I’ve slept in a lot of huts and hiking shelters, but no matter how humble or beat up they are, they’re always a great comfort at the end of a long day of hiking. When I was getting back into backpacking a couple of years ago, I avoided shelters, preferring to pitch a tent or tarp. But hiking the Long Trail weaned me out of that habit fast, because the shelters were the only dry places to escape the incessant Vermont rain!
Since then, I stay in every shelter I can, as long as they’re not too crowded. Mice, spiders, holes in the wall, and leaky ceilings don’t bother me in the least. Despite their imperfections, shelters and huts, help keep the darkness at bay and protect hikers who slumber within. Here are a few of my favorites from travels near and far.