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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1azarus View Post
    new maps of the trail are now available. I have put the southern half of connecticut on the phone app "maprika" and will put the rest on soon -- take a look. It is sweet that this trail links to the Sunapee Monadnock trail -- that makes quite a nice continuous path. the trail goes right through my town....
    I have the new maps. FWIW, the mileages are off for the sections in MA. In some cases, by more than 20%! It is almost like the maps don't count the road portions.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Notch7 View Post
    I have not checked 1azarus's maps, but I live right on the trail and I hike it all the time. You should know that there is an ~18 mile patch between Belchertown, MA and Leverett, MA that is currently being "re-routed" due to apparent objections from some property owners. This means there are signs posted telling hikers to keep off the trail. You can read more at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metacomet-Monadnock_Trail . The main objector is a big land owner in the area that does a lot of logging. Thru-hikers could take their chances through this area or walk on nearby roads.
    This is the last 18 miles I need to do! I have been holding off for just that reason, but it looks like soon enough I will need to just suck it up and do all the road walks!

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by burger View Post
    There is a very easy alternate around the closed area. Just take the Robert Frost Trail from the eastern end of the Holyoke Range all the way to its northern end, which I believe is less than a mile's roadwalk from the NET. The RF Trail goes around the outskirts of Amherst (an easy hitch to a nice college town for resupply) and then gets rural again and goes over the top of Mt. Toby, which has a great view.

    There's an excellent online guide/maps for the RF trail (pdf) at https://www.amherstma.gov/DocumentCenter/Home/View/610

    I've hiked both the original, closed trail and the RF trail, and the RF is actually nicer in some ways. If you are adventurous, you can also pick up a copy of the old Metacomet-Monadnock Trail guide published by AMC Berkshire chapter and try to follow the old trail. The blazes were painted over in brown and you can still find them. AFAIK, the old trail is still open to the public--it's just not marked as the NET anymore.

    Anyone interested can PM me for more details. It's a shame that the selfish interests of a logging company is preventing the NET from being a complete trail.
    Excellent suggestion! I will dig a bit into the details of this option. Sure, there will be some that say you didn't do the NET if you take the RF Trail, but I like the PCT mentality a bit more...take detours when you see fit as long as you continue on your feet!

  4. #24
    CDT - 2013, PCT - 2009, AT - 1300 miles done burger's Avatar
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    01-03-2005
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    Massachusetts
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    Quote Originally Posted by redseal View Post
    Excellent suggestion! I will dig a bit into the details of this option. Sure, there will be some that say you didn't do the NET if you take the RF Trail, but I like the PCT mentality a bit more...take detours when you see fit as long as you continue on your feet!
    Totally agreed. I think that almost all hikers would agree that so long as you connect your steps, you've done a thru-hike, even if you didn't hike the official route the whole way. Personally, I think that skipping road walks shouldn't count against you. Road walking is terrible, boring, and potentially dangerous (I can recall at least 2 thru-hikers that were killed on a road walk around a fire detour on the PCT. There are dangerous road walks on the CDT, too). Also, I'm getting too old to waste time on road walking. I'd rather use that time to hike on an actual trail.

    So don't feel bad if you want to skip the road walk, but if you want to connect your steps, the RF trail makes a nice alternative.

  5. #25
    Registered User Junco's Avatar
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    12-15-2014
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    Boston, MA
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    I completed ~180 mile hike of the NET, taking the Robert Frost Trail alternative, earlier this year and blogged about it here: http://gcappalachia.blogspot.com/sea...20Trail%202016

    I met one other long distance hiker during my hike, and found his blog here: https://woodycooks2.wordpress.com

    Judging by the logbooks that are along the trail. It seems like a small handful of hikers have been thru-hiking the trail over the past years... maybe 5-10 per year (or less). The trail is fantastic hiking and makes for a great thru hike. The biggest challenge is the lack of sanctioned campsites and how you deal with that.
    Junco

    AT 2014 / NET 2016 / PCT 2016 / and more at: http://gcappalachia.blogspot.com/

  6. #26
    Registered User Junco's Avatar
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    12-15-2014
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    Oh, forgot to mention... if anyone has questions about long distance hiking or overnighting on the NET or RFT, I'd be happy to talk with you about it. Best way to contact me is through my blog.

    Looking forward to getting back on the NET this fall or winter!
    Junco

    AT 2014 / NET 2016 / PCT 2016 / and more at: http://gcappalachia.blogspot.com/

  7. #27
    AT 2012
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    09-11-2006
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    Wallingford, CT
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    Anyone interested in hiking a fifty mile or so section of the NET anywhere in MA or north of New Britain from October 24 to the 26th? I like hiking in opposite directions back to our own cars, meeting up at least briefly in the middle somewhere... But I welcome suggestions. I am still planning that October 15th b b que at our b & b. More on that soon.
    Lazarus

  8. #28

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    Completed a SOBO Thru-Hike this year in 9 days 3 hours.
    This trail is very thru-hike-able and can be done carrying pretty minimal food due to the proximity to towns... given your comfortable doing some hitch hiking or sideways miles.
    Would recommend, just don't camp near roads or houses and try to set up on top of mountains and ridge-lines.

    Heres the link to my official post:
    https://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/sho...-ThruHike-2018

    - SnowBird -
    (AT '17 - NET '18)

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