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  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    08-12-2009
    Location
    Spring Lake, MI
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    54
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    1,452

    Default Decision: Newfound Gap to Elk Park, NC.... OR North Adams, MA to Glencliff, NH???

    While I have completed over 950 miles sectioning the A.T., my husband has only done about 50 - the Roller Coaster, last year. He just found out that he can take time off work at the end of this month, and he wants to hit the A.T. with me for about 200 miles.

    Last year, we did it kind of "kushy" - meaning we slack-packed a couple days, hit two hotels... (Completed the 50-ish miles in 4 hiking days).

    He understands that this year will not be that way. Is anyone able to suggest which will be more "gentle" on him? (FYI: due to finances, we will only be able to go to one or two hostels during our time on the Trail...).

    (These two areas adjoin my "gaps," which is why they are the options!). Thanks for your input!!!!

  2. #2
    Leonidas
    Join Date
    04-26-2016
    Location
    Birmingham, Alabama
    Posts
    882

    Default

    Having been in TN and NC early July the past 2 years, personally, I would go north. Not sure that either would be much easier than the other. At a glance, the MA-NH section looks to have less elevation change than the NC section(I could be wrong).
    AT: 471 mi

    Pinhoti Trail: 254 mi

    @leonidasonthetrail

  3. #3
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
    Join Date
    10-22-2002
    Location
    Winston-Salem, NC
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    57
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    Default

    VT would be a great hike in the summer. Two weeks at the end of June would be perfect.

    But the elevation changes up North are way worse than in the South, in my experience.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  4. #4

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    The elevation changes are just quicker and closer together in Vermont

    North Adams to Glencliff would be nice. Still a bit muddy and buggy, but better then the heat and no problem with finding water. Wild flowers should still be in good shape.

    Logistics are straight forward. Green Mountain house is a good place for your hostel stay and first resupply. It might seem a little soon to do that, but RT 4 and the bus to Rutland is a long way from North Adams and Manchester center is about half way.

    Resupply again in Rutland using the $2 bus from the Inn at the Long trail. While the Inn at the Long Trail is a great place to experience, you can time it to get to town and back on the trail the same day.

    Then it's a few days Hanover. Time it right again and you can resupply as you walk through town. Note that water at the first shelter North of Hanover (Velvet Rocks) is a long way off and hard to find. It's actually easier to find in the morning after you head north on the AT for a bit. So, tank up a little before leaving Hanover.

    A few days later you'll be in Glencliff, where you'll probably want to spend a night at the hostel there to get cleaned up and arrange for a shuttle to where ever you need to go.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  5. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    08-12-2009
    Location
    Spring Lake, MI
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    Default

    Thank you all for responding! My hubby asked me to check with you about the "physical aspect" of each area. Is one much more strenuous than another? (He nurses an old knee issue - but we do not see that as an issue... just looking for the easier way out for him this year! Thanks!

  6. #6

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    Both of those choices are physically demanding in one way or another. I actually find the long, drawn out descents in the south are more taxing on my knees then the short steep ones we have in the north. YMMV.

    It really comes down to a toss of the coin. There are good arguments for and against each of those two sections. Which one is easier for you to get to and get home from? That would be the key issue for me.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  7. #7

    Default

    My vote is up north. Neither stretch is easy but Vermont has some great views, and some very nice little towns to check out. IF a budget is tight however, and more time will be spent on trail then recouping in hostels/ hotels then you might as well go down south and wait until the pocketbook is fuller to go up north and really enjoy it.

    My thinking is that I know that at the end of this month down here in the south you will pretty much feel like a steamed tortilla 24/7. Possibly further up north would be much less humid.
    Trail Miles: 3,715.9
    AT Trips: 67
    AT Map 1 Completion: 1818.9 Springer, GA - Franconia Notch, NH
    AT Map 2 Completion: 263.8 Gaps From GA - PA

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