Located in the US, the hiking in Kentucky offers more than a half-dozen beautiful hikes and backpacking trails. The best Kentucky hiking based on popularity are considered to be Cumberland Gap National Park, Mammoth Cave National Park, Sheltowee Trace Trail, Otter Creek Park, and Indian/Spaas Creek Trail. For a detailed trail description and printable trailhead map, just select a Kentucky hiking trail below.
South of Lexington near Pineville in the Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, the 17 mile Ridge Trail straddles the crest of the Cumberland Mountains east of Cumberland Gap, starting at Pinnacle Overlook and leading hikers 16.6 miles to the parks eastern boundary, near White Rocks. Hardwood forests of hickory, oak, and maple cloak the precipitous mountainsides, interrupted by rocky outcrops that afford views of the high valleys below.
Near Park City, the 53,000 acre Mammoth Cave National Park has 60 miles of above ground hiking trails, in addition to the extensive subterrain routes, to explore around rock formations. While in Mammoth Cave, make sure to check out the Big Woods, Kentucky's last stand of old growth forest.
Located on the mountainous border between Kentucky and Virginia, the Pine Mountain Trail will be over 120 miles long with a conservation corridor width of 100 to 1,000 feet traveling from Elkhorn City in Pike County to Cumberland Gap National Military Park in Bell County.
Near South Morehead in the Cave Run area, the Buckskin Trail (#113) is 10 mile hiking route following the shoreline and connecting the Sheltowee Trace Trail to trails in the Pioneer Weapons Management Area (PWMA). The hiking trailhead is near the Zilpo Campground.