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Thread: MST Hitchhiking

  1. #1
    Registered User dudeijuststarted's Avatar
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    Default MST Hitchhiking

    How easy is it to catch a hitch on the MST? Particularly section 3, but I'm curious about everyone's experience across the whole trail.

    Thanks!

  2. #2

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    The majority of Section 3 is along the Blue Ridge Parkway, so you may have fairly decent luck hitching there. I've always seemed to catch ridges without too much incident along the Parkway.

    Also, people seem to be more apt to stop for someone who looks like a backpacker hitching a ride than someone just trying to hitch a ride.

    When I did the trail in 2005 I don't think I ever had trouble catching a ride when I needed one.
    Grizzly Adam


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  3. #3

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    A warning about the Blue Ridge Parkway---I was hitching on the Parkway back in 1988 near Linville NC and a Parkway ranger drove up in a jeep and kicked me off the road and told me it's not allowed. Luckily there was an adjoining county road nearby to which I hiked and caught a ride. Maybe in the intervening years the Parkway cops made it legal?

  4. #4
    GSMNP 900 Miler
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post
    A warning about the Blue Ridge Parkway---I was hitching on the Parkway back in 1988 near Linville NC and a Parkway ranger drove up in a jeep and kicked me off the road and told me it's not allowed. Luckily there was an adjoining county road nearby to which I hiked and caught a ride. Maybe in the intervening years the Parkway cops made it legal?
    I've don't a little research on the subject of hitch-hiking in national parks. While I can't quote a regulation specifically, I seem to recall that what I found was that the general rules that govern all national parks prohibit hitch hiking. Some national parks apparently enforce this very strictly. Similar to Tipi's story, I've found several stories online of people having issues trying to hitch hike in Mt. Rainier National Park.

    However, every National Park has a Compendium of rules and regulations specific to that park, where the park superintendent can over-ride or add-to the general rules that govern all national parks.

    In the case of GSMNP, it's compendium of rules and regulations specifically allow hitch-hiking when done in a prescribed safe manner.

    Compendiums for Mt. Rainier and Blue Ridge Parkway have no such allowances, and hence the reason why people are reporting issues with trying to hitch-hike in those parks.

  5. #5
    Registered User Tennessee Viking's Avatar
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    There are some hikers that have their own support to get them off trail or resupply. The FMST also provides some info on volunteers and supports along the length of the trail. In some of the East Carolina towns, some towns are known to open up and aid incoming hikers. If you have any sections of concern, PM me. I pretty much have Durham to Smithfield done. And sectioning off the Gorge to Devils Garden right now.


    Download the MST guide for the section 3 and check the trial updates (mountainstoseatrail.org). They list a number of services or supporters along the route. You may also want to contact the FMST office for any unlisted supporters. Pisgah Inn, REI, other Asheville outfitters may also have some recommendations.

    If the need is to get off the BRP for the night, there are several FSR roads and trails right off the parkway. Just be far enough on USFS land from the BRP corridor.
    Last edited by Tennessee Viking; 04-04-2018 at 12:30.
    ''Tennessee Viking'
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    Former TEHCC (AT) Maintainer
    Falls Lake Trail: 2011

  6. #6

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    I once walked almost 5miles on the BRP in this area, expecting to get a hitch. We were not that dirty or scraggly looking? We were even passed up by a guy with an empty pickup, with an "AT" sticker on it......
    Is there a patron saint of Hitchers or Hikers? Maybe St. Francis covers this?
    Dudejuststarted, i used to live in St. Pete, most of my fam still does. Good Vibes on your hike, im a local, Black Mountain, NC. Im currently trying to figure resupply from MT Mitchell to Clingmans Dome, seems sketchy after Asheville.

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    easy hitching. don't walk. stand still in a good place. if you see BRP police, fist the thumb and let them pass. pretend to be doing something else as they pass. like holding a hand to your ear as if on a phone or whatever. when they're out of sight, de-fist the thumb.

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