3 Climbable U.S. Mountains!
DID YOU KNOW…. That the seven tallest mountains in the United States are all located in a single state? Guess which state? Read on for the answer at the bottom!!
1.) St. Regis
Located in the beautiful Adirondack Mountains in Saranac Lake, NY, sits one of the most popular mountains to climb in the region. The hike is 6.2 miles long; out and back. From atop this 2,874-foot natural wonder, climbers will have stunning views overlooking the Adirondack High Peaks and surrounding thirty lakes. Follow an access road to the trailhead sign to begin your upward hike. The mountain is a breeze for experts to climb, yet presents a fun challenge to newbies who are in good physical shape. The ascent becomes challenging towards the mountain’s top, as the gradient increases. However, the steeper sections are doable for most hikers. Note: St. Regis Mountain may be more difficult to climb during springtime as a result of washout and mud from melting snow. The fall season, at its peak, presents unforgettable views of bountiful colorful trees as far as one’s eyes can see. Late fall may also present a challenge due to snow.
2.) Pikes Peak
This is the highest summit of the southern Front Range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. It is located in the Pike National Forest in Colorado and is one of Colorado’s 53 “fourteeners” mountains which rise more than 14,000 ft. above sea level. The mountain is named in honor of American explorer Zebulon Pike, who was sadly unable to reach the summit. The most popular hiking route to the top is called Barr Trail. Visitors can walk, hike, or bike the trail on a 13-mile one way trip. While it is rated as a Class 1 (numbers increase up to 5 with difficulty – 5 being vertical) it is considered a long and strenuous hike with 8,000 ft. of elevation. Note: Snow may occur any time of year and thunderstorms are a probability in the summer. Observe stunning 360° views from the top. Don’t want to hike? Good news! You can get to the summit by car, train, or bike, too! Capture photos from the Garden of Gods, a stunning natural landmark best described as gravity-defying whimsical rock formations. Very important: Hikers must be acclimated to the elevation to prevent altitude sickness.
3.) Mt. Mansfield
Nature, rich green, and colorful forests abound on this moderately challenging hike up Mount Mansfield, the highest mountain in Vermont, with a summit that peaks at 4,393 above sea level. Mount Mansfield, of the Green Mountain Range, has secondary peaks interestingly named due to the face-like shape of the ridge line. (Features, such as the nose and forehead, become prominent when viewed from the East.) Take the Sunset Ridge Trail from Underhill State Park, one of four trails which leads to the summit ridge. This popular hiking trail is 3.3 miles to the summit. On your way up, pass distinctive tunnels formed by glaciers and visit the unique formation of Cantilever Rock. Witness Alpine tundra preserved since the Ice Age and emerge from the trees with spectacular views of nearby mountains and the Adirondacks. Note: Since much of the trail is above tree line, the route is not recommended during bad weather or high winds due to intense exposure. Four VITAL Mountain Climbing Tips:
- Understand what you’re getting into – be sure you are in good physical condition to conquer the climb and that the adventure is well within your physical capabilities.
- Do your homework – learn everything you can about climbing a mountain in terms of safety and mountain and weather conditions. Educate yourself on the trails, nature, first aid, and survival tips.
- Inexperienced climbers should always go in a group – climb mountains with well-marked trails. Let someone reliable know where you are climbing and when you are expected back.
- Start your climb earlier rather than later in the day – when your energy is higher. That way you won’t risk getting tired and getting stuck on the mountain during nightfall.
- Gear up – Before starting any hike, make sure you have the necessary gear to complete the hike and to be safe in the event of any unexpected occurrences. Gear: hiking boots (broken in), attire (layers), weather appropriate clothing, tent, water, hat, waterproof poncho, and compass.
HAPPY & SAFE HIKING! Trivia Answer: ALASKA. The highest point in the continental U.S., California’s Mount Whitney, is exceeded in height by 16 Alaskan Mountains. The seven tallest mountains in ALASKA all tower higher than 14,000 feet! WOW-WEEE!