Davenport Gap to Hot Springs, N.C.
April 30-May 2
This 38-mile weekend backpacking trip starts on the edge of Great Smoky Mountains National Park and heads north to the town of Hot Springs. The highlight of this trek is crossing Max Patch Bald, an incredibly scenic grassy mountain meadow.
James River Face Wilderness, Va.
Spend five days exploring one of the most secluded sections on the entire-trail: the 8,900-acre James River Face Wilderness. Enjoy views of Peaks of Otter and the Allegheny Mountains, explore eight acres of fractured quartzite boulders known as the Devil’s Marbleyard, and cross the James River on the trail’s longest bridge.
Thompson Wildlife Area, Va.
This scenic area in Northern Virginia hosts a convenient portion of the trail for hikers in the Metro D.C. area. Join the venerable Capital Hiking Club as they scout for seasonally blooming trillium on this vigorous 11-mile day hike.
Tray Mountain to Unicoi Gap, Ga.
The Georgia Appalachian Trail Club starts its annual series of A.T. hikes with this 10-mile round-trip jaunt from the second highest mountain along the trail in Georgia. From Tray Mountain’s 4430-foot summit you’ll catch an amazing 360-degree view of the vast and scenic Chattahoochee National Forest.
Newfound Gap to Clingmans Dome, Tenn.
The Smoky Mountains Hiking Club leads this classic eight-mile day hike that climbs a steady 1,500 feet from Newfound Gap toward 6,643-foot Clingmans Dome, the highest peak on the A.T.