Do you prefer a bit of risk when you hike? Like to dance with danger when you hit the trail? If so, you are in luck, as the US has some tricky trails scattered across the country to take your breath away, in more ways than one!
Have a glance what I consider to be the top 3 most exciting hikes out there!
Grand Canyon, Arizona; Bright Angel Trail
If you going to choose this hike for the upcoming summer months, there is no need to pack your thermals! In the height of season, it is not uncommon for temperatures to surpass 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
Add the searing heat to the intensity of climbing nearly 4,500 feet over 9 ½ miles, it is no surprise so many hikers call out for rescue.
The hike is definitely not for the faint-hearted and an initiative was formed 10 years ago, PSAR (Preventive Search and Rescue), who patrol the Bright Angel Trail assessing hikers welfare whilst providing water and recommending the under-prepared to seek safety.
A good tip would be to start the hike before dawn so you beat the heat of day. Obvious tips like carrying lots of water also apply!
Pikes Peak, Colorado; Barr Trail
The high altitude of this hike is enough to take your breath away before you even start. The Barr Trail gains around 7,400 vertical feet across 13 miles, through exposed meadows and picturesque bolder fields above tree line.
The frequency and intensity of lightning strikes along the peaks make it a particularly dangerous place to be, as there is no real escape from the possibility of incineration. Due to the wide change in elevation throughout the hike, you are likely to experience temperature changes.
Therefore, ensure you pack items such as fleeces and waterproofs and try and make them lightweight, so when you don’t need them, they don’t become a burden to carry.
Be sure to descend from the mountain as soon as the clouds start to thicken, and try to escape the mountain by the heat of day at noon.
Kauai, Hawaii; Kalalau Trail
Those who like their hikes to have high exposure, read on! Hikers need to tread carefully along this trail which, if not treated with care, ends in a 300 ft plummet to the rocky turf below. Add rain, hail and any other weather Mother Nature wants to throw in, and the path can be pretty slippery and unstable.
The hike is 11-miles long and is popular for a very good reason other than the thrill seeking nature of the terrain; Kalalau, one of the world’s most paradisaical beaches, awaits you at the end!