"To walk in nature is to witness a thousand miracles." -- Marie Davis, Professional Hiker

One of the world's most popular outdoor activities, hiking is a sport enjoyed by people of all skill levels. It involves walking on trails in natural environments, often along hills or through forests.

Anything from a half-hour jaunt through a national park to a 6-day backpacking trip through the Andes can be considered hiking.

One of the great things about hiking is that there are trails for all skill levels. Trails can be short and flat or long and strenuous; they can go through urban areas, forests, deserts, or mountains. Nearby hills can even provide a moderate hike close to home.

The benefits of hiking are many. Hiking offers stress relief, contributes to weight loss, improves cardiovascular health, and strengthens muscles in the lower body. It is also great for clearing the mind and relaxing after a busy day.  

Some hikers enjoy the thrill of hiking dangerous trails, which requires more technical knowledge about climbing steep hills, using ropes and rappelling.

Others prefer to hike smooth trails through forests and meadows, while some prefer hiking in urban areas.

Hiking is sure to be a memorable experience, whether it's only for the day or an entire backpacking trip.