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Top 10 Trails in the U.S.

Online planning resource for self-guided
outdoor and adventure trails in North America, the most complete online planning resource for self-guided outdoor and adventure travel in North America, has released its annual list of Top Trails. Now in its fourth year, the Top Trails list is the only Nielsen ratings-type ranking for trail popularity and usage. The Top Trails of 2005 were selected based on the analysis of more than 10 million 'votes' by subscribers and visitors to the website of over 30,000 guidebook trail descriptions. The results of this year's Top Trails list continue to show nationwide trail usage, a diverse selection of self-guided outdoor and adventure travel activities, and the popularity of multi-day trips.

Top 10 Trails of North America 2005
Voting is based on's data and includes: trail page visits, trail review submissions and trail guide views.

1. Breakneck Ridge Trail
(Beacon, New York; Hiking)
2. Cohutta Wilderness Area Trails
(Ellijay, Georgia; Hiking)
3. Glacier Gorge
(Estes Park, Colorado; Hiking)
4. Harriman State Park
(Bear Mountain, New York; Walking)
5. Mount Whitney
(Lone Pine, California; Hiking)
6. Appalachian Trail: The Pinnacle
(Hamburg, Pennsylvania; Hiking)
7. Appalachian Trail: Springer Mountain to Hightower Gap
(Suches, Georgia; Hiking)
8. Appalachian National Scenic Trail - Pennsylvania Section (Rouzerville, Pennsylvania; Hiking)
9. Conundrum Hot Springs
(Aspen, Colorado; Hot Springs)
10. American River Confluence to Lake Clementine
(Auburn, California; Hiking)

Key results from the Top 100 Trails of 2005:
Top activities
Hiking remains the most popular activity (85 trails), followed by hot springs, mountain biking, walking, road biking (new for 2005), and campgrounds (new for 2005).

Top states
Spread across 27 different states, top states include New York (14 trails), California (13), Georgia (7), Virginia (7), Colorado (6), Penn-sylvania (6), North Carolina (5), Washington (5), and Arkansas (4).

East vs. West
68 of the Top 100 trails are located east of the Mississippi River
2005 vs. 2004: Within the Top 20 trails, there are 4 new trails and 15 trails increased or decreased their ranking compared to 2004. In addition, 9 trails are over 20 miles long, indicating that there is a continued interest in longer, multi-day trips.

"It is encouraging to see that 17 of the top 20 most popular outdoor destinations were hiking trails," said Dr. Gregory Miller, President of the American Hiking Society. "We're proud of our long-term partnership with as we find more and more outdoor enthusiasts, particularly technologically savvy youth, using the internet to seek out reliable information on trail routes and conditions. The Top Trails data is also valuable when working with our land management partners on the national and local level to ensure adequate funding and resource allocation to keep these and other trails open, safe and well-maintained."

"Once again,'s Top Trails list provides valuable information to the outdoor and travel industries," says Doug Colbeck, co-founder and CEO of "Local, regional and national outdoor and travel organizations will use our trail popularity and usage data to help support conservation and tourism programs. has direct access to important consumer information along with immediate feedback on their interests and actions (page visits, reviews, downloads, etc.) involving outdoor and adventure travel activities across North America. This information cannot be found anywhere else."

View the entire Top 100 Trails of 2005 list here.

View the Top Trails by state and activity type here.