This Week’s Top Instagram Posts from the #AppalachianTrail

Welcome to the weekly roundup of the best Instagram photos of hiker trash and treasures on the Appalachian Trail. 

Summer is in full swing. That means AT hikers are getting the best of the best that hiking has to offer: beautiful cool mornings with a side of endless mud, and magnificent vistas thoroughly plagued by little flying, biting devils.

This week’s photos were taken from June 27 to July 1 after careful selection from the #TrektheAT hashtag.

 

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Day 86: 28.4 miles. Woke up early, put the wet hiking clothes back on, and got a quick start out of camp went up and over the second peak of Bemis Mountain in the fog, moving frustrating slow on wet and steep slab rock. Finally hit some trail we were able to move on and cruised the rest of the way to Route 4. Headed to the Hiker Hut to pick up a resupply package and hangout for a while. With a now fully loaded pack we went up the big climb to Saddleback Mountain. Clouds and fog blocked the views for most of the climb but thankfully cleared when we got to the top. Rode the ridge down and back up to the top of The Horn, then had another steep descent and climb up and over Saddleback Junior. Unfortunately the clouds and fog blocked the views for the last two, but I rolled into camp dry so I didn’t mind

A post shared by Keenan Scribner (@keenanscribner) on

 

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Ok, so here’s what happened. Pennsylvania is known as the land of rocks. Being somewhat of a heads-down hiker, it never quite phased me. In fact, at lunches or corral spots, my trail mates will often open conversations with, “How about those those rocks, huh?” To which I will respond, with all earnestness, “What rocks?” ⁣ ⁣ That ended yesterday, after a dozen of us tucked into a much-too-small shelter to wait out an aggressive thunderstorm. It held for longer than we had hoped, until about 5 p.m., when I began a swift hike toward our night’s camp. I was the first to arrive, and therefore the first to discover that the shelter was packed to the gills with thru-hikers and weekend warriors alike. ⁣ ⁣ With sleeping pads and bulky packs and bodies spilling out of every corner, there was no room for the six members of my trail family. I began to scout for tenting options, which lead me down a steep blue-blaze trail (marked by the same kind of blue slash I shared in a photo of a few days ago). For the first time in 25 miles, at the end of a very long and hot day, I was unencumbered by the weight of my pack. Ironically, that’s when I managed to slide across a rock still damp from the earlier rainstorm. I tumbled forward and down the steep trail, bracing myself with my hands and landing hard. I felt the snap in my fingers immediately. Fuck, I said as my face slid through the dirt. Fuck, I said again, as the shock turned to hurt. I took a pause, and then a breath, and then a mental inventory. Fuck. I can’t move my fingers. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. ⁣ ⁣ I stayed there on the ground for several moments, and then hobbled back to the shelter, where Grayson was waiting for me. We ended up hiking another mile into town and slept in a community park, where my fingers transformed into little blue sausages. I dreamt about hospitals and machines. In the morning, several generous hikers ported me to and from a robust urgent care facility. I received lots of nurturing advice and curious glances, and, after a series of X-rays, I was dispatched with an encouraging prognosis: deep swelling cushioned several torn ligaments, but my bones? They were rock-solid, just like Pennsylvania.

A post shared by tina “cash money” currin (@tinacurrin) on

 

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Probably the only campsite on the #AppalachianTrail that came with both a sunset *and* a viewing of Toy Story 4.

A post shared by Marvel 💫 (@marvel.hikes) on

 

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AT, Day 88: A few hundred miles back, the six of us—maybe there were five of us then—were crowded into a cheap hotel room when I had a lasting realization: Our room would smell much better (see: not exactly like purgatory) if we could find anywhere else to put our shoes. Ever since, we stack them in the hallway or breezeway or stairwell wherever we go, epitomizing the concept of “hiker trash.” Arriving in town is full of tiny realizations and interesting frictions like this, or of reckoning your trail life with the world around you and wondering if you should apologize for it. Like how you can spend hours in a Walmart, walking the aisles in search of a trail food that will give you a flavor besides chocolate and peanut butter. Or that McDonald’s will supply you with as many ketchup packets as you want for your pack, so long as you ask nicely. Or that Red Robin—somehow, full during lunch service on a Wednesday in suburban PA—has a thru-hiker’s fantasy menu item in unlimited French fries. Or that the largest Cabela’s in the world, located in a labyrinth of strip malls in Hamburg, Penn., will drive you from trail and back to it and to most points in between, because they want your business badly. (And that said Cabela’s has an enormous taxidermic collection, including a family of my favorite mammal, the muskox.) Or that most people don’t walk around town in cat pajamas. We ended our 13.3-mile roll into the picturesque Port Clinton by noon with a torturous descent, following some mild mud and rocks. We shuttled into Hamburg for the night, where Crusher rejoined after an exhausting game of catch-up. I went to Red Robin twice and bought an unnecessary but great late-afternoon coffee that actually wasn’t instant. I had a free sample at a Russell Stover store and asked for two packets of hot mustard at McDonald’s, essential adds to my condiment kit. I read a transcript of the Democratic debate while drinking a late-night beer and suddenly pined hard for the woods. Going into towns on the Trail is a lot like visiting Las Vegas—you love it for a spell, and then you’re ready to leave, with new calories but without layers of caked-on dirt. AT: 1219.4 (1228.2 total)

A post shared by Grayson “Gunner” Currin (@currincy) on

 

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Day 119 – 18.1 miles, milepost 1945.2! Another solid day of hiking in swampy Maine. For some reason the physical exhaustion is catching up to me, but we are zeroing today to rest for the final push! The day yesterday started early, wet trail and foggy, but weather cleared up and warm up by end of day. Hiking Baldpate’s east peak was awesome, the fog and sun peaking through the dense clouds made for a very scenic ascent. The trail to summit goes straight up on a exposed slab rock, and with all the rain the night before it was a little slippery. The views from summit were amazing thought! The day warm up, probably the warmest it has been in a while. We close the day with Moody Mountain…crap that was hard for me, I was so tired and thirsty! The trail goes straight up, and even thought is was a short climb it felt sooooo long, there were so many rocks steps, rebars, wooden ladders, yup hard 💩 or me just been exhausted…what ever the case it was I was totally beat! Fortunately the descent wast not bad, we cruised and got to parking lot by 330…so for 25 minutes we kindly feed the black flies and mosquitoes 🤬. Shortly before 4pm our hostel host picked up us…hot shower, food waited for us😋. Surprisingly this hostel is one of the best we have stayed…is truly designed for us hikers by a hiker🙌 thanks Yukon!!!!. . . #xiscohikes . . . . . . . . #hiker #hiking #backpacking #thetrek #trektheAT #ATclassof2019 #AT2019 #appalachiantrail #appalachiantrail2019 #thruhike #camping #appalachianhikers #nature #senderismo #adventure #outdoors #wanderlust #keepitwild #hikertrash #hikingadventures #travel #mountains #photography #naturephotography #explore #mountains #journey #latinohikers #hikethewhites #4000footer

A post shared by FS (@_travelstoomuch_) on

 

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Day 89 | Hiked 23.9 | Mile 1135.3 | Had a little rain last night but cleared out by 10pm. Started the day out with some decent climbs and had a tight squeeze in between some huge boulder fields. After the last climb it was all downhill into the Cumberland Valley. It’s an 18 mile section of flat farmland passing through numerous towns, farms and roads. The trail went right into Boiling Springs which had a nice walk along the river and a few restaurants. Stopped into Cafe 101 for lunch and got a plate of tacos. Grabbed a few things from the gas station and headed back on trail. It was really easy walking in a very narrow trail corridor and was able to get a new PR in my total miles in a day, almost 24. Feet feel good, legs feel good and basically stopped for the day to eat dinner. Had a section that past right threw a cow pasture and all the cows were hurdled up right on the trail, (pictured) I tried walking around them about 20-30 feet away. As i got closer they bum rushed me, not scared of me at all and circled me, getting there noses all up in my personal space. I eventually used my trekking poles to keep them at a distance and started walking towards the fence. They all ended up following me, the light brown one in the picture was right up on me the whole time i was in there, kinda creepy but started laughing about it after i left the pasture, people must feed them when they roll through. Passed by a few parks with people partying and scored a beer from a group of people canoeing, winning. Ended up setting up camp at a stealth spot right off trail, decent spot with a good breeze. Have a good night everyone. Thanks for all the love and support. 🏕🚶‍♂️⛰ Hike on… #2019appalachiantrailthruhike #appalachiantrail #atthruhike #atnobo2019 #georgiatomaine #at2019 #traillife #backpacking #adventureawaits #explore #exploremore #optoutdoors #thruhiker #katahdinorbust #ichallengeyoutoalloutlife #thetrek #backpackerradio #TrektheAT

A post shared by Scott Kuehn (@scott.the.bald) on

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