I'm a 2014 thru hiker trying to figure out how to navigate the real world from a fresh pair of eyes. I only planned on hiking from Springer Mountain to Harpers Ferry, but was still having a blast and decided to keep hiking. I learned what it meant to be a thru hiker on the fly and it was the best choice I ever made. I live very close to Harpers Ferry and am lucky to have the trail right in my backyard.
MSR's Hubba Hubba NX is easy to set up, spacious and lightweight--making my decision to switch from a single to a two-person tent easy.
Thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail was the best experience of my life. However, that doesn’t mean the entire experience was great. When doing nothing but hiking for six months straight, you get intensely bored and there are times when your mind borders on insane. Check out a few of the games I highly recommend, as well as some terrible mind games to stay away from.
When it comes to Appalachian Trail guidebooks, there are really only two options: The Thru-Hiker’s Companion by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and
Maintaining the Appalachian Trail requires a ton of work, like painting blazes, creating steps, controlling erosion and building bog boards. But there is work that goes on just out of eyesight along the boundary between Appalachian Trail lands and the private property it sometimes runs next to.
Aspiring thru-hikers should prepare themselves for an emotional roller coaster, and talk to other hikers when things get tough. Don’t deal with such a big decision on your own. Knowing that other people have similar struggles can keep you going.
To send yourself a mail drop when hiking the Appalachian Trail, you can mail packages to a post office or certain hiker-friendly businesses.
All backpackers make mistakes; I certainly did. Here's your chance to learn from mine. Make your own.
Weird ways adjusting to life after the trail is difficult.
Thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail makes you very thankful for the volunteers who maintain it. All it takes is a stretch of trail with very full
One of the aspects of thru hiking the Appalachian Trail I was most excited about was all the people I would meet along the way. I heard stories about