About the AT

The idea for the Appalachian Trail is widely credited to Benton MacKaye, a regional planner who envisioned creating a network of work, study and farming camps stretching from Mt. Washington in New Hampshire to Mt. Mitchell in North Carolina.

The idea was first publicized in October of 1921. By 1925, the first Appalachian Trail Conference was convened to get the project off the ground. Like most large scale projects, the creation of the Appalachian Trail happened in fits and starts. While the trail was completed as a continuous footpath in 1937, it wasn’t until 1968 that it was designated (along with The Pacific Crest Trail) as a national scenic trail and afforded federal protection.

View state by state maps and descriptions of the Appalachian Trail.

Here is a look at some of the trail stats:

Distance: 2,181 miles
Number of States: 14
Highest Elevation: 6643’ (Clingman’s Dome, TN)
Lowest Elevation: 124’ (Bear Mountain SP, NY)
Percentage of hikers completing the trail that are section hikers: 20%
Number of section hikers completing the trail per year on average*: 116.5
Number of thru hikers starting the trail that finish in any given year: About 25%

*Based on 2006-2011 data compiled by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy

Appalachian Trail Mileage by State*

Map of the Appalachian Trail. Copyright 2015, Jeff Ryan.

Maine: 281.4 miles

New Hampshire: 160.9 miles

Vermont: 149.8 miles

Massachusetts: 90.2 miles

Connecticut: 51.6 miles

New York: 88.4 miles

New Jersey: 72.2 miles

Pennsylvania: 229.6 miles

Maryland: 40.9 miles

West Virginia: 4 miles

Virginia: 550.3 miles

Tennessee: 287.9 miles

North Carolina: 95.5 miles

Georgia: 76.4 miles