Friday, December 17, 2010

Best Hike's Top Ten Hiking Towns Worldwide: #10 and #9 Revealed

My friend Rick McCharles, the editor of the Best Hike Blog, has started another one of his great top ten countdowns to end the year. This year, that list is his picks for the Top 10 Hiking Towns Worldwide, and if anyone knows hiking towns, it's Rick. He hikes everywhere, and I do mean everywhere, in his never ending pursuit of the perfect trail.

To earn a spot on Rick's top ten list, a hiking town needs to meet a few criteria. For instance, it needs to be located close to a major trailhead of course and it has to have a good gear shop or three to provide last minute provisions before you set out. It should also have a unique and memorable place to stay, and a great restaurant doesn't hurt the cause either.

With that in mind, Rick has already announced his first two selections that meet that description. Coming in at number 10 on his list is Moab, Utah which is located in the eastern portion of that state, not far from the Canyonlands. Rick describes Moab as a "fantastic jumping off point for outdoor adventure" and lauds it not only for its great trails, but also great rock climbing and mountain biking opportunities.

Joining Moab on the list at number 9 is Zermatt, Switzerland, which comes as no surprise to the adventure travel crowd. Zermatt sits in the shadow of the Matterhorn, perhaps the most iconic peak in all the Alps. It is all one end of the famous Haute Route, which is a spectacular trek that leads to Chamonix, France. Rick says there are trails all over the Alps, and this is one of the best places to explore them, just don't let the resort atmosphere fool you and, as he says, "Ignore the posturing Eurotrash"

Can't wait to see what town comes in at number 8!

2 comments:

David said...

Definitely looking forward to the list -- and curious to see how many in the Top 10 are in the USA.

Ann said...

Moab is fabulous. I arrived there on Thanksgiving Day, a few years ago, and I was in luck: the weather was sunny and above freezing, perfect for hiking. The restaurants were closed for Thanksgiving, but when they opened the day after, I found an excellent Italian restaurant with Minestrone soup the likes of which I had not enjoyed since my trip to Florence, Italy, years ago.