Trail recommendations please!


Hi there,

I’ll be doing a thru-hike in 2020 in the US or Canada (I’m from the UK) and I’m looking for some advice as I’m not sure which trail to choose.

It needs to be > 700m long, mountainous and busy enough to meet other thru-hikers every so often, because I don’t want to hike on my own for 2 months. Less busy and curated than the AT too.

The Great Divide Trail and Pacific Northwest Trail are perfect, but I don’t think I’d meet many others. I’d be very happy to hear the contrary though.

I’ve done plenty of pretty remote trekking, but never a thru hike.

Any recommendations appreciated.



You might look into the “Benton MacKaye Trail” (and/or) “Sheltowee Trace”.
Then there’s the “North Country Trail”.
You should meet some people on any of these trails, without the over crowdedness of the AT.

Hope these help.


Thank you very much, I’ll take a look!


It’s worth reconsidering the AT. I ventured on my first thru-hike expecting (and wanting) relative peace and solitude, and the experience was anything but that–but I still had easily the best time of my life, and I’m not sure it would’ve worked out that way without all the people around. It’s also worth noting that those going southbound on the AT will run into many fewer people because they usually make the journey during different months of the year. Even if you were to do the AT northbound, you can still choose a less crowded month to start. Much of the AT trail culture is what makes it so great, and you really won’t find it on other trails. Reconsider, reconsider, reconsider! Haha, good luck to you!


It is a little difficult to tailor a trail to a planned hike. Not sure there is a trail that would meet your criteria exactly. As “Scribe” suggested, hiking a portion of the AT during a time so as to avoid the large “bubble” of hikers heading north should give you some of the solitude you are seeking yet allow you to interact with some fellow hikers on occasion. The Long Trail is 273 miles (~440KM) running the length of Vermont up to Canada. The southern 100 miles run along with the AT. If you want “rugged” then the northern section of this trail will provide! By beginning your hike on the AT somewhere in New York you could do a portion of the AT northbound and split off on the Long Trail in Vermont. Far fewer people complete the Long Trail every year than complete the AT. It is a challenge.


You could hike all the 46 high peaks in the Adirondacks. It wouldn’t be a thru hike per se, but would total well over 500 miles. 34 of them are in the High Peaks Wilderness area. Then you could top it off with the 138 mile Northville-Lake Placid trail. You’d have to research it on other forums since the ADK’s aren’t included in this forum for some odd reason.