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  1. #1
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    Default Thru hike on hold indefinitely but...

    I can manage a section hike this year. I can do at least a month maybe 2. I'd like to do Clingmans dome and hike where the ponys are. The zoo, and Mountain crossings. (Could skip) I'd also like to hike the Smoky mountains.





    I also thought I could maybe hike somewhere else.

    I'm kinda scared that if I don't hike now I may never get to so still strongly leaning towards the AT.
    Presidential Range.
    White Mountains.

    Looking for itenerary suggestions. I can maybe take a car.
    Last edited by gracebowen; 01-12-2020 at 04:05.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by gracebowen View Post
    I can manage a section hike this year. I can do at least a month maybe 2. I'd like to do Clingmans dome and hike where the ponys are. I'd also like to hike the Smoky mountains.

    I also thought I could maybe hike somewhere else.

    I'm kinda scared that if I don't hike now I may never get to so still strongly leaning towards the AT.

    Looking for suggestions.
    Also if only going for a month is it feasible to take my car?
    Somewhere else? Closer to home? A day's drive from San Antonio?

    The Ouachita National Recreation Trail, 223 miles from Talimena State Park, OK to Pinnacle Mountain State Park, AR. Generally recommended to avoid in summer due to heat, water availability, ticks, etc. Trail maintenance, blazing, etc., can be spotty at times. Like the AT there are shelters (many fairly new) at regular intervals. Unlike the AT, don't expect to see a lot of other hikers. I'd inquire with FOOT, the Maintaining Club, as to the best time to hike, water logistics, etc., before going.

    More info below:
    https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE...sm9_039448.pdf

    http://friendsoftheouachita.org/wp/
    (Maintaining Club)

    http://www.ouachitamaps.com/OT.html
    (Maps)

    http://timernst.com/Products/OT.html
    (Guide)

    https://atlasguides.com/ouachita-trail/ (Guthooks)

  3. #3
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    Perhaps I should just ask for how to get in the highlights in four to six weeks.

    For the first week or two I can probably only hike 4 miles a day.

    I forgot about Shenandoah.

  4. #4
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    Thank you Bill. I'll consider it.

  5. #5
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    Oops. Double post

  6. #6

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    I suggest printing out a map of the Appalachian Trail and marking all the places on you ‘bucket list’. Then doing a bit of research where trailheads and shuttle services exist in those areas. With a car you could arrange a shuttle to drop you off at the start of each section. Then walk back to your car.

    i think this could be a fun alternative to a full thruhike.
    Follow My Hiking Adventures: http://www.youtube.com/SaraDhooma
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by gracebowen View Post
    Perhaps I should just ask for how to get in the highlights in four to six weeks.
    For the first week or two I can probably only hike 4 miles a day.
    While each section has its fans, and there's plenty of greenery and scenery to admire, if I could only hike the highlights, I'd include most of the high elevations, most of the rugged stuff, and I'd skip over places like Pennsylvania and New Jersey, even a lot of Virginia.

    4 miles a day isn't enough for the Whites or the Smokies due to distance between campsites/shelters/huts - and those are a couple of the major highlights. How much ground do you think you can cover after the first week or two? Roughly how many miles do you think you could cover in 2 months?

  8. #8
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    I don't know how far I can hike in a day till I get out there. Hoping to get up to 10-12 mpd.

  9. #9
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    I'd probably have to readjust my plans once I got in a full bucket list lol.

    I just thought of another place.

    I'll definitely need a list and a tentative plan

  10. #10

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    Snacktime and I did "the highlights" from GA to VA in five weeks, which included every icon of the trail we could get too. We even spent 2 days at Trail Days. It involved lots and lots of driving and no backpacking....just day hikes. We did have a great time and met EVERYONE and saw EVERYTHING (almost). If you plan to thruhike anyway, and are just trying to get a taste of the trail, I'd recommend this approach....lots of fun.

    An idea of our trip in no particular order: Approach Trail Arch at Amicalola, Springer Trailhead, Mountains Crossing (Neel Gap) and There and back up Blood Mtn, Wayah Bald Tower, NOC, Max Patch, Hot Springs, Uncle Johnnie's, Kincora, Laurel Falls, Clingmans Dome, Newfound Gap, Fontana Dam, Overmountain Shelter, Damascus & Trail Days, Grayson Highlands, White Top & Creeper Trail bike ride, James River Footbridge, Guillotine, McAfee Knob, Dragon's Tooth, the Homestead restaurant, SNP: Stony Man, Big Meadows, Elkwallow Wayside (blackberry ice cream), Snickers Gap, Keyes Gap, Harpers Ferry.

    I'm sure there was more, but you get the idea. We stayed at lots of hostels or slept in the car, but that was OUR adventure. You pick and choose what YOU want to see!

    Let me know if you still want me to forward the plan we discussed in the PM, or if you want to change your direction.
    Last edited by Teacher & Snacktime; 01-12-2020 at 12:12.
    ...the maddest of all is to see life as it is, and not as it should be. Cervantes

  11. #11

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    4 miles a day. About the only section you can find campsites that close together is Georgia. You really need to get into better shape first and be able to do 8 to 10 miles, which is the average spacing of shelters. Start doing a lot of walking.

    I would suggest the Springer to Damascus section. 500 miles, give or take a few. Can be done in about 2 months at a modest pace. Start early May so it's not too cold and stormy, but not yet blistering hot. GA is the easiest section to start out slow in.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    4 miles a day. About the only section you can find campsites that close together is Georgia. You really need to get into better shape first and be able to do 8 to 10 miles, which is the average spacing of shelters. Start doing a lot of walking.

    I would suggest the Springer to Damascus section. 500 miles, give or take a few. Can be done in about 2 months at a modest pace. Start early May so it's not too cold and stormy, but not yet blistering hot. GA is the easiest section to start out slow in.
    I'm going to try to get in better shape.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teacher & Snacktime View Post
    Snacktime and I did "the highlights" from GA to VA in five weeks, which included every icon of the trail we could get too. We even spent 2 days at Trail Days. It involved lots and lots of driving and no backpacking....just day hikes. We did have a great time and met EVERYONE and saw EVERYTHING (almost). If you plan to thruhike anyway, and are just trying to get a taste of the trail, I'd recommend this approach....lots of fun.

    An idea of our trip in no particular order: Approach Trail Arch at Amicalola, Springer Trailhead, Mountains Crossing (Neel Gap) and There and back up Blood Mtn, Wayah Bald Tower, NOC, Max Patch, Hot Springs, Uncle Johnnie's, Kincora, Laurel Falls, Clingmans Dome, Newfound Gap, Fontana Dam, Overmountain Shelter, Damascus & Trail Days, Grayson Highlands, White Top & Creeper Trail bike ride, James River Footbridge, Guillotine, McAfee Knob, Dragon's Tooth, the Homestead restaurant, SNP: Stony Man, Big Meadows, Elkwallow Wayside (blackberry ice cream), Snickers Gap, Keyes Gap, Harpers Ferry.

    I'm sure there was more, but you get the idea. We stayed at lots of hostels or slept in the car, but that was OUR adventure. You pick and choose what YOU want to see!

    Let me know if you still want me to forward the plan we discussed in the PM, or if you want to change your direction.
    Definitely interested.

  14. #14
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    I still have to decide how long I can go out for.
    I think given my current situation I may only have 6 weeks at most.
    I've been thinking about this alot since I first decided to try for a section hike.
    I think 3 months was a bit of wishful thinking.
    Last edited by gracebowen; 01-12-2020 at 14:04.

  15. #15
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    Do you hike with pups? If so the smokies May be difficult due to restrictions. I frequently do day hikes and overnight in van. Georgia has some pretty areas and easy to navigate. Along the blue ridge parkway there is a trail which is fairly level with lots of pullouts for cars while day hiking. Might be an option while getting trail legs back.

  16. #16
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    No dogs. I don't have trail legs to get back. Lol.
    This trip is because I like hiking I just don't get to go much at home. Part of my thinking is since I like hiking and camping I can take some time for me to get healthier and quit smoking.

  17. #17

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    4 miles a day sounds wonderful---it's what I do on my backpacking trips unless I get a wild hair and punch out a 12 mile day.

    A 6 week backpacking trip also sounds wonderful---42 days of righteous outdoor time and bag nights.

    Any place you decide to go is a-okay unless you're constricted by fees and permits and onerous regulations thereby crimping your 42 day trip, i.e. the Smokies.

    Thru careful study and experience I have found a normal backpacker can carry 30 days worth of food without resupply---but a 42 day food load would be a real challenge. But at 4 miles per day nearly anyone could carry 30 days worth of food and stay out with no interruptions. Sounds fantastic.

    I could draw you up a 42 day trip route on backpacking trails in Georgia/TN/NC and list campsites around 4+ miles apart---while using all 400+ miles of trails in this 3 state area---like starting on the BMT in Georgia and entering Cohutta wilderness and pulling all of its many trails and then go up into Big Frog wilderness in TN and do loops etc etc. And then head north on the BMT and enter the Bald River/Upper Bald River wilderness for many more loops---before climbing up to Whiggs Meadow and doing all the loop trails in Citico Creek/Slickrock/Joyce Kilmer wilderness---and ending your trip on the AT in Walker Gap above Fontana.

    It would be a "trip of a lifetime"; a real Expedition trip.

  18. #18
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    Not many of us can get out for more than a couple weeks at a time, but just about anyone can get out for a day or a weekend. I walk or run up to 6 miles on my lunch hour. Enjoy the local stuff until you can get out. Focus not on what you can't do, Grasshopper, and dowhat you can do.

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by gracebowen View Post
    I can manage a section hike this year. I can do at least a month maybe 2. I'd like to do Clingmans dome and hike where the ponys are. The zoo, and Mountain crossings. (Could skip) I'd also like to hike the Smoky mountains.





    I also thought I could maybe hike somewhere else.

    I'm kinda scared that if I don't hike now I may never get to so still strongly leaning towards the AT.
    Presidential Range.
    White Mountains.

    Looking for itenerary suggestions. I can maybe take a car.

    Thanks for the update, Grace, I’ve been wondering if you were hiking this year. If you decide to hike near East Tennessee, let me know and I’ll help you out

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traffic Jam View Post
    Thanks for the update, Grace, Iíve been wondering if you were hiking this year. If you decide to hike near East Tennessee, let me know and Iíll help you out
    You're welcome. Also thank you for your offer.
    I currently have Clingmans Dome on my list of places to see.
    Last edited by gracebowen; 01-13-2020 at 23:38.

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