Read on to discover why Canada is the best country in the world for hiking—with 35 of Canada’s longest hiking trails!
1. The Great Divide Trail
Length: 1,200 km
The full GDT runs for a staggering 1,200 km, roughly following the Continental Divide through BC and Alberta’s Rocky Mountains. Most legs of this trail require total self-sufficiency and are suited only for experienced trekkers, but rewards come in the form of amazing vistas and high-altitude serenity. Resupplying is possibly every four to nine days; the towns of Waterton, Blairmore and Jasper are popular jumping-off points. Expect a workout: there is more than 1,500 metres of elevation difference between the highest and lowest points on the trail. The Great Divide Trail Association is always hard at work maintaining sections—their website is an excellent source of info for trekkers. (It should be noted that much of the GDT is rugged and unmarked other than by GPS coordinates—at times, more of a “route” than an actual “trail.”)
2. Bruce Trail
Length: 885 km
Perhaps the most famous trail system in Canada, the Bruce Trail is a lovingly maintained, achingly scenic route that traverses nearly 900 km through southern Ontario. Leading from the Niagara Escarpment to Georgian Bay, expect everything from mixed-woods forests, to vineyards, to quaint townships, to lakeside cliffs, to pristine waterfalls and more. Legs range from an hour or two to a week-plus. Or do the whole thing, if you have a month to spare—the routes are well-marked throughout. Also, unofficial side-trails extend the possible length to more than 900 km.