When Al and I were in the Army one thing that we struggled with was learning a new area every time we’d move and then figuring out the best places to explore.
So, we’d head down this list and try to piece together local places to hike, mountain bike and cross-country ski.
Here is a list of the top 7 places we’d go.
- Forest Service Offices: Rangers are usually eager to share information on local outdoor recreation and can tell you exactly where to go and send you out the door with maps too!
- Outdoor Gear Shops: Typically owners of gear shops like to explore and hire employees who know the local area and use the gear in their store. Employees in a good outdoor gear shop will be able to point you toward an adventure.
- Outdoor Blogger Network: We’ve used this to find local bloggers who may be writing about local trails. We like to use the search button and search bloggers by state.
- Museum Bookstores: If you follow me on twitter and listen to our podcast regularly you know that both Al and I are a bit nerdy. There isn’t a museum that we don’t stop at. We’ve had a lot of success finding information on trails that we wouldn’t know existed by visiting museum bookstores, this was especially useful when we lived in the middle of the Mojave desert. Weird, but museum bookstores and gift shops tend to sell things written by local authors.
- City & County Websites: A lot of times local communities will advertise and promote their trails, usually these are the most popular trails in the area but that’s a great place to start.
- College or Universities Outdoor Recreation Programs: If you live in a place with a college or university they might have an outdoor rec program and a little bit of google stalking or a phone call can put you in touch with a local who is really excited about exploring and will be eager to tell you about the area.
- Word of Mouth: A google search is great but sometimes you just gotta find someone wearing hiking boots or sporting a sticker covered Nalgene bottle and ask them where they like to hike.
And of course, if you’re in Southeastern Wyoming or Northern Colorado we recommend these local trails 😉 So, really there’s no excuse not to hike now that you know where to go for trail information!
I’m sure there are other resources out there, where do you go for information on where to hike?