MST best hiking trail in WNC

MST17C-view on BRP near Blowing Rock

The Mountain Xpress Best of WNC 2012 has just come out. And the Mountains-to-Sea Trail came in first for best hiking trail. It says

From short afternoon hikes to weeks-long advenures though the backcountry, the Mountains-to-Sea Trail offers one of the most diverse and expansive trails in the Southeast.

You can read the rest of the review here.

The MST beat out the Appalachian Trail, which came in second. Now cynics might say “well, that just means that the MST is closer to Asheville than the A.T. And that’s true. But tied for third, were two hiking trails that are much closer that the A.T. – the Art Loeb Trail through Pisgah District and Graveyard Fields. All are great locations.

The Mountain Xpress is an alternative weekly, which focuses on young, urban pursuits such as music, beer, cocktails, restaurants and more beer. They ditched the Outdoor column at the end of 2010. It’s even surprising that they  have outdoor categories. The winners are determined by a reader poll. All they say is that thousands answered the poll online. 

And consider this. This is the first time that the MST has won first place since I’ve been following their Best of WNC poll. A couple of years ago, the MST was not even mentioned. Instead the winner was always “the Blue Ridge Parkway.” We know that the Parkway is a road. When people voted for the Parkway, they really meant the MST but they didn’t know that the white dots they were following was the MST.

So there’s more awareness of the MST. Now if only they would quit saying that the MST is still under construction… You can walk it from end to end, now.


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