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MST celebrates 43 years

The Mountains-to-Sea Trail turns 43 this month, and Friends of the MST has put forth four new challenges to help hikers celebrate in a safe and socially responsible way. 


  • Challenge No. 1: Take a great day hike on one of the many notable segments of the MST. 
  • Challenge No. 2: Hike one of three designated 43-kilometer stretches of the MST in 24 hours. In the mountain region, the designated stretch is the section from Jumpingoff Rock Overlook to Brinegar Cabin.
  • Challenge No. 3: Complete each of the three 43K hikes in a 24-hour period this month to claim the 43K Triple Crown. The other two sections are located in the Piedmont and Coastal Plain regions of the state. 
  • Challenge No. 4: Raise funds for the MST using the peer-to-peer campaign system Friends has created. Funds help build, maintain, protect and promote the trail. 

These hiking challenges use Great Day Hikes on North Carolina’s Mountains-to-Sea Trail as a reference. The guidebook features 40 different day hikes on the trail of varying lengths, showcasing its many natural and cultural gems. It is published by UNC Press and edited by Jim Grode. 

The MST runs for 1,175 miles across North Carolina, from Clingmans Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to Jockey’s Ridge on the Outer Banks. For more information about the trail’s 43rd birthday festivities, visit

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