A surprising number of U.S. counties have 100% rural land—702, in fact. To determine the 50 most rural counties in the U.S., Stacker analyzed population density data from the 2010 Census Urban and Rural Classification. The 2010 Census is the most comprehensive, reliable, and recent urban-rural classification available.
According to the Census Bureau, rural land encompasses any land that isn't an urban area. To be considered an urban area, a place has to have a densely settled core of census tracts or blocks and count at least 2,500 people, at least 1,500 of whom must be residents of non-institutional buildings. Areas with 50,000 people or more are considered urbanized areas, while areas with between 2,500 and 50,000 people are considered urban clusters.
This list of the 50 most rural counties in America can help to contextualize what life is like in these regions.
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