Seeking Shade: 5 Late-Summer Hikes That Won't Overheat You

Sparkling waterfalls, rushing rivers, and cooler temperatures make these hikes a welcome reprieve from that late-summer heat. 

By Alli Hill

Seeking Shade: 5 Late-Summer Hikes That Won't Overheat You

With scorching summer days reaching 100 degrees or more, you might think that hiking simply isn’t an option in late summer. The good news is that certain trails are much more forgiving when it comes to warm weather. There is plenty of shade to keep you cool, not to mention waterfalls and rivers to splash away the heat. Gear up and hit the trails on these five best late-summer hikes that won’t overheat you. 

Icelandic State Park, Cavalier, ND

Icelandic State Park is chock full of summer fun, particularly in the way of eight different trails that lead you through shaded forests and along beautiful waterfronts. The trail system is fairly small, just four miles of twisting, winding pathways that interloop each other. But for a hot summer day, four miles is usually plenty, especially with the series of short-and-sweet trails that let you break up the trip however you please.

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Blueberry Mountain, Weld, ME

If you’re looking for one of the sweetest summer trails in Maine, there’s no better place to be than Blueberry Mountain. It’s one of the lesser known trails in Weld, so you don’t have to battle tons of tourists. If you’re looking for a sign, you probably won’t find one. Head out from the Blueberry Bible Camp parking lot, then with the main lodge at your back, look for a trail to the right leading to an athletic field. Shortly after entering the forest, the trail will bear right and take you straight up the 2,820-foot mountain, where you can indulge in your fill of wild Maine blueberries.

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Trail of Ten Falls, Sublimity, OR

Straight out of a storybook, this gorgeous summer hike leads to a refreshing reward—at least 10 waterfalls, to be precise. The trail itself is an impressive 7.8-mile loop (which can be shortened thanks to cut-throughs) that travels through shaded, mossy forests. The hike itself is fairly moderate so most hikers should be able to enjoy the sites without a struggle.

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Solstice Canyon, Malibu, CA

This fairytale-like loop hike is only 3.2 miles and worth every step. During the summer, you’ll find shelter from the dense shade and refreshment from a small stream. The trail leads directly to the Tropical Terrace House that looks perfect for a princess (well, almost). The trail is also dog-friendly, so bring your four-legged friends along for the journey.

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Hole in the Wall at Rialto Beach, Clallum, WA

What summer hike is complete without a trip to the beach? In fact, this entire four-mile hike takes place right on the sand along the water’s edge. With no elevation gain, you can soak in the sights of nearby islands, wildlife, and rock formations, including the famed Hole in the Wall. 

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