a good time to go?

Find out what season, time of day, and day of the week are best for hiking the A.T.

When to go


What do I need to bring?

Use this handy day hiking checklist to make sure you don’t forget anything important.

Day Hiking Checklist


Preparing for your A.T. hike

What you need to know before hitting the Trail, including the gear to bring.

Day hike preparation


Getting to the Trail

See all 200+ parking locations along the entire A.T. on the ATC interactive map, and find transportation options for getting to the Trail.

Interactive Map

Transportation Options


On the hike

How to navigate the A.T. and stay safe and healthy on your next adventure.

Hiking Tips


Safety on the A.T.

Learn about the hazards you may face when hiking the Appalachian Trail and how to best prepare for a safe, healthy hike.



14 State Challenge

The 14-State Challenge is a great way to visit some of the A.T.’s most iconic places in bite-sized pieces. It can be done on family vacations, when you’re traveling on business, or whenever wanderlust strikes.

Tour the Trail


Report an Incident

While the Appalachian Trail is a relatively safe place to visit, that does not mean that there are not potential dangers while you are hiking or camping. If you see something, say something — this will help us keep the A.T. as safe as possible for our visitors.