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Freak late-April snowstorms aside, spring is here for most of the country—and the outdoors beckons. Whet your appetite for the hiking months ahead with these newly-launched trips in New Mexico, Georgia, and California.
PECOS WILDERNESS: NEW MEXICO
Trek through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and discover alpine lakes, 12,000-foot peaks, and secluded camping on this 15.5-mile lollipop. Relax after the trail tops out on the shores of Lake Katherine, a Pecos Wilderness gem that’s tucked below prominent Santa Fe Baldy.
BENTON MACKAYE TRAIL, FIRST SECTION: GEORGIA
Finding solitude on the AT can be tough, but on the nearby Benton MacKaye Trail, hikers can escape the crowds. This is the first of several sections of this 300-mile long trail that we’ll launch over the next few months. At 7.1 miles, this southernmost section begins alongside the AT at Springer Mountain then diverges into old growth hardwoods and heads towards Big Stamp Gap.
FALL CREEK TO LIME KILNS: CALIFORNIA
This easy 2.4-mile out-and back in Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park brings hikers to century-old limestone kilns in the Santa Cruz Mountains. See how the mixed forest, including redwoods, has revived itself post-Industrial Revolution.
For more sweet excursions, dive into the thousands of trips already mapped on our Destinations page. Otherwise, sit tight – we’ll satisfy your map cravings with more five-star hikes next week.
POST YOUR HIKE: Submit your trail reports and photos at backpacker.com/postatrip, and get a chance to see your trip appear in an issue of BACKPACKER magazine.
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