It keeps on going right up into Canada.

Most hikers know the northern terminus of the AT is found at Mount Katahdin. Indeed, the official US Appalachian Trail completes it’s 2,167 mile journey from Georgia there in central Maine. But just as the Appalachian Mountains continue north into Canada, the International Appalachian Trail follows those mountains north, right into Quebec. The impressive length of Quebec’s section of trail reaches it’s climax as it runs north onto the Gaspesie Peninsula, the great finger of land that juts into the Gulf of St. Lawrence. For the local First Nation people, this was “the place where the land ends.”

Here the storied “AT” becomes the “SIA.” Quebec is of course the heart of French Canada, so the International Appalachian Trail is known in the province by its French moniker: the Sentiers International des Appalaches. It’s run along the crest of the spectacular Chic-Choc Mountains makes for a dramatic finish to one of the world’s great hiking routes. In truth, it doesn’t matter what you call the trail, this is some of the best hiking terrain in the East.

Now all you thru-hikers have your instructions: it’s time to finish the rest of the trail; it won’t give you cooties to cross the Canadian border.