Category archives for Best Weekend Adventures

Montana: Climb Granite Peak

Take a two- to four-day weekend to tackle the highest point in Montana. What Is It? Take on a burly 20- to 24-mile round-trip backpack excursion to top out on one of the most difficult high points in the 50 states. Granite Peak, an imposing chunk of rock located in the Beartooth Range, towers over…

New Jersey: Paddle the Pine Barrens

See a different side of the Garden State with a paddle trip down the Mullica River. What Is It? Escape the hustle and bustle of the nation’s most densely populated state with a paddle trip through the Pine Barrens (aka Pinelands), a 1.1-million-acre wilderness valued for its clean waters, rich plant and animal life, and…

Check this classic Northeast challenge off your bucket list. What Is It? Push your limits by hiking from one end of the Presidential Range to the other. This challenge, located in New Hampshire’s famed White Mountains, involves walking 20 to 24-plus miles over stout, mountainous landscape and gaining a total of 8,500 to 10,000 feet…

Nevada: Discover the Ruby Mountains

Explore “Nevada’s Swiss Alps” on foot. What Is It? Nevada has a lot more to offer than the lights, casinos, and showgirls of Las Vegas. Take your time getting to know some of its more natural features with a day hike or backpacking journey through the rarely visited Ruby Mountains, located 20 miles south of…

Nebraska: Float the Niobrara

Paddle a wondrous river that snakes through the heartland. What Is It? The Niobrara, a national scenic river, wanders through a sea of grass and extraordinary, fossil-filled sandstone cliffs hidden in northern Nebraska. Explore the river’s diversity with a mellow, 22-mile Class I/II weekend float from the Cornell Bridge to Rocky Ford. Camp or stop…

Missouri: Fly-Fishing in the Ozarks

Land a trophy-size fish while angling the world-class waters of southern Missouri. What Is It? Imagine having exclusive entry to over a mile of private riverbank on the North Fork of the White River, considered one of the top hundred trout streams in the U.S. Head to the River of Life Farm (ROLF), and you’ll…

Spend the night at the Bird Runner Wildlife Refuge. What Is It? Explore the Bird Runner Wildlife Refuge, a private, 220-acre tract located in the Flint Hills and preserved by prairie devotees. Here you can wander at will—splash in creeks, bushwhack through hills where blue-eyed grass and blue indigo bloom, and scope wild turkeys and…

Minnesota: Canoe the Boundary Waters

Recharge with a paddle trip through Minnesota’s iconic wilderness. What Is It? Create the experience of a lifetime by immersing yourself in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW), one of the last truly untouched places on the planet. With approximately 1,500 miles (2,414 kilometers) of canoe routes and 2,000 secluded campsites, there are countless…

Michigan: A Grand Adventure

Tour Grand Island on foot, by bike, and by kayak. What Is It? Grand Island, located a quick boat ride from the bustling town of Munising, boasts spectacular scenery, rich history, and countless recreational opportunities. Take advantage of all this island has to offer with a multisport weekend camping adventure featuring hiking, biking, paddling, and…

Recon the shores of Cape Cod on a stand-up paddleboard adventure. What Is It? Get to know the beauty of Cape Cod as you paddle, swim, and play throughout its pristine beaches, hidden salt marshes, rich estuaries, and bountiful bays. Excursions include a lesson that covers all the skills you need for a fun, enjoyable…

Maryland: Float the Yough River

White-water raft the scenic and wild Youghiogheny River. What Is It: A white-water paddling trip on the fantastic Youghiogheny, known as the Yough, a river that begins its journey through Maryland in gently rolling farmlands only to cut north through some of the state’s most rugged mountain topography. Choose the Upper Yough if you’re looking…

Walk one of the park’s newest, toughest trails, then enjoy an easy lake paddle. What Is It? Looking to get off the beaten path and avoid the crowds in one of Maine’s most heavily visited state parks? Try the Traveler Mountain Loop. It’s a lung-busting, 10.6-mile circuit that includes three separate mountain summits and climbs…

Hike the Wild Azalea National Recreation Trail. What Is It? Central Louisiana’s Wild Azalea National Recreation Trail, located in the southwest of Alexandria, travels the length of a marathon (26.2 miles). You could hike the whole thing in a day or spend three days backpacking through this rich, biodiverse region. Even though the Bayou State…

Slither, crawl, and climb on the Wild Cave Tour. What Is It? With more than 400 miles of explored area, Mammoth Cave National Park boasts one of the world’s longest cave systems. The Park Service offers an array of tours varying in length and focus so you can pick the best ones for your needs.…

Find solitude with a backpacking trip in a hidden Iowa wilderness.             What Is It? The nearly thousand-acre Coon Creek Wildlife Management Area offers hikers, backpackers, and nature lovers a largely untouched, rarely visited spot to explore. Spend a day or the weekend bushwhacking off-trail or wandering the dirt paths and roads that snake through…

Hike the Crown Jewel of Indiana’s State Park System What Is It? This series of 11-day hikes allows you to delve into the deep canyons, sandstone cliffs, and serene hemlock groves of stunning Turkey Run State Park. The trails are short, but don’t be fooled—most are rugged and challenging. Definitely don’t miss Trail 3, a…

Climb and hike in one of Illinois’ most pristine places. What Is It? Combining climbing and hiking is the preeminent way to explore this hilly, 4,055-acre oasis hidden amidst the largely flat Corn Belt. Rock climbers can score great sandstone, top-roped routes ranging from 5.6 to 5.13 at Shelter 1 Bluff and the Devil’s Standtable…

Climb, float, and soak among the serrated peaks of south-central Idaho. What Is It? A varied weekend full of high-adrenaline adventure starts with a quick boat ride across Redfish Lake. This shuttle ushers you to some of the best hiking and climbing in the state. After a short trek up the glacially sculpted Redfish Canyon,…

Hawaii: Catch Waves in Oahu

Learn to surf from the pros in a tropical paradise.   What Is It? Never surfed before? Have a lot of experience? Either way, lessons or a full-immersion surf camp on Oahu’s legendary North Shore will improve your skills in no time. Beginners: You’ll gain confidence and all the information you need to catch your…

Enroll in hang gliding flight school in the gorgeous hills of northwest Georgia. What Is It? Learn the nuts and bolts of hang gliding from lovely Lookout Mountain. In just two days, you’ll acquire all the skills necessary to successfully complete the requirements for the United States Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association (USHPA) Hang 1…

Florida: Bike Big Shoals Country

Tour the diverse terrain along the Suwannee River on bicycle. What Is It? This ride combs through the hidden gem of Big Shoals Conservation Area and can be 5 to 25 miles, depending on your energy level. We definitely recommend cycling at least the ten-mile loop along the Suwannee River that starts from the Little…

Delaware: Fly High

Get a bird’s-eye view as you parasail hundreds of feet over the ocean. What Is It? A thrilling experience where up to three people attached to a parachute fastened to a motorboat soar high in the air while the boat cruises along the ocean below. Why Do It? This bucket list item is the most…

Connecticut: Trout Unlimited

Fish the Housatonic River, considered one of the best trout streams in the East. What Is It? Test your fishing skills along northwest Connecticut’s beloved and beautifully forested Housatonic River. Because managers have created a 10.4-mile Trout Management Area that begins in West Cornwall and have designated another stretch as “fly-fishing only,” this spot provides…

Colorado: Hike High

Hike from Crested Butte to Aspen. What Is It? Hike a butt-busting 11 miles from the tiny mountain hamlet of Crested Butte, over West Maroon Pass to the extravagant ski town of Aspen. From the Butte, you’ll climb 2,200 feet through patches of aspen and spruce that dapple a narrow, grassy valley. Even in summer,…

Scale exquisite, vertical rock in a wilderness setting. What Is It? Lassen Volcanic National Park features a giant volcanic dome, hot springs, and a variety of secluded, high-country cliffs and outcrops that provide excellent climbing for all levels. Spend the weekend scaling cracks, arêtes, and crags that rival those of Yosemite. You’ll find that the…