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  1. #1
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    Default 1-week section hike (my 1st) Demascus VA to Pearisburg VA or Pearsiburg to Daleville?

    I will be making my 1st section hike during the 3rd or 4th week in March, 2013. I have 6 or 7 hiking days and thought I could cover about 90 miles. I was thinking about Demascus VA to Pearisburg VA, or Pearsiburg VA to Daleville VA. Seems like they are scenic/nice hikes but have limited re-supply options.
    Does anyone have any thoughts, concerns, words of wisdom or other approx 90 mile sections that are good 1st hikes? Thanks in advance for your time.

  2. #2

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    Well, if you go from Damascus to Pearisburg you will enjoy the VA Highlands with the wild ponies, it's really beautiful through there.

    If you hike Pearisburg to Daleville you will enjoy Dragon's tooth, McAfee Knob and Tinker Cliffs. Beautiful as well.

    Both sections have limited resupply options. I just did a "stash" for some Southbound hikers. It worked out well for resupply.

    If you need assistance with that there are plenty of shuttle people etc... that can help you out. Hope this helps.

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    Registered User eagleJ's Avatar
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    Damascus to Pearsburg is over 163 miles.

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    I did Davenport Gap to Erwin (~100 miles) end of last April. Trail goes through Hot Springs about 3 days in -nice trail town. It's a very enjoyable patch of woods with Snowbird Mt and a view of the Smokies, Max Patch, Big Bald -above Erwin, but my favorite -the exposed knife-ridge just before Jerry's Cabin Shelter. That much further south, your conditions may be a little more spring-like in late March.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by JJJ View Post
    I did Davenport Gap to Erwin (~100 miles) end of last April. Trail goes through Hot Springs about 3 days in -nice trail town. It's a very enjoyable patch of woods with Snowbird Mt and a view of the Smokies, Max Patch, Big Bald -above Erwin, but my favorite -the exposed knife-ridge just before Jerry's Cabin Shelter. That much further south, your conditions may be a little more spring-like in late March.
    I loved that section as well!! I forgot about that exposed knife-ridge. I LOVED it! I was very happy to be on it on a beautiful day!

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    Default 1-week section hike (my 1st) Demascus VA to Pearisburg VA or Pearsiburg to Daleville?

    Damascus to Pearisburg is 160ish miles. Hiked it last summer and had a blast. Nantahala to Davenport is a good 90ish stretch as is Davenport to Erwin or Erwin to Damascus. Anywhere you go will have a great experience. The most important thing is to just get out there and do it!! Best of luck

  7. #7
    Registered User Dr. Professor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdraus View Post
    I will be making my 1st section hike during the 3rd or 4th week in March, 2013. I have 6 or 7 hiking days and thought I could cover about 90 miles. I was thinking about Demascus VA to Pearisburg VA, or Pearsiburg VA to Daleville VA. Seems like they are scenic/nice hikes but have limited re-supply options.

    Does anyone have any thoughts, concerns, words of wisdom or other approx 90 mile sections that are good 1st hikes? Thanks in advance for your time.
    Pearisburg to Daleville is a nice section. If this is your first section hike, don't count on being able to manage more than about twelve miles a day. Even that could be very difficult if your gear is too heavy. You shouldn't have too much trouble, but there are several bail out options toward the end of that section if you're running a little behind schedule.

  8. #8
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    Since I see this is your first post, let me be the first to welcome you to Whiteblaze. : Agreed with Dr. Professor on distance and difficulty. You could resupply at the PO in Catawba (off trail) and if you were running low as you climbed the Dragon's Tooth and McAfee's Knob you'll appreciate the lighter weight. It's a totally beautiful section.
    1,500 miles down. Keep on keepin' on.

  9. #9
    Registered User RED-DOG's Avatar
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    The Terrain is about the same on either section, But i think i would prefer Pearisburg to Daleville.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by mdraus View Post
    I will be making my 1st section hike during the 3rd or 4th week in March, 2013. I have 6 or 7 hiking days and thought I could cover about 90 miles. I was thinking about Demascus VA to Pearisburg VA, or Pearsiburg VA to Daleville VA. Seems like they are scenic/nice hikes but have limited re-supply options.
    Does anyone have any thoughts, concerns, words of wisdom or other approx 90 mile sections that are good 1st hikes? Thanks in advance for your time.
    For a ~90 mile stretch, I agree with others that Pearisburg to Daleville is superb; I've often recommended it in other threads. There are some challenging ascents but it's not 100% up-and-down. McAfee Knob is one of the most-photographed spots of the entire AT.

    But if you still want to include Damascus, Grayson Highlands, and Mt. Rogers in your hike, another option is to start in Tennessee at US Route 421, hike 15 miles to Damascus and then another 75 miles to Atkins where the AT crosses I-81. This also has the advantage of an easy start since 421 to Damascus isn't too difficult.

    You can obtain shuttles around Damascus by contacting Lone Wolf here on WB.

    Quote Originally Posted by JJJ View Post
    I did Davenport Gap to Erwin (~100 miles) end of last April. Trail goes through Hot Springs about 3 days in -nice trail town. It's a very enjoyable patch of woods with Snowbird Mt and a view of the Smokies, Max Patch, Big Bald -above Erwin, but my favorite -the exposed knife-ridge just before Jerry's Cabin Shelter. That much further south, your conditions may be a little more spring-like in late March.
    That's a very nice stretch but I don't agree that its more southerly location translates into more Springlike conditions. The average elevation is much higher, especially going over Big Bald which exceeds 5,500'.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by waasj View Post
    .... Nantahala to Davenport is a good 90ish stretch as is Davenport to Erwin or Erwin to Damascus. ...
    Since the OP is new, he/she may not be aware of the requirement for reservations in the Smokies.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJJ View Post
    I did Davenport Gap to Erwin (~100 miles) end of last April. Trail goes through Hot Springs about 3 days in -nice trail town. It's a very enjoyable patch of woods with Snowbird Mt and a view of the Smokies, Max Patch, Big Bald -above Erwin, but my favorite -the exposed knife-ridge just before Jerry's Cabin Shelter. That much further south, your conditions may be a little more spring-like in late March.

    I did this plus a little more during March a couple of years ago and that would be a great stretch to hike. Bear in mind there will be a lot of college spring breakers on the trail and I would expect half of your days to have awesome weather with a few miserable days thrown in.
    Pain is a by-product of a good time.

  13. #13
    Registered User CentralVaAt's Avatar
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    I'm considering doing the Pearisburg to Damascus hike this summer as well. I've done Pearisburg to Daleville...very nice section of VA trail with nothing too extreme, but wonderful views.

    HikermomKD, are there any decent resupplies between Pearisburg and Atkins, if I break my trip in half?..tell me about the stash you did. What is hidden in the woods? That would be an awesome idea!

  14. #14

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    Hey CentralVaAt... there are no resupply places that I'm aware of between Pearisburg and Atkins except for Bland US21/52 Bastian Va. A guy named Nigel Collins helps out hikers with shuttles etc... he's in Bastian. VA

    The stash worked like a charm... 2 buckets hidden in the woods, took pic and written directions to hikers via cell phone. They got the "stash"- we have the buckets back. That area doesn't have good resupply at all. Awesome idea! PM me if you need some more info. ...

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by CentralVaAt View Post
    I'm considering doing the Pearisburg to Damascus hike this summer as well. I've done Pearisburg to Daleville...very nice section of VA trail with nothing too extreme, but wonderful views.

    HikermomKD, are there any decent resupplies between Pearisburg and Atkins, if I break my trip in half?..tell me about the stash you did. What is hidden in the woods? That would be an awesome idea!
    Quote Originally Posted by HikerMomKD View Post
    Hey CentralVaAt... there are no resupply places that I'm aware of between Pearisburg and Atkins except for Bland US21/52 Bastian Va. A guy named Nigel Collins helps out hikers with shuttles etc... he's in Bastian. VA

    The stash worked like a charm... 2 buckets hidden in the woods, took pic and written directions to hikers via cell phone. They got the "stash"- we have the buckets back. That area doesn't have good resupply at all. Awesome idea! PM me if you need some more info. ...
    You could send yourself a maildrop to the Big Walker Motel if you're willing to stay there one night; per the Companion, they accept maildrops for guests.

  16. #16
    Registered User Kingbee's Avatar
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    Trent's grocery is a half mile west of the trail between Bland and Pearisburg if you need to top off supplies.

  17. #17

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    Trents is off Rt 606, about fifteen trail miles N of Bland

  18. #18
    Registered User Kingbee's Avatar
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    For a few buxks, you can camp in the field behind Trent's, but save your money and camp by Dismal Falls a few miles north.

  19. #19
    Nalgene Ninja flemdawg1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingbee View Post
    For a few buxks, you can camp in the field behind Trent's, but save your money and camp by Dismal Falls a few miles north.
    They also have hot showers, and some campers set up. Not sure how much they costs to stay in. SHowers are $3.

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