5 trails around the world that should be on every hiker’s bucket list

If you’re feel adventurous, visit one of these daring trails

While mother nature is still serving up occasional cold fronts, spring is nearly here. And that means hikers will soon be enjoying the great outdoors.

Hitting the trails is a great way to explore, while taking in new experiences and scenery — and perhaps testing your endurance and strength. If you’re looking to take things to the next level on your next hiking adventure, these trails might be right up your alley.

Striding Edge, Lake District, U.K.

This trail lives up to its name — you will be striding along the edges of this 7.5-mile mountain trail for roughly five to seven hours.

Striding Edge resides in Britain’s Lake District, an area known for its quickly changing weather. The trail follows the third highest peak in the Lake District National Park.

“You should have the ability to read a map and a compass, because you’ll be finishing on a summit that’s often in cloud,” says Mark Eddy of guiding company Mountain Journeys.

Credit: Photo: Jonathan Tennant / Alamy

Credit: Photo: Jonathan Tennant / Alamy

Changkong Plank Trail, Mount Huashan, China

Ever see a movie where the main character has to cross a derelict wooden bridge that’s missing planks and starts to rock the moment they step on it? Well, that’s nothing compared to the Changkong Plank Trail at China’s Mount Huashan.

Huashan is one of China’s “Five Great Mountains,” and its trails are considered some of the most dangerous in the world. In order to reach the peak at 7,070 feet, hikers must first be secured to cables before taking on scaling walls, uneven steps and wooden planks drilled into the side of the mountain.

Credit: China Discovery Website

Credit: China Discovery Website

West Coast Trail, Vancouver Island, Canada

This 48-mile trail sits off the west coast of British Columbia on Vancouver Island. And while the scenery is beautiful, the hike is grueling.

This trail includes steep ladders, bridges and boardwalks along the way. While you’ll encounter plenty of hikers, you may also spot some wildlife — wolves, cougar and bears have all been sighted along the trail.

The West Coast Trail takes anywhere from five to seven days to complete. Many hikers call it quits and turn around, while other have needed rescuing by emergency services.

Credit: Photo by: Paxson Woelber

Credit: Photo by: Paxson Woelber

Cascade Saddle, Wanaka, New Zealand

This trail comes with a warning: It’s only for those with plenty of experience and serious navigation capabilities. The Cascade Saddle is in the heart of the Mount Aspiring National Park on New Zealand’s South Island.

The iconic trail has seen 12 deaths over the past few years due to its slippery rocks and other hazardous conditions. Cascade Saddle is 4,921 feet high with 29.9 miles of breathtaking scenery. Hikers can expect to finish within two days, and can camp on the trail or bunk in one of the mountain huts along the way.



Stairs of Death, Huayna Picchu, Peru

Known as the “stairs of death,” the steep stone stairs were built in the Incas and lead directly to the top of Huayna Picchu. The 26-mile hike starts at about 9,000 feet above sea level and ascends to over 13,000 feet. It’s a tough, but rewarding hike. Despite the name, there actually haven’t been very many deaths, especially when you consider that the site receives more than 67,000 visitors per year.

There are various package options to hike the trail, as well as to see the ruins of nearby Machu Picchu, either in a group or on a private tour.

These trails aren’t for the faint of heart or those who struggle with vertigo. Before taking on a challenging hike, be prepared with appropriate hiking gear, maps, supplies of food and water, and an emergency exit plan.