View Full Version : First time section hike in GA.

09-27-2011, 15:58
I want to start planning a section hike maybe four nights 5 days or some. I'm in pretty good shape and have done a some ~26 mile training hikes in the national forests in Arkansas. They have some decent hills. Would springer to neels gap be a good place to start?

09-27-2011, 16:04
also are there good views form the mountain tops on that secion of trail, sorry for the dumb question.

09-28-2011, 07:03
Springer is an excellant place to start, just ask the thousands of hikers who have done it. Springer to Neels Gap is something like 36 miles, add 8 if you choose the approach trail. It starts up and down and pretty much stays up and down but probably 3 days to Neels Gap (Mountain Crossings) then maybe 2 or 3 more days to Unicoi Gap.
I suggest you contact Hiker's Hostel (Josh and Leigh) in Dahlonega.

As fo the views, the best in that section would probably be Blood Mountain prior to Neels then Wolf Laurel (I think?) just after Neels.


09-28-2011, 07:40
Springer is a fine place to start. There are plenty of views as long as you go when the leaves are down (it gets kinda green in the summer.) It's 30.5 miles from Springer to Neels, +9 for the Approach Trail, which you can skip by getting a ride to the top, or hike if you have the extra day.

Take it easy to start. Have fun.

09-28-2011, 08:52
Four nights and five days are plenty to get you from Amicalola to Neels. That is the FatMan's pace so I suspect you could get further if you choose to based upon your age and experience.

Nice views from Springer, Ramrock, Big Cedar, and Blood with a couple of others sprinkled in. If going after the leaf fall there will be many panoramic views while you are walking.

09-28-2011, 11:27
Cool I'm defiently going to shoot for a section hike in early april. Newb question, is it rude to hike at that time of year and use the shelter since many thru hikers will be there and I'd be taking shelter space from them? I'd probably just bring my double rainbow and tent camp I guess. Probably a dumb question sorry in advance

09-28-2011, 11:28
Also where can I park near neels gap that is safe. I'm def gonna get a shuttle. I don't wanna take the time to hike the approach trail, just gonna get dropped off as close to springer as possible.

09-28-2011, 12:09
Shelters are not the domain of thru hikers, no more than any other group of people, they are built and maintained for everyone to use.
Having said that, I have felt guilty taking space ina shelter when it is crowded (except in the Smokies where you are required to stay in the shelter unless you meet certain criteria, etc...

Personally I'd take the tent and plan to use it because 1: I feel the ground is softer and better suited for sleeping than plywood; 2: A tent is warmer than the shelters, and 3: privacy from the sights and sounds of many bodies sleeping together.

Again, contact Josh and Leigh at Hikers Hostel for parking and shuttling. There is avialable parking just north of Mountain Crossings at hte base of Blood Mountain.

09-28-2011, 12:25
There are lots of reasons to not use shelters, but avoiding them because it is rude to take up shelter space from thru-hikers is not one of them. If you want to use the shelters just live under the same rules as everyone else - first come, first serve. And that is about it as far as rules for shelters. I suggest you treat others as you would like to be treated, but it would be fool hearty to expect the same from your other shelter mates. If you do, rest assured you will be disappointed.

Parking is safe most anywhere in GA. There is the occasional break in, but it is more likely to happen on your street than while parked in GA for the trail. Just don't leave any valuables in site. Parking for Neels Gap is at the Byron Reese Parking lot about 1/4 mile north of Mtn Xngs.

09-28-2011, 13:44
Thanks for all the asvise guys, can't wait for this trip. This forum is a great help.

09-28-2011, 13:44
need to read before i click, "advise"

09-28-2011, 14:00
what temperature sleeping bag do people usually bring for a this section for an early april time frame?

Virginia Archer
10-27-2011, 22:44
Also where can I park near neels gap that is safe. I'm def gonna get a shuttle. I don't wanna take the time to hike the approach trail, just gonna get dropped off as close to springer as possible.

I'm also Planning Springer to either Mountian Crossing or Neels about mid april. Maybe we can help each other with the vehicle shuffle!

10-28-2011, 00:44
Just let me know, I know it's still a while away but dosen't hurt to plan ahead