I. Am. At. The. Airport.
It’s time for another long walk! The experience of preparing for the AT has been drastically different than all of my other large trips. I’m more knowledgeable now and more seasoned in the game. I know what works and what my preferences are.
I have none of the pre-adventure jitters. Perhaps that is because the AT is in a lot of ways less of an adventure due to its minimal wildness. My main fear revolves around lymes disease. I’m worried that I’ll get it. It seems common enough among thru hikers that infections might be measured in percents, not fractions of a precent. I’d rather not get a life long illness this trip. Other fears? I’ll tire of the lack of alpine and deserts. It’ll be overly rainy.
What am I most excited about at this ticking hour? I’m excited about seeing the south, and the east. Both are places that I do not know. And, I’m exited about the people. I won’t be a party hiker, and still, it’s the relationships that draw me to this father of the long trails.
I had my farewell dinner (Steak Frittes) and cocktail (Alaska), weighed my pack (21 pounds, two days of food, no water), and put on my only pair of clothes. I have three weeks to hike, then two weeks off for a job interview. Honestly, I’d be thrilled to take the job and interrupt my hike north. If it doesn’t work out, I already gave a great plan for the next few months.
Note: Friends and family, I am carrying a satellite device and will send off my location each night. Want to see where I am on a map? Just ask.
It’s outrageous, but planning a 2,100 mile hike along the Appalachian Trail is easier than most things that you do.
Step 1: Buy the AT Guide: I recommend getting it loose-leaf. Take out the first quarter, give the rest to a friend to mail to you when you need it.
Step 2: Buy a plane ticket to Altlanta, Georgia.
Step 3: Reserve a shuttle to the trailhead.
Step 4: Buy 2-4 days of food. I bought two lunches, two breakfasts and two dinners.
Step 5: Pack your pack and go!