En español | What is it about our desire to get to mountain summits? George Mallory, before his fatal attempt to climb Mount Everest in 1924, answered most memorably with “because it’s there.” Other reasons: gorgeous views at the top and a nice feeling of accomplishment. Many mountains in the national parks have well-marked and maintained trails that lead hikers to their peaks and can be walked in the space of a day. (Some are very challenging, but we’ve noted where going partway offers a satisfying trek as well.) Here are some of our favorites.
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Robert and Martha Manning are authors of Walks of a Lifetime in America’s National Parks. He is professor emeritus in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont, and was director of the university’s Park Studies Laboratory.