Ever since I read the book ‘Wild’ by Cheryl Strayer I have dreamed of hiking the Appalachian Trail. Well, actually my sense of adventure began a hell of a lot early when I was 7 years old and started watching “Grizzly Adams”. Do you remember that show? The lonely, falsely-accused murderer who ran away to Alaska to make friends with Gentle Ben the Grizzly Bear & sidekick Tacoma a Native American from the northwest.
I would watch that show and dream of a subsistent lifestyle far from society even when I was so young. Shows like “Little House On The Prairie” was also one of my favorites. I often feel like I was born in the wrong era and should have come and gone a long time before now.
Seeing “Wild” was the first time I saw that a woman could hike just as successfully as a man and that I’m not the only female who has dreams of this kind of adventure. I mean, its the 21st century, and I’m all about equal rights and all of that so I surprised myself by never contemplating that I COULD do it alone.
I live on the East Coast so the Appalachian Trail has always been close although different sections for different eras of my life. The outdoors is where I am the happiest whether it’s swimming in a crystal-clear lake or hiking along a rocky ridge so the idea of traveling a long distance like this is something I find very appealing.
The Appalachian Trail starts just north of Amicalola Falls State Park which is north of Atlanta, Georgia where you will the find the access trail. It starts at the bottom of Springer Mountain which is 3782 ft tall. The trail goes through Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire ending at Mt. Katahdin with an elevation of 5267 feet.
As you can see it’s a long way!
According to AppalachianTrail.og
Completing the entire 2,190 miles of the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) in one trip is a mammoth undertaking. Each year, thousands of hikers attempt a thru-hike; only about one in four makes it all the way.
- A typical thru-hiker takes 5 to 7 months to hike the entire A.T.
- After deciding when and where to begin and then registering your thru-hike, you will need to plan your resupply points and know the camping regulations along the A.T.
- Learn the camping regulations along the A.T. and the ATC’s expectations for hikers who want to be officially recognized as a 2,000-miler.
- In addition to these logistics, physical and mental preparations become important factors in a successful thru-hike. Learn more about all these subjects below.
If you are thru-hiking you need to register and you can do that from the site mentioned above. This is also a great source of all information Appalachian Trail related!
As for me: I have a lot of things to do before I could even consider a hike like this, but I’m willing to work hard to someday get there but first Alaska in 2020!
If you’re serious about hiking the Appalachian Trail then you know research and planning need to be your next steps. Lucky for you the research has already been done for you! That’s right Mila & Mark Whitman from MountainIQ.com has created a great resource guide for serious hikers who are considering hiking the Appalachian Trail