View Full Version : Cost of section hiking
I was just wondering, for those of you who have hiked it, about how much would it cost to hike from GA to Damascus? I already have a 3000cu backpack, propane stove, tent, ect. Your knowledge would be most helpful.
Buck a mile, essentially. Call it $500. Assume a food budget of about $5 per day, and an average mileage of 15 miles. Thats about 32 days of actual walking, or food of about $160. Assume 5 town days, even at hostels, with 3 meals a day, and you've got about another $30 a day, or another $150 (or more). Beer and other oddities will be another $90 (honest). That's $400. Another $100 for safety margin.
hmmmm? i am curious about the propane stove,,,,I have 30 years of stoves in my collection but the propane stove is reserved for sea kayak camping due to its weight.....more info please for the curious here.
Well, for what it's worth, I spend $368 this year between Springer and Damascus. I tried to go fairy cheap. No hotel stays. I spent money on food, meals, hostels 5 times, etc. My only days off were 2 days for Trail Days. Also, didn't buy replacement boots or other gear on this section.
Generally speaking, $1.00 per mile is considered spartain these days. $1.50 per mile will give you a much more comfortable hike, if that's your style.
I went from Springer->Damascus this May in 28 days, stayed 5 nights in doors (2 at Elmers, 1 at Uncle Johnny's, 2 at the Place), and spent, probably, around $500 for the entire trip. That covered two Grayhound tickets as well. I dried most of my own food, so that was actually rather cheap. I spent a fair amount of coin in Hot Springs drinking beer and eating. Damascus was similar. Excluding transport, assuming you do not spend anytime in hostels/hotels, don't eat town meals much, and source alot of food from hiker boxes, you could probably get from Springer to Damsascus for less than $100. I don't think I could recommend this for most people. I ran into a thru hiker named Shrek that was moving forward at about 7 miles a day and eating pretty much only out of hiker boxes. By the time he left Hot Springs, he had spent, I think, $7.
For what it's worth, a breakdown of my costs between Springer and Damascus is:
Hostels (5 nights) $42
The other includes white water at NOC, mountain bike rental in Damascus, and Takoma Ted's CD.
Totals don't include the $60 cab ride from Gainesville. Time wise, it took me 33 days to hike to Damascus. I would have been there 3 days earlier if I had not taken time off for Trail Days.
How's Shrek doing? He was a good guy who I shared a shelter with in the Smokies.
Shrek is the kind of hiker everyone cheers for, myself included. I ran into him on the way down into Hot Springs and at a shelter about 16 miles from Hot Springs a couple of days later. He was in good spirits, although his knees were bothering him a bit. I didn't see him again after that.