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  1. #1
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    :banana 14 State Challenge

    Newboots here. Looking to start hiking the AT for both physical reasons and trying to re connect with a person I use to be.

    At this time unfortunately I do not have the funds to complete a thru hike or even long distance section hikes. But I did find the 14 state challenge list and I wanted to start there. I have been planning a trip to Harpers Ferry for awhile now and want to kick off the challenge with the 3 state challenge listed in the log for West Virginia.

    Has anyone attempted these challenges before that could give me some tips or thoughts on how they went for you.

    Thank you.

    Keep stepping, its best for the soul

  2. #2
    Registered User egilbe's Avatar
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    Isn't a 2000 miker patch a 14 state challenge? Just go hiking. Start out with day hikes, combine with an overnight or two. Stretch those to three or four night trips, then weeklong trips. Pretty soon, you have the AT completed.

    I hike most every weekend, not always on the AT and not always overnighters. I pick something interesting, a destination hike, and go do it.

    As Lone Wolf is apt to say...

  3. #3

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    Link to what I believe the OP is referring to:

    http://www.appalachiantrail.org/home...tate-challenge

    I'm usually a sucker for these types of completion challenges, but not crazy about the social media requirement (Instagram or Facebook) on this one. That said, if it gets people off the couch and exploring someplace new, that's not a bad thing -

  4. #4
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    +1 to egilbe's post.

    Start with the parts of the trail closest to you. As your interest and experience grow, venture outward. Use vacations to hike and walk more trail miles. Some day if you really get the bug and have the means, take additional time off and take it further...

    There are many section hikers here on Whiteblaze who've finished the entire AT in that manner -- ten, twenty years (or more) worth of vacations, time-offs, between-gigs, that sort of thing.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rafe View Post
    +1 to egilbe's post.

    Start with the parts of the trail closest to you. As your interest and experience grow, venture outward. Use vacations to hike and walk more trail miles. Some day if you really get the bug and have the means, take additional time off and take it further...

    There are many section hikers here on Whiteblaze who've finished the entire AT in that manner -- ten, twenty years (or more) worth of vacations, time-offs, between-gigs, that sort of thing.
    It'll be 10 years for us. We did our first section in November 2010 with no intention or thought or desire to complete the whole trail. Now here it is 2017 - the years fly by! And we're on track to finish in late summer of 2020. Currently at 65%, aiming for 75% by years' end. One step, then another. One weekend, then another...

  6. #6

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    The 14 State Challenge was developed by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy after we met people in our visitor center who were already doing this on their own and seemed very gratified by the endeavor. We just put a name to it.

    We've met so many people who have said, "I can't leave my job and family for 6 months, so I can't hike the Appalachian Trail," or "I'm not athletic, I could never walk on the Appalachian Trail."

    The Appalachian Trail is a unit of the National Park System, designed for all Americans. There is so much fascination with thru-hiking, that opportunities for day-hiking, or even the restorative power of a brief visit to a breathtaking vista or the charm of a friendly small town is overlooked.

    The goal of the initiative is to inspire people to just get out there and start exploring, and discover the wonder and diversity of landscapes along the A.T.

    There are no requirements. The social media and passport are just suggestions. We plan to update the website later this year to make this clearer.

    We now have a patch available. Currently it's only available at the ATC visitor center in Harpers Ferry, but we will eventually have it on our website.
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  7. #7
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    Thank you so much to everybody for the replies. I cant wait to get out on the trail this week and start living what I have been talking about for a couple years now. With everything that goes on in life it is hard to find inspiration to just get out for you and enjoy the life that is beyond 4 walls and a paycheck.

    Reading stories, books, blogs and watching videos just makes it seem that much better to get away.

    I am excited to start the journey.

    Keep stepping, its best for the soul

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