Easiest Ways to Hike India

I’ve made several trips to the Indian Himalaya, usually disappointed at the lack of information and infrastructure.

In Nepal everything is easy. Not so in India.

Happily trekking guides IndiaHikes are doing a terrific job making organizing walking adventures easy. In fact, they want this kind of fitness experience to be accessible to everyone.

The cost of guided hikes is very reasonable.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

If you prefer to hike independently, IndiaHikes can get you the information you need.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Hike Blåvatnet, Norway – The Blue Lake

The most popular day hike in the Lyngen Alps, way north of the Arctic Circle, is to Blåisvatnet.

A striking blue colour with steep mountains in the background.

It’s considered an EASY hike for the family — but I rolled my ankle a little twice on the rocks and scree.

About 8km return, but watch your footing.

Click PLAY or watch a summer video on YouTube.

It’s fairly close to the Svensby ferry landing.

Personally, I wasn’t all that impressed by Blåisvatnet. There are gorgeous lakes everywhere in Norway. For me this wasn’t anything special.

In fact, I preferred another hike even closer to Svensby ➙ I had the Barheia summit all to myself. The much-more-famous Blue Lake was super crowded the day I was there.

Related – trip report – StunningOutdoors 

It is available on AllTrails.

#9 – Haute Route (Chamonix-Zermatt), Alps

The Haute Route in Europe is one of our top 10 hikes in the world.

Sometimes called …

  • The Walker’s Haute Route
  • “High Route”
  • Mt Blanc to the Matterhorn
  • Chamonix to Zermatt

Why?

Chamonix to Zermatt, Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn – in two weeks of mountain travel you will see the greatest collection of 4000 metre peaks in the Alps!

  • Alpine charm: valleys, lakes, glaciers
  • great food, history, culture
  • from Mont Blanc, the highest peak in Europe (4810m, 15,781ft) …
  • … to the Matterhorn, the most beautiful peak in the alps
  • 9-15 days
  • 180+kms (112mi)
  • best months June-Sept
  • crosses 11 passes, gains more than 12,000m elevation
  • difficult hiking

World → EuropeAlpsHaute Route

hauterte-map

Click PLAY or watch a 1 minute preview on YouTube. 

For details click over to our Haute Route information page.

Golden Ears Summit Trail, Vancouver B.C.

This hike is high on my personal todo list.

Explore this 22.0-km out-and-back trail near Maple Ridge, British Columbia.

Generally considered a challenging route, it takes an average of 8 h 18 min to complete.

… best times to visit this trail are March through September. Dogs are welcome, but must be on a leash.

AllTrails

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

It’s one of our best hikes in North America.

Hiking Arctic Norway – Barheia, Lyngen Alps

Trip Report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles

Click PLAY or watch a #shorts on YouTube.

Barheia is not one of the famous hikes. In fact, I only learned of it from a hiking guidebook I found at a nearby hostel.

MOST day hikes here required a lot of vertical before getting to the great vistas.

Only 350m? Only 1 hour?

Let’s GO.

It’s about 6.8km return from the trailhead — once you find it well above the highway campground.

AND it’s very conveniently located in Svensby, close to the ferry dock. You can easily walk from the ferry.

Most tourists drive right past on their way to the most popular day hike in the area, Blåisvatnet (the Blue Lake). Personally I enjoyed Barheia much better. AND had the summit to myself. The Blue Lake trail is crowded with hikers high season.

Confusingly, there’s a trailhead sign close to the campground on the highway. But the start is actually higher up the mountain, well above the campers.

Once there, you can’t get lost as it’s blazed red. Useful when the snow falls.

related – Wild Planet trip report

British Columbia Hikes NOT Requiring Reservations

British Columbia is a fantastic hiking destination. BUT campgrounds and some of the best hiking areas require difficult-to-aquire permits — most famously, the West Coast Trail.

Happily, Taryn Eyton, author of Backpacking in Southwestern British Columbia, details many great hikes that DO NOT require permits:

No permits required for the Sunshine Coast Trail

Vancouver Island

  • Juan de Fuca Trail in Juan de Fuca Marine Provincial Park near Port Renfrew (requires backcountry permits)
  • Wild Side Trail on Flores Island near Tofino (requires a water taxi to reach the trailhead)
  • Forbidden Plateau Core, Bedwell Lakes, Elk River Trail, and Arnica Lake in Strathcona Provincial Park (All require backcountry permits except Arnica Lake.)
  • Nootka Trail on Nootka Island near Gold River (requires a water taxi to reach the trailhead)
  • North Coast TrailCape Scott Trail, and San Josef Bay in Cape Scott Provincial Park near Port Hardy (requires backcountry permits, North Coast Trail requires a water taxi to reach the trailhead)
  • Raft Cove in Raft Cove Provincial Park near Port Hardy (requires backcountry permits)
  • Carmanah Valley in Carmanah-Walbran Provincial Park (requires backcountry permits)

Interior and Eastern B.C.

  • Trophy Meadows in Wells Gray Provincial Park near Clearwater (requires backcountry permits)
  • Cathedral Lakes Provincial Park near Keremeos (requires backcountry permits)
  • Okanagan High Rim Trail near Vernon and Kelowna
  • Spectrum Lake in Monashee Provincial Park near Cherryville (requires backcountry permits)
  • Gwillim Lakes in Valhalla Provincial Park near Slocan
  • Kaslo Lake in Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park near Nelson (requires backcountry permits)
  • Earl Gray Pass in Purcell Wilderness Conservancy Provincial Park near Kaslo
  • South Chilcotin Mountains Provincial Park near Lillooet

Northern B.C.

  • Hunlen Falls in Tweedsmuir Provincial Park near Bella Coola (requires backcountry permits)
  • Monkman Memorial Trail in Monkman Provincial Park near Tumbler Ridge
  • Wokkpash Valley and McDonald Creek in Stone Mountain Provincial Park near Fort Nelson
  • Mount Edziza in Mount Edziza Provincial Park near Dease Lake

Backcountry permits are not reservations. And they don’t sell out.

Taryn has more advice for hikers in this post:

How to Go Backpacking in BC Without Reservations

Hudson’s Bay Company Heritage Trail, B.C.

Very few hikers know about this 80km trail starting in Tulameen, BC and ending on the outskirts of Hope.

It follows a first nations route utilized by Hudson’s Bay Company fur traders around 1849.

See a more detailed map.

If you were interested in planning this adventure, buy the 78 page trail book. ($28)

Though little known, it’s well marked with 10 established campsites located at regular intervals. Each has a food cache, seating, fire pits, and outhouses.

Happily, Jean Robert and Gemma posted a super detailed trip report.

There are a number of river crossings.

Some mountain bike this route.

This is one of our best hikes in North America.

Thanks Kate.

Climbing Fløya, out of Tromsø, Norway

I flew to Tromsø to begin a long bikepacking tour of the west coast.

Sadly, SAS (Scandinavian Airlines) accepted money from me ➙ then didn’t deliver my bicycle and gear to Norway. It sat untouched at Heathrow airport for days. 🤨

Airlines should not offer flights if they don’t have what they need to deliver.

On the upside, there is excellent hiking out of Tromsø.

Click PLAY or see highlights on YouTube.

Tromsø is 350 kilometres (217 mi) north of the Arctic Circle.  The summer sun doesn’t set until July 27th.  I was there July 24th.

At 69°, it is north of Reykjavík, for example. 

On my only other hiking trip to Norway I made it as far north as the Lofoten Islands, but not to Tromsø.

I climbed over 1200 stone steps built by Nepalese starting 2016. In Norwegian, they are called the Sherpatrappa.

Most people stop at the restaurant atop the cable car. There’s an excellent view from the deck and atop a nearby rock cliff.

But if you continue UP look for a climbing hut known as Steinbøhytta. You can sleep there for free.

This day there were a number of reindeer grazing. They seemed unperturbed by hikers — but this big male reacted badly when encountering my backpack unexpectedly. Perhaps it looked something like a carnivore in the rocks.

You can drive or take a bus to the start. But many simply walk across the bridge from town, visiting the Arctic Cathedral on the way.

By Oursinbenjamin

If you get to remote Tromsø, don’t miss this vista.

I took the Sherpa stairs back down. But there are alternative trails descending.

AllTrails recommends a loop they call Sherpatrappa and Dalbergstien.

NEW smaller Bear Canisters

Mac:

BearVault has just released two new products, the BV425 “Sprint” and the BV475 “Trek“.

Both bear canisters meet Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee (IGBC) grizzly bear testing standards as of May 2022 and are approved for use on the John Muir Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail.

… hikers now have twice as many options on offer from BearVault to help protect their food (and protect the bears) in the backcountry. …

Halfway Anywhere

Though canisters are bulky, I certainly do appreciate having a CAMP CHAIR when I carry one. 😀

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