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Falcon Guide: Hiking North Carolina by Randy Johnson


With full color photographs and maps, this thoroughly updated and revised fourth edition is a guide to more than 500 hiking trails in all regions of the state, from the Great Smokies and the Blue Ridge Parkway to the Piedmont and the Outer Banks.

One of the most popular books in Globe Pequot’s nationwide FalconGuides® series, Hiking North Carolina describes more than 500 trails all across the state. With the 100th anniversary of North Carolina’s state parks in mind, I’ve added more state parks and trails, in clouding the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, plus park history. The National Park Service is also 100, and there are more Park Service sites and trails, too.  There are also dozens of the state’s newly invented TRACK Trails, great interpretive paths with kids and parents in mind. All in all, a complete update on a great trails state. Watch my take on the new edition as discussed with D.G. Martin of UNC-TV’s North Carolina Bookwatch.

North Carolina’s mountains-to-sea spectrum of scenic beauty ranks it among the nation’s top outdoor recreation states. From the Great Smokies and the Blue Ridge Parkway (the nation’s most popular national park and most unit of the national park system) to surprising Piedmont sites and on to the world-class strand of the Outer Banks islands, North Carolina’s outdoors shouldn’t be missed.

This hefty guide richly delves into every region, ranging from city greenways, to national military parks, state parks and national forests. Hikes include a complete traverse of the Appalachian Trail (with a strong focus on the best day hikes and overnight backpack trips), and detailed sections on Grandfather Mountain, Linville Gorge and Shining Rock wilderness areas, and Roan Mountain’s meadow-covered Appalachian Trail summits. Major greenway coverage features Charlotte, the Triad (Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point), Durham, and Raleigh. Coastal hikes include Nags Head, Cape Lookout, Cape Hatteras-even an island ghost town.

Indeed, this book was designed to offer as many hikes in the North Carolina Mountains, near urban centers, or to waterfalls and other points of interest, as books targeted to those topics alone. Readers find ample options in those specialty areas-and the rest of the state, too.