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  1. #41

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    how many South bounders do you think skip the Approach Trail?

  2. #42

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    on my first thru-hike i would probably just do the approach trail with no regrets. if you go to the gym and get a good work out in, you're not going to regret it afterwards. But if you're on a diet and eat a snickers bar,well. Either way enjoy your hike! and don't let anyone put their hands inside your Gorp bag!

  3. #43

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    I was happy I did the approach trail. Just seemed like the proper way to start, rather than backtrack from a forest road. Just my HO, YMMV, HYOH . . .
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  4. #44

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    FYI - you can minimize the backtracking by taking the Benton MacKaye Trail to the summit rather than the AT. It connects to the AT just a couple of tenths of a mile from the top. Or, conversely you could drive to Nimblewell Gap and hike the last bit of the approach trail. All of this presupposes that you're just not that in to walking and wish to minimize that aspect of your trip.
    Quod gratis asseritur, gratis negatur.

  5. #45
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    Umpteen, oodles, mega opined threads on whether or not to hike the Approach Tr already existing. Enjoy the day perusing the comments. There is no universal consensus. This is hiking. You get to - HAVE TO - make your own decisions based on you and your hike.

  6. #46
    Leonidas
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    If I were going to thru hike I would probably skip it like I did last year on our first section. The logic being if I were going to thru, I would be starting at the Pinhoti and going to Katahdin so I would be missing a bit of the trail unless I backtracked anyway. If I were starting over sectioning or skipping the Pinhoti, I would probably do the Approach as my dad was pretty disgruntled having to drive his new vehicle on the FS road to drop us and my kids off at our van.
    2016 2017 AT: 177.6 mi

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  7. #47
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    If you're sure of your goal to make the trek, you really can't beat the hospitality at the Len Foote Hike Inn, part of the Amicalola State Park, and just a little divergence from the Approach Trail and no harder. It'll add a couple of miles to your day, but they serve ice tea, lemonade and snacks to day and thru-hikers alike IF you don't show up when it's time for them to serve their paying guests. Give them a shout to find if anything's changed about time to arrive. It'll be a nice rest and you'll be rejuvenated for the rest of the trip to Springer and the first night out.

  8. #48
    Registered User somers515's Avatar
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    There is someone on whiteblaze that has a funny signature line that this debate reminds me of.

    "Mt. Katahdin would be a lot quicker to climb if its darn access trail didn't start all the way down in Georgia"

    Now if I only could find out who first came up with that line!
    LT End-to-Ender 2017; AT from Lehigh Gap to Hudson River; NH 16/48
    "Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won't come in." - Isaac Asimov

  9. #49
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    Love it! Would love to claim it as my own. Wouldn't you?

  10. #50
    Registered User BuckeyeBill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by somers515 View Post
    There is someone on whiteblaze that has a funny signature line that this debate reminds me of.

    "Mt. Katahdin would be a lot quicker to climb if its darn access trail didn't start all the way down in Georgia"

    Now if I only could find out who first came up with that line!
    You can check here

    Let me know if this works.
    Blackheart

  11. #51
    Registered User Dex's Avatar
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    I have read all the questions about, should I or not. Hike your own Hike. My wife and I decided to do it just because in our minds, our adventure stats at the Approach trail

  12. #52
    Wanna-be hiker trash Sarcasm the elf's Avatar
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    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  13. #53
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    I didn't do it. Everyone I have talked to on the trail this year said they wish they would have skipped it.

  14. #54
    Registered User Lyle's Avatar
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    Short answer, yes, it's a pleasant hike.

  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by mostlyfreebird View Post
    ...I haven't really heard much feedback about doing the 8 mile approach trail to Springer, or skipping it. What do you think? What worked for you, what are you planning on doing?

    Just wondering why some people choose to do it or not. Thanks! Happy hiking

    LOLLOLLOLOL.......

    Obviously hasn't Googled it or did a search on WB for the landfill high heap of opining on it

  16. #56
    Registered User Last Call's Avatar
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    The first A.T. shelter is right behind the visitor center, Max Epperson shelter....for the life of me I don't understand why one would want to skip the 1st 8 miles of the A.T. and be driven up the mountain to Springer.....

  17. #57
    Wanna-be hiker trash Sarcasm the elf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Last Call View Post
    The first A.T. shelter is right behind the visitor center, Max Epperson shelter....for the life of me I don't understand why one would want to skip the 1st 8 miles of the A.T. and be driven up the mountain to Springer.....
    Because a lot of first time backpackers who aren't used to climbing hillls get intimidated by it and then spread rumors that it is much harder than it is.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  18. #58
    Registered User dudeijuststarted's Avatar
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    i did probably the most unorthodox alternative thru ever done on the AT, and the approach trail was the last piece of it. i was pleasantly surprised by it and think the ascent of the falls is awesome. yeah the climb will be hard work for a beginner but the campsite on springer mountain is pretty nice and if you take your time, drink plenty of water, you'll have a great first day. another advantage is there will be shuttles in and around the springer parking lot the next morning should you discover you need to make a gear adjustment, treat some blisters, whatever. i recommend approach trail. whatever you choose, have a blast, that is a beautiful section of trail.

  19. #59
    Getting out as much as I can..which is never enough. :) Mags's Avatar
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    I enjoyed the Approach Trail when I did the BMT.

    My simple advice? Do what is easiest for the person nice enough to give you a ride. When Idid the AT, the person who gave me a ride wanted to hike the ~1 mile to Springer.

    When I did the BMT, it was easier to drop me off at the approach trail.

    The trail only took me ~three hours for what it is worth. A steady, but not extraordinary, pace.
    Last edited by Mags; 04-03-2017 at 16:08.
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  20. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Last Call View Post
    The first A.T. shelter is right behind the visitor center, Max Epperson shelter....for the life of me I don't understand why one would want to skip the 1st 8 miles of the A.T. and be driven up the mountain to Springer.....
    it's not the AT

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