From Appalachia to the Everglades, the South does trails like they do tailgating: long, strong, and with inexplicable pride. A day hike in the South is unlike anywhere else in the country, and Southern hospitality has nothing to do with it. These routes aren’t mild-mannered debutantes; they’re Cajun-fire, barbecue-battling, SEC-proud man-makers that land you on mountaintops and rock-solid outcroppings. These Daniel Boone trail blazers aren’t boxes to be checked, but rites of passage for the burliest hikers.
1 Conecuh Trail
How Long: 13.5-mile north loop and 5-mile south loop (connected by 4-mile link trail)
Found In: Andalusia, AL
Which Is: 2 hours northeast of Mobile; 2 hours south of Montgomery
The Draw: Crystalline lakes and one-of-a-kind Southern scenery. Starting from Blue Pond (a swimming hole worth returning to), the northern and southern loops take you past sapphire-blue ponds and a whole slew of Southern flora.
Don’t Miss: The bug spray. You’re passing through bogs and swamps, so you do the math. Visit in winter to dampen the swarm and take advantage of cooler temperatures.