For the past few months I’ve been quietly planning a trip to the mountains…a 6 month trip in fact. On March the 7th my brother Craig and I are going to Springer Mtn in GA to begin a thru-hike attempt of the Appalachian Trail.
For those that aren’t familiar with the Appalachian Trail, it is a 2,200 mile continuous footpath from Georgia to Maine. Completing the trail has been a personal goal of mine for a few years and I’m even more excited to try it with my brother.
Growing up, I’ve always enjoyed hiking and outdoor activity with my family. I first learned of ‘backpacking’ through a UNC new-student orientation trip to the Pisgah National Forest. Slowly growing my interest, I got into long-distance backpacking when I studied abroad in New Zealand, backpacker paradise. My first long-distance trek was the 500 mile Camino de Santiago in Spain which I completed in June and July of 2006. For the past couple years I’ve been eyeing the ‘grand-daddy’ of all trails, the Appalachian Trail, or simply called by it’s hikers, the ‘AT.’
I’ve hiked several sections of the trail already and volunteered the past two summers on work crews for the AT conservancy (the trail was built entirely by volunteers). By all accounts, thru-hiking the entire trail is a physical and mental challenge, albeit a rewarding one. The success rate of completion is very low, but I would certainly regret never trying a thru-hike more so than trying and failing to finish the entire trail.
Barring any injury (or desperation of the magnitude of the walk), Craig and I hope to make it to the trail’s northern terminus in Maine by late August/early Sept timeframe.
A couple friends have expressed interest in joining us and if you have any desire to try the AT, even for a day, I’d love to share a walk and the mountains with you.
Email will be the best way to get in touch with me. I hope to check
it every few days as well as send periodic updates of trail life through this blog.
p.s. check out www.appalachiantrail.org for more info on the A.T.