Things I’ve Learned After A Month On Trail

Knowledge Gained From The Trail

We are currently posted up in Erwin, TN after a near-0 day coming in.  I want to shout out ray who picked us up coming into town. He drives a van with casper the friendly ghost on it which is slightly famous among hikers. He stopped to pick us up when others literally sped up to avoid us. Ray saved us what would have been about a 5 mile walk into town. We are incredibly grateful for his generosity.

So since we are in Erwin that means that I have been on trail for about 5 weeks now. During this time we have had some trial and errors that I would like to share with you. Additionally, I will list some general things I have been taught.

The Good

  1. Snickers are the official trail snack of the AT.
  2. I can finally get my money’s worth at all you can eat buffets. They may actually be losing money on me.
  3. People are incredibly generous for the most part.
  4. Hammock camping is like being cradled by the gods and rocked gently to sleep.
  5. My give a shit is fading rapidly away.

The Bad

  1. I suck at resupplying.
  2. The rain makes you wet even if you’re waterproof.
  3. All shelters are full of mice and they will eat your shit if you let them.
  4. Hanging bearbags is not my forte.
  5. Hangovers are not trail friendly.

New Knowledge

  1. Ramen can be eaten multiple ways, dry or cooked.
  2. A 13 liter food bag has a capacity of about one week when packed correctly.
  3. A 13 liter food bag packed with one week’s worth of food is very heavy.
  4. Do not go to the store on an empty stomach ever. Like seriously ever.
  5. You can’t smell yourself when you’re outside, but avoid enclosed spaces.
  6. Cheap hotels really aren’t all that bad.
  7. Honeybuns are a superfood.
  8. Not everything in the guide is going to be there.
  9. Trail names are easier to remember than a real name.
  10. Zero days are not really zero days, because you’re still busy in town.

It’s been great

While there has been trial and errors I have no complaints. I am happy to be out here and experiencing the Appalachian Trail. I can’t wait to see what’s next. Also, I will be taking on the trail name, “Choctaw”. I could write a novel on why, but I think I’ll leave that a mystery. Off to Maine.

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Comments 3

  • Zach : May 2nd

    Your AYCE prowess is far from peaking too. Just wait until you hit the asian AYCE in Waynseboro. I’m surprised they still allow thru-hikers into the restaurant.

  • Greg : May 4th

    I love hearing about the experience.

  • Mark Stanavage : May 4th

    Fantastic! You sound totally stoked! Hope the rest of your hike is just as marvelous!


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