Alabama hiking is one of the attractions of this state, which has a great deal
of geographical diversity and plenty of wilderness areas. You'll find that there
are many excellent hiking trails in Alabama for the outdoor enthusiast. Hiking
in Alabama is often a complement to other popular outdoor activities such as
fishing and camping.
There are also Alabama trails for hiking in Alabama that are near other popular
tourist spots, such as the Talladega
Speedway and the Robert
Trent Jones Golf Trail. You can enjoy Alabama hikes if your vacations
take you to one of the large cities, and hiking in Alabama is an activity offered
by many of the state's resorts.
In fact, hiking in Alabama is so popular that the state has its own Alabama
Hiking Society dedicated to protecting, maintaining, and promoting safe, pristine
Alabama trails throughout the statewide system.
The types of hiking trails in Alabama can be divided into four basic categories: mountain, metro, river regions, and the coast along Gulf Shores. Alabama hikes in the mountains encompass the Appalachian Mountains between Huntsville and Birmingham in the north of the state. The Appalachian Mountains run from northern Alabama north through the United States and into Canada. This is the region known for its lake and river fishing and world-class golfing. The mountain region also includes the Talladega National Forests, location of some of the best wilderness hiking trails in Alabama as well as some of the state's best luxury hotels and resorts. Many of the hiking trails have facilities for camping backpackers, but are also accessible to wilderness rental cabins.
There are also excellent trails for hiking in Alabama in and around the Birmingham,
Florence, and Huntsville metropolitan
regions. One of the most popular Alabama hikes in the Montgomery
region is along the Pinhoti Trail; it is the longest in the state, and extends
all the way into Georgia
and connects with the more than 2,500 miles of the Appalachian
Trail. There is also river hiking in Alabama in several areas, including
the short but very popular Bartram Trail. This is one of the Alabama trails
that is both for hiking and canoeing. It follows a portion of the route that
William Bartram, called America's first naturalist, took through states in the
southeast United States in the late eighteenth century.
There is also Alabama hiking to enjoy in the deltas and rivers of the Gulf Coast region. Many of the trails are accessed from Gulf Shores. Very popular is the Bon Secor National Wildlife Refuge that contains 7,000 acres of wildlife habitat that includes wetlands and pristine beaches and extensive sand dunes. The beaches here shelter endangered species like green, loggerhead, and Ridley's sea turtles which nest on the beaches, and the endangered Alabama beach mouse. There are more than 370 species of birds, including hummingbirds, osprey, and several species of herons. On Dauphin Island is Indian Mound Park. The Native American history of the state comes to life here with oyster shell mounds (or middens) dating to the mid-sixteenth century. The birding trail here shelters nearly 400 bird species, and is ideal both as one of the coastal hiking trails in Alabama as well as another canoe trail.
As you can see, there are many opportunities for hiking in Alabama, a state that lacks only deserts in its geographic diversity. Whether you visit the state only for the Alabama trails or do some hiking in addition to visiting other attractions, you'll be enchanted by Alabama's pristine wild places.