Predictions for My Upcoming AT Thru-Hike

With under four months to go, I have read so much about the AT that I’m going a little crazy with anticipation. I started a list of predictions for next year to keep myself occupied. I’m sure current and past thru-hikers will find it laughably wrong (and hopefully I will too, after I finish).

Predictions by the Numbers


  • Newts (salamanders?) spotted.
  • Books read in the evenings.
  • People who pass me with annoying speakers blasting music.
  • Rattlesnakes encountered.
  • Days of unbroken rainy weather encountered.
  • Miles I walk at first before reconsidering everything.
  • Trails updates I post to The Trek, assuming I don’t get distracted.


  • Bear sightings.
  • Lifelong friends made along the way.
  • Random townspeople I’ll scare away when trying to shop in the local grocery store.


  • Pairs of shoes or boots used on the AT attempt.
  • Longest stretch without seeing another person.
  • Kinds of food I start to hate by the end of the trail.
  • Hours my train to Georgia is late.
  • Times I almost quit but then convince myself to keep going.


  • Lightning strikes: go look up Jennifer Pharr Davis.
  • Toenails lost (but countless blisters).

Other Expectations

Weirdest trail food consumed: some combination of tortilla wraps and citrus candy as I scrounge with other hikers to finish our food before resupplying.

Hitchhiking ability: Mediocre at first, but I am sure it’ll improve rapidly by the second month, because I have no other option for some towns.

Food preferences: I’ll become much less picky once I start burning through calories.

Trail hair: I will embrace the braid(s) in an attempt to hide the sweatiness and greasy roots.

I’m looking forward to revisiting these along the way, and once I’m finish I will certainly check off which came true. One hundred and eleven days to go!

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Comments 2

  • Haley : Feb 23rd

    Only 10 books??

    • Katharine : Feb 24th

      Probably too tired for more! A lot of audiobooks and podcasts though.


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