When cabin fever strikes, there’s nothing quite like a rejuvenating trek through nature. And it’s probably safe to say that your pup whole-heartedly agrees. Nothing gets tails wagging quite like a romp through our country’s varied and picturesque landscapes.
From challenging inclines to stunning lakeside views, you and your canine companion will find no shortage of dog-friendly trails in our vast country. So pack an extra serving of doggy treats and prepare to get your heart pumping as we explore the most scenic places to bring your dog when you just need a break from the rat race.
1. Laurel Highlands Trail, Pennsylvania
If you’re looking for a place to unwind without clamoring throngs of people, a hike along the Youghiogheny River is a safe bet. You and your pup can enjoy some blissful solitude as you make your way through this forested trail in the hardwood hills of Pennsylvania.
2. Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Located just 75 miles outside of D.C., you’ll find a welcome respite from city life among the mountains and forests of Shenandoah National Park.
Partial to waterfalls? Check out the park’s White Oak Canyon Trail, where you’ll spot six of them. Fido can cool off with a splash in areas where the water is shallow.
3. Bear Peak, Colorado
As long as you keep him on a leash, your dog will have a blast accompanying you along the winding paths of Bear Peak. Let him stop and smell the wildflowers that grow abundantly there. You’ll get a solid workout on this trail, as it increases in difficulty towards the finish.
4. Acadia National Park, Maine
Boasting a nice blend of both easy and challenging trails, Acadia National Park is a stunning place to get some exercise with your dog. He won’t be allowed on the beaches or some of the trickier hiking trails, but there are still loads of paths to explore together.
If you’d like to make a weekend of it, you’ll be happy to hear dogs are welcome in the park’s campgrounds. Just remember to keep your canine companion leashed at all times.
5. Gatlinburg Trail, Tennessee
While most of the trails in the Great Smoky Mountains are off-limits to dogs, Gatlinburg Trail is an exception. This forested path is relatively flat and you’ll enjoy picturesque views of the Little Pigeon River.
6. Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
We’d be remiss if we failed to mention the Grand Canyon in this round-up. One of the world’s seven natural wonders, this breathtaking site is an epic place to exercise your dog. Trails above the South Rim of the canyon are dog-friendly, as are the park’s campgrounds.
Your dog won’t be able to hike the Inner Canyon with you, but if your heart is set on experiencing it, you can take advantage of the dog kennel located at the South Rim.
7. Inspiration Trail, North Carolina
At less than one mile in length, Inspiration Trail in Raleigh, North Carolina is a great starter trek for less experienced hikers. Park benches offer the chance to rest with your pooch while enjoying the wooded beauty that surrounds you.
8. Runyon Canyon, California
In the heart of L.A. lies a dog-friendly trail where your pup can run off-leash to his heart’s content. As you drink in the dreamy views of Hollywood and the Pacific Ocean, your pup will surely thank you for this slice of wilderness heaven.
9. Kootenai National Forest, Montana