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The Best USA Hiking Trails for Boomer Hikers and Travelers

The best USA Hiking Trails for boomer travelers

Hikers walking on a rainforest trail thick with trees and greenery in Alaska.

Hiking on an Alaska expedition cruise.

Alan and I include hiking on our trips around the U.S. whenever possible. Hikes are ideal for stretching your legs on a road trip or when exploring a national park.

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Our trail recommendations are usually geared around moderate to easy day hikes. We look for US hiking trails on national park, state park or national forest websites. The American Hiking Society website is another good resource filled with hiking tips and trail advice. We particularly like the “hike near you” feature for hikes in the United States.

On this page, we share the best USA hiking trails from our personal experience—or those of guest writers. You’ll want to read them before leaving on your USA hiking trip. And don’t forget to consult the My Itchy Travel Feet hiking planner to make the most of your time on the trail.

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The best USA hikes for your next boomer trip

Waterfall streams down a cliff at Lower Calf Creek Falls.

Hiking Lower Calf Creek Falls in Grand Staircase-Escalante

On a visit to Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Alan and I discovered one of the best waterfall hikes we’ve ever experienced. This moderate 6-mile-round-trip trail travels slick rock and lush creek bottom. There’s plenty to see along the way including petroglyphs and granaries (from a distance). Lower Calf Creek Falls is the reward at the turn around point. Read all about one of our favorite USA hikes by clicking on Hiking to Lower Calf Creek Falls in Grand Staircase-Escalante .

Rocky cliffs with evergreens growing on top overlooking the Pacific Ocean at Kodiak Island, AK.

Hiking With History on Kodiak Island

If your cruise ship makes it all the way to Kodiak Island, Alaska, you’ll discover beautiful views combined with WWII history on the trails at Ft. Abercrombie State Historical Park. Alan and I learn something new every time we hike FT. Abercrombie’s moderate trails filled with beautiful views and so much history. Click on Hiking With History on Kodiak Island to read more about our two experiences on one of our favorite Alaska shore excursions.

A green landscape surrounds rocky outcroppings and arches in National Bridge State Resort Park.

A fun hike at Natural Bridge State Resort Park in Kentucky

You don’t have to hike in Arches National Park to see arches. At Natural Bridge State Resort Park in the Red River Gorge area of eastern Kentucky, you’ll see over 200 natural arches within a 10-mile radius, plus cliffs, caves, and gorges. And there is plenty to do after your hike like birdwatching or enjoying water activities on a 60-acre lake. But hiking is what you came to do. Be sure to read Suzan L. Jackson’s tips for Hiking in Kentucky’s Natural Bridge State Resort Park .

Gold, orange and yellow autumn leaves on a Tennessee hike.

Baby Boomer Hiking Adventures in Tennessee

Discover five Tennessee hiking adventures that boomers can do. The state may be known for its country music scene, but that’s nothing compared to the natural beauty that you’ll experience. If you’re road tripping across Tennessee, include these trails in your itinerary. James Richardson shows you how to make the most of a Tennessee hiking trip in Baby Boomer Hiking Adventures in Tennessee.


Blue river meanders through the desert with mountains in the distance at Big Bend National Park.

Hiking Adventure in Big Bend National Park, Texas

Big Bend National Park, 300 miles south of El Paso, Texas, offers rugged terrain, a diverse habitat and plenty of boomer adventure along the border of Texas and Mexico. Discover two hiking trails that offer a small taste of the adventures that this big park provides. And, you won’t run into crowded hiking trails like you’ll experience in other U.S national parks. Read Deborah Lonergen’s hiking advice by clicking on Hiking Adventure in Big Bend National Park.

Eight Great Hiking Trails in Yosemite National Park

From easy to moderately difficult, hiking in Yosemite National Park is a great way to see the immense beauty of the park itself. Check out eight great of the best trails. To read more, click on Eight Great Hiking Trails in Yosemite National Park.

Hiking the North Rim of the Gunnison National Park

Gunnison National Park is a hiker’s dream come true. Located along the North Rim at Black Canyon, the views were outstanding. Click on Hiking the North Rim at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park to read more about our experience.

Hiking to a green sand beach in Hawaii

If you’re looking for off-the-beaten-path adventure on Hawaii’s Big Island, this hike should be on your list. To read about our experience, click on Hiking to a green sand beach in Hawaii.

Six Amazing Hikes in Shenandoah National Park

If you’re looking for waterfalls, rocky outcroppings and mountain top views, these Shenandoah National Park trails are for you. Located in Viriginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, you’ll find these hikes located on Skyline Drive. For some great hiking options, click on Six Amazing Hikes in Shenandoah National Park.

Montana Hiking

From Glacier National Park to the Bitterroot Mountains and beyond, scenic Montana hikes are plentiful for hikers of all levels. To read about our favorite sites, click on Tips for Hiking in Montana.

Glacier National Park Hikes

From easy to difficult, Glacier National Park offers some of the most scenic hiking trails that we’ve experienced. To read about our most memorable experiences, click on Glacier National Park Hikes.

The round stone top of Pilot Mountian with trees and a blue sky.

A beautiful hike on Pilot Mountain near Winston-Salem, NC.

I hiked beautiful Pilot Mountain State Park while on a trip to explore Winston-Salem, NC. The easy trail to Big Pinnacle Overlook comes with plenty of viewpoints overlooking the Yadkin Valley. Reward yourself after the hike with a visit to any of the Yadkin Valley wineries. I enjoyed Raffaldini Vineyards and Winery. Read more about this North Carolina trail by clicking on Hiking North Carolina’s Pilot Mountain.

Wildflowers in a grassy headland look out onto the Pacific Ocean at Cascade Head.

Enjoy the Cascade Head Hike on Oregon’s Central Coast

You’ll find this hike on the Oregon coast just north of Lincoln City on Oregon’s central coast. The trail travels through thick forest before arriving at a grassy headland overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Alan and I enjoyed the Cascade Head trail while on a photography workshop with landscape photographer, Marc Adamus. Click on Oregon’s Cascade Head Hike to read about our experience.

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