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A Complete Appalachian Trail Guidebook.
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Fireweed - An Older Woman Who Hikes Solo and With Friends

I get questions about hiking solo on the Appalachian Trail and so will try answering them here. Although, you're never really alone on the AT. That's one of the things I like about it.

  1. Damascus to Partnership Shelter, a week of extremes.

    by , 04-23-2013 at 10:25 (Fireweed - An Older Woman Who Hikes Solo and With Friends)
    Sitting in the library in Marion, VA. Hiked 14 miles yesterday and surprisingly, it didn’t kill me. I prefer less mileage but was rewarded with a shelter that has showers, a dumpster for trash, a sink to do laundry and shuttle service from town (50 cents) and pizza delivery.
    There’s a large group of us here. These folks have hiked from Georgia, through 2 plus feet of snow in the Smokies, and still have a sense of humor. The trail names are inventive: Little Engine, Ambassador, Movie ...
  2. Should have started in

    by , 04-15-2013 at 09:29 (Fireweed - An Older Woman Who Hikes Solo and With Friends)
    Connectivity has been sparse. We abandoned Pennsylvania in Port Clinton, and after a daring mid day raid on the largest Cabella's in the US we headed to Maryland's northern border. We did the whole state (only 45+ miles) into Harper's Ferry and hiked in record breaking heat. PA was record breaking cold. been that kind of trip. So, here we are, nearing Damascus, VA where I left off last spring. It's raining and 75 so that's a good thing. John may be heading out after this Friday and I'll likely ...
  3. Too Cold and Too Windy

    by , 04-03-2013 at 10:44 (Fireweed - An Older Woman Who Hikes Solo and With Friends)
    Having left the trail at Wind Gap we started into town. The locals stared with blank faces and we were grudgingly allowed to fill our empty water bottles at the home store. If this had been a B grade horror film we would check in at the local hotel and wake up dead. BUT, it isn’t a B grade movie so we did a 180, stuck out our thumbs and hitched into Palmerton, one of the friendliest towns on the entire trail.

    Our ride, two great folks from the area, deposited us at the Town Hall ...
  4. Unforeseen consequences

    by , 04-02-2013 at 13:56 (Fireweed - An Older Woman Who Hikes Solo and With Friends)
    Two days on the trail and each one a learning experience. Day one out of Delaware Water Gap was high overcast and cool. Perfect hiking weather. Doc, Seldom Seen and I headed out after hot apple pie and ice cream plus hot dogs. Yes, hot dogs…they come with the pie. So 1000 + elevation gain, snow patches, wind, sail planes, grouse and 7 miles put us at the shelter. Then the fun began.

    It took three tries to set up the tarp and bridge hammock. The standard hammock is quite narrow ...
  5. 24 Hours till take off/

    by , 03-27-2013 at 12:26 (Fireweed - An Older Woman Who Hikes Solo and With Friends)
    Here in Anchorage, Alaska it's minus 12 degrees. That makes the 30 and 40 degree temps in PA & VA look pretty tropical. Tomorrow I fly from AK toward NY. I should be on the trail Saturday. I've generally hiked solo but this time I'll hike with Seldom Seen and Doc. It's possible that 4-Iron will join us if the weather where we are is better than the weather he's headed toward. Is that a "hikers only concept?"

    No changes in gear. Still staying with the warmer bag ...
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