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orions_knight
09-06-2010, 17:52
First off, hello all. ive been trolling this site for sometime in prep for my 2013 thru-hike(after my navy contract is up). Love this site!

But to the point. A friend and I have been entertaining the idea of opening an outfitter/hostel for runners/bikers/hikers and the like somewhere near the trail. He being from NC and myself being from GA, we want to stay somewhere in the south close to our roots but still be able to serve a majority of outdoors enthusiast.

So my questions are:
Taking your knowledge and experience of the trail into account, where would you most like to see an outfitter/hostel along the AT?

What would you like to see offered there as far as supplies, activities and accomodations are concerned?

How far from the trail would you consider a reasonable distance for walking and/or if you had a ride to and from provided by the outfitter?

Also, feel free to add any information or comments you might have. I have thick skin so lay it on me. This is just an idea right now but I want to know if its even worth considering before i get ahead of myself. Thanks all!!

10-K
09-06-2010, 17:55
The south is pretty much hostel-ized....

This came up a week or so ago.. I think Port Clinton, PA would be a great place for a hostel with a bit of outfitter thrown in.

Forewarned though.... Cabelas is just down the street in Hamburg. There was an outfitter in Port Clinton before that. Don't know if it's a coincidence or Cabelas put them under.

Cabelas does not have a hostel nor a for fee shuttle service.

mountain squid
09-06-2010, 19:23
http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-signs087.gifto WB and thanks for the service (I'm a retired Chief).

As far as the hostel/outfitter goes, I would highly suggest spending some time as a caretaker at an already established hostel beforehand. You'll learn alot and probably find out whether or not you would really like to do it.

Hikers are very demanding and when there are twenty of them . . . well, that can be very challenging.

Check out the Hiker Hostel (http://hikerhostel.com/) in GA. They are already established and have a great thing going.

See you on the trail,
mt squid


Ps. I spent 2 years on the USS Orion.

Memphis Tim
09-06-2010, 19:44
Springer to Damascus is pretty well covered but I would think that there would be plenty of opportunities in VA-Pearisburg, Bland, Marion, Catawba, Troutville, Glasgow, Front Royal. Hanover, NH is in desperate need of a good hiker hostel but unless you are a billionaire lawyer specializing in zoning issues that is probably unworkable. As for a how-to, spend a week here: http://www.hikerhostel.com/ and copy everything that Josh and Leigh do.

Lone Wolf
09-06-2010, 20:42
monson.....

Bags4266
09-06-2010, 20:45
I would first look into a state where zoning laws, building codes are a little lax. Then zero in from there.

Memphis Tim
09-06-2010, 22:33
monson.....
Really? I had no complaints about Shaw's.

Lone Wolf
09-06-2010, 22:36
Really? I had no complaints about Shaw's.

shaw's ain't an outfitter

Memphis Tim
09-06-2010, 22:43
Oops, was looking right at the header "outfitter" and thinking hostel. Yeah, a shakedown outfitter like Mountain Crossings except for sobo's just might work.

4eyedbuzzard
09-06-2010, 23:20
Oops, was looking right at the header "outfitter" and thinking hostel. Yeah, a shakedown outfitter like Mountain Crossings except for sobo's just might work.
Pretty short season in ME, though, and nowhere near as many SOBO's as NOBO's. Might be a workable half-year business.

Regardless, the OP said he's looking to open somewhere in the south.

generoll
09-07-2010, 09:31
there are a lot of bicycle enthusiasts here on the roads between Helen and Hiawassee. If you know bikes and are looking for a niche, this might be something to consider.

mister krabs
09-07-2010, 09:48
there are a lot of bicycle enthusiasts here on the roads between Helen and Hiawassee. If you know bikes and are looking for a niche, this might be something to consider.

Motorcyclists and car guys too, and their season goes later in the fall. A place that could get some business from Oktoberfest or wine tours would expand the customer base as well.

Crazy Larry #1
09-07-2010, 10:43
First off, hello all. ive been trolling this site for sometime in prep for my 2013 thru-hike(after my navy contract is up). Love this site!

But to the point. A friend and I have been entertaining the idea of opening an outfitter/hostel for runners/bikers/hikers and the like somewhere near the trail. He being from NC and myself being from GA, we want to stay somewhere in the south close to our roots but still be able to serve a majority of outdoors enthusiast.

So my questions are:
Taking your knowledge and experience of the trail into account, where would you most like to see an outfitter/hostel along the AT?

What would you like to see offered there as far as supplies, activities and accomodations are concerned?

How far from the trail would you consider a reasonable distance for walking and/or if you had a ride to and from provided by the outfitter?

Also, feel free to add any information or comments you might have. I have thick skin so lay it on me. This is just an idea right now but I want to know if its even worth considering before i get ahead of myself. Thanks all!!
do it in erwin, tennessee....

orions_knight
09-07-2010, 12:41
Ps. I spent 2 years on the USS Orion.

im on 3yr orders with the Peleliu right now.

orions_knight
09-07-2010, 12:50
Ps. I spent 2 years on the USS Orion.

im on 3yr orders with the Peleliu right now.


there are a lot of bicycle enthusiasts here on the roads between Helen and Hiawassee. If you know bikes and are looking for a niche, this might be something to consider.

marathon runners and cyclist are more my friends area, hiking and backpacking more mine, but regardless this is good info. kinda narrows down a piece of the market.


Motorcyclists and car guys too
now this i can do! got plenty of background there...still id like to keep my feet on the ground and slow down a little. not that theres anything with a sunny cruise through the mountains :cool:


I would first look into a state where zoning laws, building codes are a little lax. Then zero in from there.

good looking out, in my excitment i neglected the legal matters. haha




do it in erwin, tennessee....


any particular reason? ill google it and check out the exact location and surroundings. i could deal with tennessee.

orions_knight
09-07-2010, 12:55
there are a lot of bicycle enthusiasts here on the roads between Helen and Hiawassee. If you know bikes and are looking for a niche, this might be something to consider.

marathon runners and cyclist are more my friends area, hiking and backpacking more mine, but regardless this is good info. kinda narrows down a piece of the market.


Motorcyclists and car guys too
now this i can do! got plenty of background there...still id like to keep my feet on the ground and slow down a little. not that theres anything with a sunny cruise through the mountains :cool:


I would first look into a state where zoning laws, building codes are a little lax. Then zero in from there.

good looking out, in my excitment i neglected the legal matters. haha




do it in erwin, tennessee....


any particular reason? ill google it and check out the exact location and surroundings. i could deal with tennessee.

orions_knight
09-07-2010, 12:58
i know i know multiple posts...sorry about that, internet on a ship in the middle of nowhere is sketchy at best. :/

flemdawg1
09-07-2010, 13:03
any particular reason? ill google it and check out the exact location and surroundings. i could deal with tennessee.

I think it has to do with some people not particularly liking Uncle Johnnie. All my dealings with him have been satisfactory, but I'm limited in my business dealings to section shuttles, parking, and post-hike showers.