There is no official hiking season. Some places are mild and hike-friendly year-round, but in many parts of the northern hemisphere, the weather and trail conditions are only good for trekking from late spring all the way to mid-November. That’s six solid months for day hikes, backpacking, mountain climbing, and scrambling. Add snowshoes or skis, and there’s no reason you can’t get into the backcountry all year round.
But if you think you can just hop off the couch after a long layoff, slip on your boots, and hit the trail, think again. Most trails are uneven and have at least some elevation gain, so even the easiest hiking requires balance and strength to avoid injury. The good news: getting back into the swing of things isn’t as hard as you think.