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VictoriaM
07-09-2006, 16:35
How many of us '07s are total newbs? I'm a city girl. My idea of roughing it is a three star hotel. But I've known I wanted to thru hike for as long as I've known what the AT is, and next year I'm doing it, experienced or not.

Anyone else here completely new to backpacking? I've done a few day hikes here and there, but that's about it. I'm hoping I can get out on some training hikes, but I'm not sure how possible that is. If there are any others here like me, I'd love to chat through e-mail or YIM. Maybe we can help each other prepare.

I'm tsjuster@yahoo.com, YIM tsjuster.

Singe03
07-09-2006, 16:51
I dont really qualify but I'm hoping to be out again in 2007 and I was pretty much an educated newbie in 2003. Keep reading these forums and you will know all you need to know, after that it just a matter of getting up every morning and walking north.

the_iceman
07-09-2006, 18:10
Victoria -

Desire is the key ingredient to success.

Do you research and get good gear. Focus on the big three, Pack, bag, tent. See if you rent any of this stuff for a trial run from a local outfitter. Get you pack last so you get the right size. Get a bag warm enough for your start date.

See if you can try before you buy. I have spent money on some stupid stuff. Read what everyone has to say, then find something you like. Post back here with brand and model to see if anyone has any experience with that product. This has saved me from buying rain pants I liked but found out here that they are not so waterproof.

What part of the country do you live in? You need to get out there for at least a few days. There is no substitute for experience. I have section hiked 700 miles or so and plan to thru-hike 2007. Here is what I find when I hit the trail.

Day 1 - feel great - too much excitement
Day 2 – wake up sore but excited. Draggin butt by the end of the day
Day 3 – Man am I sore and stiff to start but feel good by the end of the day.
Day 4 – The hurt is almost gone.

maxNcathy
07-09-2006, 19:00
Hi VictoriaM,

I am a novice hiker with only 4 days on the AT as experience.Before Cathy and I went to Va this April to hike near Mt Rogers and Damascus I read alot from trailjournals.com and chose equipment suggested by veteran hikers.Things went mostly very well for us.We both loved it and had a variety of weather.But my waterproof /breathable coat was a joke in the rain! I got very wet.It seems a poncho or Frog Toggs is the way to go...and I saw hikers with umbrellas that would have been good to have perhaps.
I go north March 19th 2007.How about you?

Sandalwood

Blissful
07-09-2006, 20:39
I'll tell you - for me, there is nothing like at least getting your feet wet in the backpacking arena. Like going out a few weekends. Trying out your stuff ahead of time to see if it works or not. Finding out what it's like to be cold, hot, wet, smelly, hungry, etc. I am really thankful for those experiences so hopefully very little will take me by surprise on a thru (I hope!).

B.Woods
07-09-2006, 21:03
VictoriaM,

A person can walk themself into shape on the AT, if they have the disapline to take it easy until they are into better shape. What is hard to learn, is how you and your equipment work together. That is what takes time.

Find a good state park near you that you can hike in. When you buy new equipment, go on a overnight to try it out. The more you are in the woods, the more situations you will be presented with were you will have to make decisions that could be serious.

I use the same amount of equipment no mater what my mileage. You still have to have a stove, something to sleep in, something to keep you warm. The mileage will take care of itself, Your equipment and your knowledge on how to use it will take care of you.

Bobby Woods

brotheral
07-09-2006, 21:23
Good luck Victoria !! Alot of good advice here. Get some experience !!
My girlfriend & I just came back from a camping weekend in Linville Falls, NC. I did my 1st backpacking trip in that area abt 10 years ago. I hauled 60+ lbs 2 miles down into the gorge. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry on my way out in the 90 degree heat, literally crawling at times..I had a Good laugh over it & learned from the "experience"....
Happy Trails

VictoriaM
07-09-2006, 21:23
Thanks for the tips. It's not so much my physical condition I'm worried about, since I'm in pretty good shape. It's learning my equipment (as B.Woods said). I'll probably start spending some nights out in the backyard once I get a footprint for my tent, just to start. My backyard is 5 acres of woods, so at least it'll be a bit of practice.

Sandalwood, I have to start back at college in September and want to take it slow, so I'll be leaving a bit before you. Probably 3/9. I'll bet you'll pass me soon after, so keep an eye out for the girly-girl all in pink! :D

max patch
07-09-2006, 21:36
Victoria, the year I thru'd I met a girl whose first night of backpacking was the day she started on Springer. She weighed about 90 pounds and started off with a 40 pound pack and did just fine. You'll figure stuff out as you go along -- have a great hike.

Wohelo
07-09-2006, 21:51
Hi Victoria,

I'm also very much a newbie. I did my first overnight over memorial day weekend this year in Shenandoah NP. I learned so much about what worked and what didn't in those few days. I highly recommend it. Here is my top ten things I learned on my first overnight:
1. Just because you can use Dr. Bronner's soap as toothpaste doesn't mean that you should. Also, it really sucks if it accidentally gets in your eyes.
2. Hiking in your trusty boots that don't blister your feet can indeed blister your feet when you strap on 35 pounds of weight.
3. Thru-hikers are neat and welcoming people. I met a whole cluster of them in my short trek on the A.T.
4. Velveeta shells and cheese isn't as good as it used to be when I was a kid, but snickers are awesome.
5. I need to get in better shape before I go backpacking.
6. When I sing bears will run away. I do not take this very personally.
7. I need to learn more songs to sing.
8. Hiking poles are wonderful things and saved me from falling down often.
9. If you start to worry that you've taken a wrong turn, you probably have.
10. After 7.5 miles in 90 degree heat, there is NOTHING better than a cold drink.

I will probably learn more in my next hike in another month. I am aiming for a 7 day adventure this time. Anybody have any suggestions for a good weeklong hike in New England for the end of August?

-Jennifer

Cookerhiker
07-09-2006, 21:53
Victoria, everyone here is giving you good advice. In case you hadn't concluded this yourself, WhiteBlaze is an excellent resource.

I notice that you live in NJ. I highly recommend Campmoor for your gear. It's well-worth a trip. Unlike any REI I've ever patronized, Campmoor has every style of tent fully erected so you can see what they actually look like. I'm a native of Northern NJ (Ridgewood) and until recently, made frequent trips to visit family during which I always stopped at Campmoor. Keep in mind they're closed Sundays.

VictoriaM
07-09-2006, 23:09
I was just over at Campmor the other day after Gander Mountain turned out to be a huge disappoinment. There's an EMS right next door to Campmor now, so I visited both. Loved Campmor, not so much EMS. My husband's family is in Glen Rock, so we're down that way all the time.

My gear right now:
Kelty Trekker 4300 (new, lighter pack coming soon)
Whisperlite International
MSR Miniworks
Marmot Pounder Plus women's
Eureka Spitfire
Many other bits and pieces

I haven't used any of it yet, but I no how to research and I'm pretty confident that I made good choices. Now I need to work on getting out there!

Thanks to everyone who has given such good advice.

Singe03
07-09-2006, 23:32
Gander Mountian is an excellent store for hunters and car campers, but sadly lacking in backpacking gear.

For clothing, honestly, dont forget Wal-Mart, they have sports clothing that wicks as good as anything else I've found for alot less than major backpacking brands. I also have to put a plug in for REI Outlet, I picked up a few things from there from time to time.

Get a hammock, dont worry about a tent footprint :-)

Seriously, I do not use a tent footprint with my tent, I had one, it went home before the Smokies. The tent was replaced by a hammock later on, but it does have 50+ nights in it with no tears in the floor and I've never had a problem even in fierce storms.

If you are not used to sleeping in the woods, the noises on the first few nights can be really distracting, or even distressing. Earplugs or even a small radio with headphones can make the first few nights go easier for you, in fact earplugs are near manditory if you plan to shelter alot. Hikers snore, hikers who claim not to snore, snore louder...

mtnbums2000
07-10-2006, 00:12
Backpacking for more than a few days is more mental than physical. Something that you will figure out when you are out their for a while.

Almost There
07-10-2006, 00:24
I would say don't go spending alot of money on gear. Instead use what you have and make sure you have money for gear when you hit Mountain Crossings at Neel's Gap. The guys there are great and you would benefit from their experience in getting some new gear after a few days on the trail. Many people end up switching out all their gear here. It's a common thing for many people to be carrying completely different gear by Va then the gear they had on Springer.

hammock engineer
07-10-2006, 00:39
I would say don't go spending alot of money on gear. Instead use what you have and make sure you have money for gear when you hit Mountain Crossings at Neel's Gap. The guys there are great and you would benefit from their experience in getting some new gear after a few days on the trail. Many people end up switching out all their gear here. It's a common thing for many people to be carrying completely different gear by Va then the gear they had on Springer.

I agree with this in terms of getting experience than going to a good outfitter. You will get conflecting answers from WB, but not all outfitters are equal. Locally I buy only footwear and small odds and ends at the outfitter. A good question to ask them would be what size pack you need, how much weight you should be carrying, and what type of footwear do they recommend. If they DO NOT recommend a smaller pack under 4000 ci (mine could not believe I was going to use the Granite Gear VP as my pack), give you options to keep your base weight well under 30 lbs, and suggest you consider trail runners or other non-hiking boats; then you need to try elsewhere. All of these things do not work for everyone, but they work for enough people that they should be presented as options to you.

Also shop around online, plenty of good websites. A great review website that a few here on WB write for is www.backpackgeartest.org (http://www.backpackgeartest.org) . It has reviews on almost everything by people who are not trying to sell you anything.

Hope this helps.

Singe03
07-10-2006, 01:49
I remember shopping at a place called Whole Earth in Houston when I was planning my thru attempt and the guy there telling me that knowing what he knew after his thru, he could do the AT with "this" pack (pointing to what I thought then was an impossibly small pack). Now, having done what I did (GA-NH, damned flu) I think I could use that pack or even go a hair smaller.

The people saying you will replace gear, send gear home, decide you can do without XYZ are absolutely right... The first weeks, in fact the entire trip are a learning process and some of the things you will learn are rather unexpected. I think part of the mental process successful hikers go through (I do consider my partial to be successful BTW, just not a thru) is learning how little they really need, and learning to need less. I think having some things at the beginning that are not really necessary provide a bit of a mental security blanket, and as you hike the need for that security blanket diminishes, so you can mentally pare down your kit still feel that all bases are covered. Permit yourself a luxory or two regardless of what anyone says about it, the experience is your's and no one elses. Just keep it reasonable, an extra 5 lbs may be a security blanket and a couple luxory items, an extra 20 may cause you to decide the whole idea sucks and go home.

Smile
07-10-2006, 07:12
You guys all have the right attitude and great suggestions!

Go for it!


Anybody have any suggestions for a good weeklong hike in New England for the end of August?

CT along the river somewhere is a nice start....or keep going up to Sages Ravine and up and over Bear mtn and beyond for a week or so. Very pretty, and good practice for the legs.

the_iceman
07-10-2006, 07:41
Kent to Cornwall Bridge is supposed to be one of the nicest and easiest sections of the trail. It is fairly flat as it runs along the river. From there to Lime Rock I am unsure of since it was rerouted to the Sharon side of the river since I last hiked it. I grew up in Cornwall so I know the area.

I just hiked from Salisbury Route 41 to Jug End road. This goes through Sage’s Ravine. This is the busiest section of the trail so bring a tent. Also no open fires in CT so bring a stove. We did it in early spring in the rain and still shared a lean-to Saturday night that was filled to the max. There are sweeping vistas and great views from the ledges.

CT is 58 miles from Bull’s Bridge to Jug End road. If you have time do the whole thing. Your first day will be sweet and you will end up with some climbing and views.

MOWGLI
07-10-2006, 07:47
Kent to Cornwall Bridge is supposed to be one of the nicest and easiest sections of the trail.

Easiest? Perhaps. Nicest? I don't think so. Not even close. It could still offer a nice walk for the beginner however.

the_iceman
07-10-2006, 09:38
I was thinking in terms of an inexperienced hiker. I remember going with a group of newbies up Webster Cliff in 90 degree weather, not so nice. Or recently, navigating Sages Ravine with a first timer in early spring with ice all over the trail while it was raining – a real challenge. (she is coming back out for a second trip though).

My idea of beauty after a hard day is a 15 degree descent through a pine forest to the campsite.

Doctari
07-10-2006, 09:53
This has been hinted at & mentioned several times, but I'll try to put it all in one:

PRACTICE WITH YOUR GEAR, before you hit the trail.

Set up your tent/hammock/tarp several times in ideal conditions to get familure with it, then set it up at night, then with no flashlight, even try blindfolded. If you get a thunderstom blowing in, wait till it gets as bad as likely, then set your tent up in it. Should a T-storm not be in your future, get a "friend" to hose you & tent as you set up, with the goal that they are going to try to stop you with the water only. Harsh? Yep, but the weather will not wait while you set up camp. :D Change clothes in your shelter, do this several times.

Light your stove WAY OUT IN THE BACK YARD. In a controled location (if your stove needs/does this) take it apart as if fixing/cleaning it, put it back together & test it. Get good enough that you can do it in the dark. Actually cook with your stove! When that T-storm rolls in, after setting up your tent, try cooking while it rages about you. when cooking, measure how much fuel you use each time, this will allow you to (somewhat) judge how much fuel you will need per fill up. In spite of what your stove manufacturer may say, get a windsreen for your stove!!!

Seam seal everything that is supposed to be waterproof. Test it in the rain/shower/garden hose.

Break in your hiking boots/shoes. Wear them to work, around the house, grocery shoping, etc. Experement with different socks, liners & combinations of the above.

Spend a few nights in your sleeping bag / under your quilt. Change clothes in/under it.

None of the above will take that much time but will pay for themselves in comfort / safety on the trail. A dark stormy night at the top of some Mt in Ga is no place to learn you can't set up your tent except on a flat backyard in full sunlight. Or that after your first 20 mile day (congratulations) your stove is clogged & you havn't a clue as to how to fix it*.


Have a great hike.



Doctari.


* search for "Alcohol stoves" they have no moving parts.

Frosty
07-10-2006, 09:54
1. Just because you can use Dr. Bronner's soap as toothpaste doesn't mean that you should.Classic. Thanks for the chuckle.

MOWGLI
07-10-2006, 09:58
Classic. Thanks for the chuckle.

I've brushed my teeth with Dr. Bronners. It's not terrible - and sure is a big improvement over my mother sticking soap in my mouth as a kid. :eek:

Singe03
07-10-2006, 11:10
Oh, here is one...

Learn to change the batteries in your headlamp, in the dark...

It will save you half an hour of fumbling around, dropping batteries, putting them in backwards, dropping everything again, flicking your lighter around on the ground looking for the back of the battery case and generally doing alot of cussing on a roadside in WV at 2:00AM while trying to night hike to escape the 96 degree days....

Not that I know from experience or anything ;)

Doctari
07-10-2006, 11:42
Oh, here is one...

Learn to change the batteries in your headlamp, in the dark...

It will save you half an hour of fumbling around, dropping batteries, putting them in backwards, dropping everything again, flicking your lighter around on the ground looking for the back of the battery case and generally doing alot of cussing on a roadside in WV at 2:00AM while trying to night hike to escape the 96 degree days....

Not that I know from experience or anything ;)

Good one, put me to mind a few more:

Learn to pack up EVERYTHING in total darkness, just in case you can't change the batteries in your light. That means every thing in it's place everytime. Here is where having OCD can come in handy :p

Practice getting out your light in total darkness. In camp ALWAYS put your light in the same place, everytime. I put mine with my TP, which I also put in the same place everytime.

Murphy's law states that: Anything that can go wrong will, at the worst possible moment. I believe that Murphy was an optimist :D

Being prepared for the situation, dosn't mean having more gear, it is (on the AT at least) a state of mind. "My light is broke, Oh well, I can set up camp in the dark so don't need it" can go alot towards an enjoyable hike.

Pain is inevitable, misery is optional.


Doctari.

SGT Rock
07-10-2006, 11:42
How many of us '07s are total newbs? I'm a city girl. My idea of roughing it is a three star hotel. But I've known I wanted to thru hike for as long as I've known what the AT is, and next year I'm doing it, experienced or not.

Anyone else here completely new to backpacking? I've done a few day hikes here and there, but that's about it. I'm hoping I can get out on some training hikes, but I'm not sure how possible that is. If there are any others here like me, I'd love to chat through e-mail or YIM. Maybe we can help each other prepare.

I'm tsjuster@yahoo.com, YIM tsjuster.

Good luck to you on your upcoming hike!

One thing I would like to suggest is you go do some overnight or multi night shake down hikes before you decide to quit a job and/or school, let the lease expire, and cut off everything to go do something for 6 months you have never even tried. I think you can still make it even if you don't, but it would give you a more realistic expectation of what you are going to be doing before you throw caution to the wind. And it will probably give you some experience that will make your first few days of the thru-hike a little easier.

I hope to see you out there somewhere next year.

LULU
07-10-2006, 12:14
Hi Victoria,
I was there few months ago for the first time and I have a lot of thing to tell you so you don't have to suffer too much!!!

1. you need a backpack for women the others are too big and the hurt you shoulders

2. Do not fill out you water bladder at the start, you find more water later

3. Bring a lot a dry food ( like,eggs, tuna,chicken,rice on the pounches) I was starving all the time

4. For drink a found this tiny pack of koolaide with sugar already. Only you have to do is pour unto a botlle of water.

5. Energy bar really help.

6. New boots try to used before you go because they give you a lot of blisters.

7. Socks only for hiking, that help too.

8. If you can't live without coffee like me try the gourmet french press, only need to add coffee and hot water.

9. If you like drink wine, they have this tiny plastic botlle and the cups Dicks sport store have a nice one that you put them together.

10. Good company!! is nice to have a great husband or friend to enjoy the trail but if you do not have one you found nice people around the trail .

We are going again by october fest on Helen. Our goal is start where we finish on Springler Mountain to Neels Gap.

Good luck.

Lourdes

Frosty
07-10-2006, 12:39
Learn to pack up EVERYTHING in total darkness, just in case you can't change the batteries in your light. That means every thing in it's place everytime. Here is where having OCD can come in handy :pOkay, I give up. What's an OCD?

SGT Rock
07-10-2006, 12:48
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. You know, those people who break down if you hang clothes on a hanger the "wrong way"

Singe03
07-10-2006, 14:01
I was led to understand by military friends that OCD comes with the rank of SGT? (Just kidding, I greatly respect those in the military, but I DID hear from some friends in the army a few years back).

Actually, religously putting everything where you can find it (and in the case of certain emergency items like epi pins, letting your companions know where to find it in your pack) has definate benefits. I'm pretty obsessive about how I arrange things when I setup camp and how they go in my pack.

SGT Rock
07-10-2006, 14:12
Yes, it helps to have OCD, but I would have to take pills to induce it instead of control it. But I know a few people...

Frosty
07-10-2006, 16:09
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Thanks for letting me know. I can't stand not knowing what intials stand for. I just have to drop eerything and learn what they mean. Ever since Doctari posted OCD, I've been trying frantically to find out, looking through dictionaries and searching the internet. I missed work today and didn't pick up my kids at school. Who knows what would have happened if I hadn't found out.

mweinstone
07-10-2006, 17:07
welcome your newness.15, alone in portclinton by the side of a greyhound bus pulling away from a flagstop.i hike the at by written instructions from ian hemphil my classmate. he copyed the guide book i later learned. at pocohantas spring i slept . to the pinnical i hiked. and i did not know what a spring was or to even bring water! i packed orange juice and milk in water bottles and brought sandwitches and slim jims. i slept in a 2 doller hore(tube tent), and i slept in a cotton bag and wore jeans.i carried a 2 dollar plastic poncho and a 5 dollar backpack and tons of matches dipped in wax and therefor made unlightable.

and all i say to you after my long times learning the wild places is,....we are equal and allways will be. your drive makes you a survivor and a learner. if we share that ,we walk in the wild places as equals.you wanted to do this so long cause its alot of who you are.special folks love the at. and love of the at is the beginning of excellence in mountaneering.and i say here and now,....minnisota smith was as you are and he is an able mountaneer to be for shure. he has a wonderful base of wilderness exsperience to build on as you too will.

roxy33x
07-10-2006, 19:38
my husband and I have no experience at all... the most we have done is one overnight... and i sprained my ankle on that trip. But i do believe that all i need is determination and the pure will to do it...
if i will it, it will happen!

Amigi'sLastStand
07-10-2006, 20:57
welcome your newness.15, alone in portclinton by the side of a greyhound bus pulling away from a flagstop.i hike the at by written instructions from ian hemphil my classmate. he copyed the guide book i later learned. at pocohantas spring i slept . to the pinnical i hiked. and i did not know what a spring was or to even bring water! i packed orange juice and milk in water bottles and brought sandwitches and slim jims. i slept in a 2 doller hore(tube tent), and i slept in a cotton bag and wore jeans.i carried a 2 dollar plastic poncho and a 5 dollar backpack and tons of matches dipped in wax and therefor made unlightable.

and all i say to you after my long times learning the wild places is,....we are equal and allways will be. your drive makes you a survivor and a learner. if we share that ,we walk in the wild places as equals.you wanted to do this so long cause its alot of who you are.special folks love the at. and love of the at is the beginning of excellence in mountaneering.and i say here and now,....minnisota smith was as you are and he is an able mountaneer to be for shure. he has a wonderful base of wilderness exsperience to build on as you too will.
Put down the pipe.

Wohelo
07-11-2006, 10:05
Thanks icemanboston and Smile for the great suggestions! I was playing around with the idea of Salisbury into MA, so I am pleased to know that this area would be a good section to tackle for a relative newbie.

onicoe
07-11-2006, 17:25
my outdoors life basically ended after girl scouts. so while i have some experience... it's been a very long time. i'm new all over again. [:

Amigi'sLastStand
07-11-2006, 22:02
I've brushed my teeth with Dr. Bronners. :eek:

But your supposed to spit it out. If not, it can lead to a bad case of liberalism.
Just kidding, Mowgli!:D;)

Imayroam
07-22-2006, 17:23
Hi Victoria, I'm sort of in the same boat as well. Although I have a lot of camping expierence and day hikes under my belt, I really have yet to tackle any real back-packing. It seems kinda crazy to go out there with what I consider as myself as a little too inexpierenced, but I think that just adds to the excitement and adventure for me. We just have to make sure we really do our homework, and pace ourselves. BTW, if you want to talk on instant messenger, my aim screename is Braves1r0b1n.

frieden
07-23-2006, 09:12
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. You know, those people who break down if you hang clothes on a hanger the "wrong way"

Yeah, it took me a long time to realize I was like that. I grew up with white glove inspections and the quarter bounce, and couldn't understand why everyone wasn't that way. I could have been blindfolded, and known exactly where a specific blue Tshirt was in the dresser. Now, I don't even have a dresser. What clothes aren't hanging up, are in a plastic trash bag on the floor - socks on the left, bras and underwear on the right, and Tshirts and shorts in the middle. A person can't change overnight, you know!

You can accomplish almost anything with the glorious practice of precision - except for blending into society. It can really improve your hiking time (less time getting in and out of camp).

weary
07-23-2006, 11:05
Don't worry about a tent foot print just yet. You can set up your tent without one, if you make sure that you are not setting up on any sharp rocks, sticks, brambles, etc.

Start spending as many nights outside as possible. Practice cooking outdoors, setting up your tent, etc.

If you don't have a sleeping bag yet you can use a blanket or two if you are just sleeping in your backyard.
I've worn out several tents -- or decided they had design or weight, or other problems, and replaced them. I have yet to use a foot print, or have a serious floor problem. The tent I use the most has about 4,000 miles on it -- and rough useage from several grandkids. No foot print. And still no indication that a foot print would have done anything useful.

Far more important than a tent foot print, is a few nights on a real trail.

Weary

Omarwannahike
09-11-2006, 19:51
Awesome.
First time camping was last july at Franconia Notch... obviously being a NY'r I thought I could even f'up a black bear. However, growing up in a small carribbean country came in handier, how? I would eat anything.

Looking up at the ridge, I thought the AT would be a good walk, so we decided to do it.

I have hiked bits and pieces here and there, Long Path and Shore Trail in NJ and NY, Bear Mountain, a bit up in the Catskills, some in the UK (Where I wrestled mud and a cow, and then sat on the stones for tea and mud sans cow)

I say listen to all these people on whiteblaze.net.... inspiration and confidence oozes from them.

STEVEM
09-12-2006, 19:41
Victoria, Have you considered the Catskills. Lots of great hiking not far from your home in NJ. The ADK publishes a guidebook and map set available at all local outfitters. This area is a great place to test yourself and your equipment.

Check out The Catskill 3500 Club. www.catskill-3500-club.org (http://www.catskill-3500-club.org/) . You can train for the AT and do some peakbagging at the same time (I'm #1575).

Try to bushwack Friday Mtn and Balsam Cap in February. Now theres a way to learn how much you don't know. Or at least that was my experience.

Good Luck

Slingshot
09-25-2006, 14:17
When I started my thru hike april '06 I had zero hikng experience but it all worked out :). Everyone on the trail is really helpful and there really isnt anything too complicated about living in the woods.

Cherokee Bill
09-25-2006, 20:28
:welcome 1: Buy the best gear you can aford, it might last the whole trip.
2: Take care of your gear & it will take care of you.
3. Research, research & research some more.
4. Pay careful attention to WEIGHT.
5. Hike your own hike, & let others do the same.
6. Know how to use all your equipment BEFORE you leave home.
7. Take some over night hikes alone, and get the fell of the outdoors. As crowded as the AT is, you will see nights ALONE. Go out & get use to this before you leave for Georgia.
8. ALWAYS PREPARE FOR THE WORST, & HOPE FOR THE BEST.
9. Remember, the mountains make their own weather & it can change FAST.
10. Always know where you are and know thw quickest way out for help.
11. A "Thru-hike" will provide memories for a life time and you will meet folks you'll NEVER forget.

ENJOY!

Cherokee Bill
09-25-2006, 20:30
:welcome 1: Buy the best gear you can aford, it might last the whole trip.
2: Take care of your gear & it will take care of you.
3. Research, research & research some more.
4. Pay careful attention to WEIGHT.
5. Hike your own hike, & let others do the same.
6. Know how to use all your equipment BEFORE you leave home.
7. Take some over night hikes alone, and get the fell of the outdoors. As crowded as the AT is, you will see nights ALONE. Go out & get use to this before you leave for Georgia.
8. ALWAYS PREPARE FOR THE WORST, & HOPE FOR THE BEST.
9. Remember, the mountains make their own weather & it can change FAST.
10. Always know where you are and know thw quickest way out for help.
11. A "Thru-hike" will provide memories for a life time and you will meet folks you'll NEVER forget.