5 Destinations for 1st time backpackers

Always wanted to backpack across the country or even around the world, but never actually did it before and not sure where to start? If you’re a backpacking newbie you may want to start out small and build your way up to longer treks and destinations further away. Here are five destinations to get you started:

National Parks: There are 59 national parks in 27 states with miles upon miles of terrain that you can explore. National Geographic Magazine named the trek from Tuolumne Meadows to Yosemite Valley in Yosemite, California one of the best backpacking trips. The trek is 28 miles one-way, but that doesn’t mean you need to do all of it, which would actually take 2 to 5 days. National Geographic writes, “This backpacking trip begins at Tuolumne Meadows and climbs up onto the granite backbone of the range, stopping at lakes and wandering through giant stands of pine before heading back down to the iconic valley.”  If this is still a bit intimidating, you can start your backpacking adventures at a local park near your hometown to gain some experience before you venture out to other destinations.

Appalachian Trail: In New York, The Appalachian Trail spans 14 states and is 3,200 miles, actually traveling from Crown Point, New York to Sakakawea, North Dakota. In New York, you can backpack the 19-mile Catskill Scenic Trail and stop at the beautiful Kaaterskill Falls in the Catskills.

Superior Hiking Trail is a 310-mile long footpath in northeastern Minnesota that moves along the North Coast of Lake Superior. Superfleet recommends that weekend backpackers time the trek here to the 18-mile stretch from Silver Bay to Country Road 6 “where views of the Big Lake and smaller glacier-scoured lakes are frequently in view through the birch and maple canopy.” They advise backpacking during fall colors, but avoiding the trail in May and early June, when it’s the buggiest.

Pacific Crest Trail: Located in the highest portion of the Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountain ranges, you’ll need a little more stamina and training for this one, but it doesn’t mean you can’t take some short trips and start to build up. Many backpackers dream about completing the trail one day.

Madrid: If you’ve dreamed of backpacking across Europe and still want that to be your first trip, then try Madrid, recommended by Backpackr magazine. The publication said that it’s perfect because rates at hostels are low and there is plenty of inexpensive foods and attractions to enjoy, including the Museo del Prado, Reina Sofia Museum and Plaza Mayor.

Travel Makers MD