WhiteBlaze Pages 2022
A Complete Appalachian Trail Guidebook.
$5 for printable PDF, AVAILABLE NOW. $9 for interactive PDF(smartphone version)
Read more here WhiteBlaze Pages Store

Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 1 2
Results 21 to 38 of 38
  1. #21
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-01-2020
    Location
    Frisco, Texas
    Age
    53
    Posts
    10

    Default Options

    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Iím always amazed when folks in Texas choose to go east for their first backpacking trip.
    Speaking from years of experience, leaving from north of Tyler, I can be in New Mexico before dark & Backpacking the following day. Frisco is even closer.
    But hey, H Y O H. Iíll hike mine.
    Wayne
    To each his own. I've hiked in Colorado, NM, Utah, and a little in the Smokies, but the Appalachian Trail is bucket list for me. I need to get started to get more of the trail in, so I appreciate all of the words of wisdom.

  2. #22

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Iím always amazed when folks in Texas choose to go east for their first backpacking trip.
    Speaking from years of experience, leaving from north of Tyler, I can be in New Mexico before dark & Backpacking the following day. Frisco is even closer.
    But hey, H Y O H. Iíll hike mine.
    Wayne
    Yeah, but Texas is over 900 miles wide and nearly as deep in some places, so it depends what part you are in.

  3. #23
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-20-2013
    Location
    Roaring Gap, NC
    Age
    76
    Posts
    8,529

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Astro View Post
    Yeah, but Texas is over 900 miles wide and nearly as deep in some places, so it depends what part you are in.
    Donít I know it! I drove from Tucson to Lafayette, LA once. I didnít think that I would ever get out of Texas.
    If you start in the DFW area, itís not too difficult to be in the mountains quickly.
    I have the opposite problem now: NW North Carolina is 1,000-1,200 farther away from the Continental Divide. And a lot more big cities to navigate!
    Cheers!
    Wayne

  4. #24
    Registered User One Half's Avatar
    Join Date
    08-05-2010
    Location
    in a bus
    Age
    51
    Posts
    1,675

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Someone else will have to provide a link to the Forest Service bulletin detailing a very short bit of trail that requires a bear canister for overnight camping.
    Most people breeze through the mile or two and therefore donít bother with a bear canister.
    I suggest that you mark the area on a map and AVOID CAMPING THERE.
    Good luck and practice in your backyard if thatís possible.
    Cheers!
    Wayne
    He won't be in the area requiring a canister. That is north of Woody Gap, closer to the 24-30 mile mark

    Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
    https://tinyurl.com/MyFDresults

    A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world. ~Paul Dudley White

  5. #25
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-02-2007
    Location
    DFW, TX / Northern NH
    Age
    65
    Posts
    8,142
    Images
    27

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BusmasterJones View Post
    Good call. I plan to do this in the next 3 weeks close to home.
    You might consider a shakedown hike on the Ouachita National Scenic Trail in Oklahoma/Arkansas. The trail parallels the Talimena Scenic Drive (similar to how the AT parallels Skyline Drive in Shenandoah Nat Park). It's fairly close, about a 4 hour drive north from Frisco, and is the closest thing resembling eastern mountain hiking in our area. You can figure out some loop hikes using local trails such as Horse Thief Springs, etc, and get an idea of what AT shelters are like as well (without the crowds).

    https://friendsoftheouachita.org/wp/
    https://friendsoftheouachita.org/wp/...d-trail-guide/
    https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE...sm9_039448.pdf
    "That's the thing about possum innards - they's just as good the second day." - Jed Clampett

  6. #26
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-14-2020
    Location
    Evanston IL
    Age
    59
    Posts
    471
    Images
    4

    Default

    While June can be warm, you also get many hours of light. Suggest getting up early, before dawn, but when light out. Hit the trail as soon as you can. Given that, I would stay Woody Gap to Hawk Mtn is pretty attainable.

  7. #27
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-24-2012
    Location
    Murrayville, Georgia
    Age
    56
    Posts
    172

    Default

    Lots of good advice here. I'll be a little more specific as to this section. Woody Gap is a great place to start and as you are headed south, it's not too bad for the first several miles. I once hiked the section from Woody to Gooch Gap in the dark because we started Friday evening and set up a shuttle. The other advantage is that there are multiple crossings of FS 42 (Cooper Gap Road). I would suggest that if your family member has a couple of hours after the drop you off, they drive down to Suches and drive along FS 42 for a little ways (or all the way to Cooper Gap) to get a sense of it.

    You'll have good cell service any time you are on the ridge, no coverage at creek crossings. There is plenty of water on this section except from Justus Creek to Hawk Mtn. If you are at Cooper Gap or Horse Gap and you see a large green tank on a trailer, it is drinking water put there by the Army. (Camp Merrill is just down the hill from Cooper Gap and Horse Gap).

    As far as camping, you can camp anywhere along the trail. There are established sites at the shelters and the Justus Creek tent pads, but you'll likely want to make it to Hawk Mtn if you can. Just like there's not water between Justus Creek and Hawk Mtn, there's not great camping between those two places as well.

    The Georgia ATC has some good maps that show mileage and elevation profiles. You can find them here:
    Maps & Profiles - Georgia Appalachian Trail Club (georgia-atclub.org)

    Have a great hike!

  8. #28
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    03-08-2006
    Location
    Chamblee, GA
    Age
    58
    Posts
    1,550
    Images
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tennessee Viking View Post
    ...Nothing too hard other than the occasional steep hill.
    This could be said for the entire AT, but in Ga, its not occasional. Its all up and down. Its all a steep hill, just some longer than others.

    Quote Originally Posted by BusmasterJones View Post
    I'm looking at doing 2 days of hiking for my first overnight hike on the AT. I was considering Woody Gap (20.5 miles from the trail start at Springer Mtn) southbound to Springer Mtn. I'm middle-aged and in decent shape having hiked roughly 10 miles in Great Smoky Mtns with no issues but also no camping gear so a lighter pack. I'm not sure how much to hike in a day (10-12 miles?) or if Hawk Mtn would be too far in a day or not. How do I find good camping areas if not staying in a shelter in Georgia on the AT?

    I understand that most of the area I am hiking is through public land. Any rule of thumb advice or specifics around camping on GA public land is appreciated.
    Did I read that right in that you have no camping gear, so your pack is light? Meaning you would be looking to stay at the shelters? You should always have a shelter of your own, though there's plenty of people who hike shelter to shelter for that reason. Fact is that you don't know the shelter won't be full - if not thru hikers because its past that season in Ga, then Boy Scouts, etc. But since you're asking about camping, I must be wrong about that.

    Around 10-12 miles is a good target for someone with a full pack walking a mostly full day. Woody Gap to Hawk Mt shelter is a little over that, not that much of an issue in terms of mileage, but the 6-mile section before the shelter is dry and notoriously up and down. Plus, would be hard to get a full day in if doing a car shuffle to and from Springer. I'd probably go the other direction if doing 2 days-1 night and needing to stay at a shelter (Hawk). If you're camping, there should be plenty of tent spots along the way, but perhaps not that many you want to stay at. Lots of folks want to start at Springer, but its not the best option for a first time section hike in Ga.

    A better first time hike might be to go the other direction from Woody Gap and either stay at Slaughter Gap, just AT south of Blood Mt., or make it to Mountain Crossings for a Coke, Snickers, or whatever you care for and camp a mile up from there, leaving at Hogpen Gap the next day. Or reverse that and leave from Hogpen, with those same camping options with Woods Hole shelter as a reasonable stretch. This route is definitely more scenic than Woody-Springer.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  9. #29

    Default

    "Did I read that right in that you have no camping gear, so your pack is light? Meaning you would be looking to stay at the shelters? You should always have a shelter of your own, though there's plenty of people who hike shelter to shelter for that reason."

    I think he meant he hiked 10 miles in the Smokies without camping gear.

    Charlotte

  10. #30
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    03-08-2006
    Location
    Chamblee, GA
    Age
    58
    Posts
    1,550
    Images
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by xMagnolia View Post
    "Did I read that right in that you have no camping gear, so your pack is light? Meaning you would be looking to stay at the shelters? You should always have a shelter of your own, though there's plenty of people who hike shelter to shelter for that reason."

    I think he meant he hiked 10 miles in the Smokies without camping gear.

    Charlotte
    I see that now, thx. Knew I mustíve read that wrong.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  11. #31
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-01-2020
    Location
    Frisco, Texas
    Age
    53
    Posts
    10

    Default

    Here is an update. I did the Woody Gap to Springer Mountain parking lot with my daughter. It was a FULL two days without rising too early and it was bout 10 miles per day. I had a 35+ lb pack and there was a heat advisory the whole time. We camped at Horse Gap. It was a great experience! Here were our takeaways in case they help others:

    1. Refill ALL water containers at watering spots - We used The A.T. Guide by David AWOL Miller and it had all of the water spots accurately marked. However, a problem with the filtering (yes, I tried it before the trip and it worked) made us resort to iodine tablets. The iodine was a lifesaver because the filter flow rate was terrible. However, in switching to iodine, I didn't go back and fill all the Platypus bottles we had. We ended up doing some minor rationing on day 2 before we got to Hawk Mtn Shelter.

    2. My daughter - who college aged and in great shape - said she would definitely train in advance next time.

    3. Lighten the pack - I would definitely lighten the pack by getting rid of a few things I carried (camp shoes I didn't use, a book I brought). I might even consider hammocking to drop the tent weight. I was exhausted after 2 days of 10 miles each.

    4. Meal plan better - it was only one night and we had the first day planned well, but the day 2 lunch was poorly planned. The freeze dried food worked well, but it still took time to heat the water. Having a stable no-cook option for day 2 lunch would have been best.

    5. 10 miles a day was a bit much - We took a few side trips and certainly took advantage of the overlooks, but we would have hung out at Long Creek Falls if we were not trying to hit our pickup window near Springer. Reducing our mileage by a couple of miles (7-8 miles per day instead of 10 miles) would have given us more time to enjoy. Making a three day trip out of the 20 miles would have let us relax more and we would have gotten all the way to Springer Mtn, I'm sure. Stopping in the parking lot (a mile short of the Southern Terminus) was necessary because of our fatigue, but it was a regret to not make it to the southern terminus. Shorting the days would have done the trick.

    Thanks for all the guidance from each of you. I'm ready to do more overnights a little wiser than I was on this first trip.

  12. #32
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

  13. #33
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-10-2013
    Location
    Indiana
    Age
    59
    Posts
    540

    Default

    Loved that you took the time to write an update and reviewed the experience you had. That's the stuff that makes forums like this most helpful to others!
    fortis fortuna adjuvat

  14. #34
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-14-2020
    Location
    Evanston IL
    Age
    59
    Posts
    471
    Images
    4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TwoSpirits View Post
    Loved that you took the time to write an update and reviewed the experience you had. That's the stuff that makes forums like this most helpful to others!
    Yes, very nice to hear the results. Good learnings. If you plan to do more, really focus on light high quality gear. Maybe get cost a little more, but relative to much of daily expenses, a bargain in value delivered of more and easier miles. It might seem crazy, given your comments, but with a dialed in kit, and a couple of weeks experience that trip could be one day. Wouldn’t allow for lots of breaks but not heck bent for leather either. Not saying that is virtuous or not, just possible if you are considering more and longer trips.

  15. #35
    Registered User
    Join Date
    02-04-2013
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    4,307

    Default

    Congrats on a successful first trip -- nothing like getting out there are figuring out what works and what doesn't firsthand to dial in gear selections! It's a process and it is very individual.

  16. #36
    Registered User JNI64's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-23-2019
    Location
    Harpers ferry wv.
    Age
    58
    Posts
    1,892

    Default

    Good for you
    Good times and experience with great quality time with your daughter! Thanks for sharing!

  17. #37

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BusmasterJones View Post
    Here is an update. I did the Woody Gap to Springer Mountain parking lot with my daughter. It was a FULL two days without rising too early and it was bout 10 miles per day. I had a 35+ lb pack and there was a heat advisory the whole time. We camped at Horse Gap. It was a great experience! Here were our takeaways in case they help others:
    Thank you for the update. Very helpful to many.

  18. #38
    Registered User
    Join Date
    07-23-2022
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina
    Posts
    43

    Default

    Have fun is the Best Advice. For a two-day trip don't worry about your pack weight too much. I only worry about pack weight when I plan long distance hikes. On a weekend hike, I would load my car with all kinds of goodies. Most of the time I arrive my first day in late afternoon or evening and only hike the two or three miles from the car to the Shelter. LOL. I don't say this to sound inexperienced. I have hiked the AT and have the 22 mile a day experience, but if I had a weekend hike it would be all about play time and old-fashioned camping. I would even pack out a can of baked beans and a few hotdogs for the campfire that night. Maybe even pack smores. Make it memorable. There are no hard-set rules on what you can bring with you. I think the only people that need to worry about pack weight are the Thru-Hikers. I have been a thru-hiker but take more out of the trail just hiking for enjoyment. I don't like to look at my feet all day. I have always wanted to hike the trail with an RV and a companion hiker. It's never worked out quite that way but maybe one day.

Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 1 2
++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •