Hiker Resources

Hiker Resources

Trail Angels

The MST is fortunate to have many Trail Angels: friendly people who have volunteered to provide assistance to long-distance hikers ranging from local information to lodging and food.

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Shuttle Services

This page lists commercial services that may be available to provide shuttles along the MST and includes all commercial services that we are currently aware of.

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Maps, Books & Other Resources

Great Day Hikes on North Carolina’s Mountains-to-Sea Trail

by Friends of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, edited by Jim Grode

The first-ever guide to day hikes along the crown jewel of North Carolina foot trails, this book features 40 hikes from throughout the state carefully chosen to appeal to hikers of all experience levels. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or new to the outdoors, this official guide from Friends of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail is your go-to companion for exploring all the trail has to offer, showcasing everything from scenic mountain vistas to surprising escapes in the state’s Piedmont region and the wonders of coastal plain pocosins. It is available through our store, from UNC Press, or at online or brick-and-mortar bookstores and outdoor stores.


The Mountains-to-Sea Trail Across North Carolina: Walking a thousand miles through wildness, culture and history

by Danny Bernstein

Danny wrote an account of her MST journey, focusing on the beauty, quirkiness, and vibrancy of the trail. Her book, published by the History Press (2013), is not a hiking guide but will give anyone interested in hiking the trail a great sense of the highlights and challenges of completing the trail. The book is available in bookstores and outdoor stores throughout the state and on Amazon.


Hiking North Carolina’s Mountains-to-Sea Trail

by Allen de Hart

This guidebook was published in 2000 by the University of North Carolina Press and is available in many bookstores and on Amazon. Although the hiking directions are out of date because new trail is being added every year, the book contains much valuable information about the areas the trail goes through and the history of the trail.


A Guide to the Edible and Medicinal Plants of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail

by Heather Houskeeper

A backpacker’s practical guide to identifying and harvesting edible and medicinal plants found along the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, complete with recipes to transform them into delicious backcountry meals and snacks. Heather has thru-hiked the MST twice. This guide can be purchased directly from the author at TheBotanicalHiker.blogspot.com. [Note: all information, suggestions and recommendations are made by the author. Friends has not verified the content within and is not endorsing the recommendations as either safe or unsafe for consumption. Also, the harvesting of plants on state or federal lands is restricted. Contact the land managing agency for more details.]


MST Trail Profiles and Maps: From Clingmans Dome to Mount Mitchell and Beyond

by Walt Weber and “the Gang” for the Carolina Mountain Club (3rd Ed.)

This book includes maps and profiles for about half of the mountain sections of the trail. It also includes valuable information about the history and natural features of the trail. The book can be purchased through our store as well as many bookstores and outdoor stores and on Amazon.

From the Blog

MST Hiker Contributions

Many from the MST community document their time on the trail.  Some of these are shared here: Tara Dower produced short movies about her Fastest Known Time hike in September of 2020. Watch those on her YouTube page, The Dower Duo. Jeff and Debra Rezeli [...]

Hiking the MST – “Start exploring North Carolina – one step at a time.”

“I’d like to hike the Mountains-to-Sea Trail (MST), but where do I start? Is there a map to follow? When is the best time to hike? Are there dangers? Can I do it alone?” When we begin thinking about doing a 1,000-mile trail there are also a thousand questions we ask. And even if we’re only thinking of hiking a short section, we still have questions to resolve before we take the first step. The purpose of this article is to give an overview of the MST, help familiarize you with others who have hiked the trail, and provide advice from previous hikers that will prove useful as you hit the trail.

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Start exploring North Carolina – one step at a time.