OUTSIDE Magazine
  • Each year, OUTSIDE hosts its Best Towns competition to find the top spots in the country to work, run, eat, sail, paddle, drink, ride, and climb. More than 1.6 million votes were cast to determine the top 16. The winner? Chattanooga, Tenn. "Like the love child of Nashville and Silicon Valley, but with more single track, Chattanooga boasts a thriving startup scene and fiber optic Internet service as well as over a hundred miles of prime mountain biking track and a bevy of Class IV-V rapids," according to OUTSIDE. Following is 10 of the top 16 towns.
    OUTSIDE Magazine
  • Port Angeles, Wash. "As a gateway to the Olympic Peninsula, Port Angeles hosts a diverse mix of ecosystems: alpine environments studded with lakes, ultra-green old-growth forests threaded with whitewater rivers, and bays harboring orca and steelhead," said OUTSIDE.
    Russ Veenema/Port Angeles Regional Chamber of Commerce
  • Iowa City, Iowa: "Iowa City's bike-crazy culture has made it the gravel-grinding capital of the Midwest. Cyclists have tens of thousands of miles of unpaved roads in Iowa to traverse, and they can turn to one of the city's six bike shops for support."
    Iowa City/Coralville Area CVB
  • According to OUTSIDE, Eau Claire, Wis. is a top town. "Stop at this riverside city on a summer Saturday and you'll see families lazily tubing and cyclists tackling the 30-mile rail-trail system-plus, its thriving music scene counts Justin Vernon of Bon Iver among its alumni."
    Tim Abraham
  • Glenwood Springs, Colo.:"The Colorado and Roaring Fork rivers meet at Glenwood Springs, and on any given evening in the spring and summer, locals gather to raft Class II rapids and mellow flatwater through a 1,700-foot canyon."
    Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association
  • "Known for its SEC football, robust party scene, and cycling on endless farm roads, Athens, Ga. has also become an outpost of world-class eateries that combine the best of the South with an adventurous, farm-fresh ethos."
    Creature Comforts Brewing Company
  • OUTSIDE readers love Flagstaff, Ariz. "Flanked by 12,000-foot mountains and the largest contiguous ponderosa pine forest in the world, Flagstaff is an oasis in the Arizona desert where endurance athletes love to train."
    Flagstaff CVB
  • According to OUTSIDE, Beaufort, S.C., is "a sleepy Southern beach hamlet that provides the better part of a million acres for anglers and paddlers to explore, from salt marshes to brackish inland rivers."
    Creature Comforts Brewing Company
  • Pagosa Springs, Colo.:"This town's namesake springs are the deepest in the world, attracting 500,000 visitors a year. Recreation opportunities are unparalleled, with the 500,000-acre Weminuch Wilderness, San Juan River, and ski destination Wolf Creek all nearby."
    Visit Pagosa Springs
  • "Middlebury, Vt. townies and college students alike lived a charmed existence, with a 15-foot waterfall to kayak, the New Haven River to fish, 16 miles of single track on the Trail Around Middlebury to run, and even the Middlebury snow bowl to ski."
    Middlebury Mountaineer
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