The first few days on the AT

First few days on the Appalachian Trail

Days 1-5 miles 730-786.
I started my hike in Troutville, VA on Friday, April 7th. My wife drove me up from our home in Georgia and dropped me at the Appalachian Trail crossing of Lee Hwy.
I wasn’t exactly sure which way to go, but figured it out.
Immediately after entering the woods the trail ascended about 1,400 feet vertically in the first four miles. It wasn’t a terrible hike and the rain was mostly holding off. A few hours in and I got to the first shelter on the trail. After checking the radar it looked like some big rain was heading our way and I decided to cut the day short and stay at the shelter. It turned out to be a popular decision as four other hikers decided the same thing. It got cold and windy but I stayed dry and warm.
The following day I hiked 11 miles to a crossing at the Blue Ridge parkway where I met another hiker who was staying in the woods near the overlook we were at. He ordered some pizza and garlic knots and I had a slice while I waited for a shuttle to take me to a hostel for the night.

I spent the next three days and nights being shuttled to various trail intersections and hiking with just a day pack to allow my legs to acclimate to the daily grind without carrying g a full hiking pack. Day 2 was 11 miles, Day 3 was 11 miles, Day 4 was 12 miles, and Day 5 (today) was 17.5 miles to the town of Glasgow, VA.

So far I have covered 56 miles in 5 days. Some interesting rock formations and incredible vistas have been the typical daily sights, and one primitive structure that I found really interesting (the primary / top photo on this update).

The typical day has been a quick breakfast sandwich eaten in the ride to the trail, hike for 3-4 hours, eat a snack and filter some water somewhere scenic on the trail, then another 3-5 hours of hiking to the pick up spot.

This coming week I switch it up to more regular hiking and staying in the woods. I have a small blister that formed on my toe, but it seems manageable and didn’t really impact my hiking so far.
I don’t have a ‘trail name’ yet which is a nickname that is usually bestowed on a person by another hiker, but I’ll probably get one soon. Until next time!

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Comments 3

  • Darrell Rice : Apr 12th

    Good job, Bill. Thanks for the update! -Darrell

  • Nate Cohen : Apr 12th

    Love the update and pics! Looking forward to hearing the nickname you’re given.

  • Kim Martin : Apr 12th

    So proud of you Bill! You’ve got this! ?


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