Hiking Information

Hiking is an outdoor activity which consists of walking in natural environments, often on hiking trails. It is such a popular activity that there are numerous hiking organizations worldwide. The health benefits of different types of hiking have been confirmed in studies. The word hiking is understood in all English-speaking countries, but there are differences in usage.

In the United States and United Kingdom, hiking refers to cross-country walking of a longer duration than a simple walk and usually over terrain where hiking boots are required. A day hike refers to a hike that can be completed in a single day, often applied to mountain hikes to a lake or summit, but not requiring an overnight camp, in which case the term backpacking is used. Bushwhacking specifically refers to difficult walking through dense forest, undergrowth, or bushes, where forward progress requires pushing vegetation aside. In extreme cases of bushwhacking where the vegetation is so dense that human passage is impeded, a machete is used to clear a pathway. Australians use the term bushwalking for both on- and off-trail hiking and occasionally tramping for overnight walks. New Zealanders use tramping , walking or bushwalking. Multi-day hiking in the mountainous regions of India, Nepal, North America, South America, and in the highlands of East Africa is also called trekking.

Hiking a long-distance trail from end-to-end is also referred to as trekking and as thru-hiking in some places, for example on the Appalachian Trail or Long Trail in Vermont. The Long Trail is the oldest long-distance hiking trail in the United States.

Wikipedia, Hiking, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hiking (as of Feb 15, 2010)

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Gorp.com - Comprehensive resource for adventure travel, outdoor sports and gear, national parks, and more.
Calipidder - Trip reports, photographs, and gear advice for exploring California's parks and remote backcountry on foot.
The Backpacker.tv - Videos of hikes, hiking stories by hikers for hikers.

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