RISMEDIA, July 12, 2007—The summer months are the perfect time to plan and take a family vacation — creating precious, life-long memories along the way. Taking a trip to the beach house, spending a few days at a popular theme park, or visiting an out-of-town relative are all popular choices for the annual family getaway. But how about the path less-taken — hiking.
With the proper planning and preparation, hiking can be fun, enjoyable and healthy. Families can even make hiking a weekend escape by bringing their camping gear and inviting some friends. The cool thing about hiking is that it can be done at practically any park, but AP9 TodaysEscapes recommends the following premier hiking destinations across the U.S — places that take hiking to the next level.
1. Breakneck Ridge Trail, Beacon, NY (9.6 miles).
The state of New York is known for its big-city life, but few know about its outdoor attributes — attributes Mother Nature can be proud of. Hudson Highlands State Park’s hiking trail makes a steady climb from river-level to a roll along a knobby ridge and panoramic views until it reaches a lookout. Some of the special attractions include: the Hudson River; views of the Shawangunk and Catskill Mountains; an old fire lookout tower; and mixed forests with spring and summer wildflowers. Wear boots that protect ankles, suggests AP9 Todays Escapes, since high winds and rain can cause dangerous situations during the rocky climb.
2. Appalachian Trail: The Pinnacle, Hamburg, PA (8.7 miles).
The Appalachian Trail lands the number-two position on this list because of the spectacular views of Hawk Mountain, the Lehigh Valley and Blue Rocks. Many hikers of the Appalachian Trail claim the views at the summit are some of the best views on the Pennsylvania side of the Appalachian Trail. Hiking boots are recommended for this hike because of the rocky path to the top.
3. Glacier Gorge, Estes Park, CO (9.6 miles).
Known as the most beautiful spot in Rocky Mountain National Park, Glacier Gorge has spectacular scenery, beautiful wildflowers, cascading waterfalls and beautiful alpine lakes. AP9 TodaysEscapes recommends bringing along a fishing rod and a camera!
4. Canyon of the Eagles, Burnet, TX (14 miles).
Fourteen miles of trails wind through this 940-acre park and nature preserve at Lake Buchanan. The mixed landscaping made available at Canyon of the Eagles goes from lakeside lowlands to wooded ridges 300 feet high. Some of the major attractions at Canyon of the Eagles are the wild animals. The grounds have lodging, camp and RV sites, a restaurant, a natural science center, fishing piers, a swimming area, rental boats and the Vanishing Texas River Cruise.
5. Mount Whitney, Lone Pine, CA (22 miles).
Last but not least is Mount Whitney in Lone Pine. This expedition takes hikers to the top of the highest peak in the contiguous United States, offering breathtaking views.
This article was brought to you by AP9 Todays Escapes. For more information, visit www.TodaysEscapes.com.
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