Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-14-2019
    Location
    Homer Glen, Il
    Posts
    8
    Images
    7

    Default Spring 2020 hike

    I am looking for help from my Tramily. I am looking to return to the AT for another 8 day section hike in the end of May approximately. I was hoping for advice on a moderate section, my compadre I am going with takes a few days to get his trail legs. I am a experienced backpacker and he is returning with me for another hike. I was thinking the Grayson Highlands, leaving from Damascus. I prefer tent camping, I know it isn't allowed in the park. Also how long does it take to get get through the park using the trail. What do you think about the scenery once you leave Grayson. I am open to any suggestions, I really loved our trip last year in the TN/NC Section, please advise!

  2. #2
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-02-2007
    Location
    DFW, TX / Northern NH
    Age
    63
    Posts
    7,898
    Images
    27

    Default

    Trail Days in Damascus is May 15 - 17 and you'll be right in the NOBO thru-hiker bubble (at least some part of it). Unless experiencing that is part of your plan.
    Last edited by 4eyedbuzzard; 02-13-2020 at 19:36.

  3. #3

    Default

    If you wait until after trail days, it will be a lot quieter. It's a zoo around there for the week before and the week after.

    Going NOBO, your next resupply would be in Marion, 62 miles away. There are 7 shelters, 8 if you count Partnership, but that's on the road to town. If you took it real easy, that could be your 8 days. But 8 days of food is a lot of weight to carry for the first 4 days and the harder part of the section is the south end.

    I think what I would do is start in Marion and end in Hampton. Marion to Damascus can be done in 4 days, especially if you use the Creeper trail for the last bit rather then climb up and over that pointless ridge. You walk right through Damascus so a hot meal and a resupply is easy to do. Then it's another easy 3 days to Hampton.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  4. #4
    Registered User Siestita's Avatar
    Join Date
    07-06-2007
    Location
    Frankfort, KY
    Age
    70
    Posts
    315
    Journal Entries
    1

    Default

    "I prefer tent camping, I know it isn't allowed in the park. Also, how long does it take to get get through the park using the trail? What do you think about the scenery once you leave Grayson?"

    Much of that state park's acreage is located below the open balds for which the area is justly famous. So, most of the scenic "crest zone" actually lies within the National Forest above the State Park. Many day visitors to the Park hike up onto National Forest land. I intensely hate that scenery and it's somewhat distant from my home here in Kentucky. So, over the years I've driven there to backpack numerous times, more than to any other area through which the AT passes.

    From Grayson Highlands State Park's 'Backpacker Parking Lot" near Massie Gap its easy to take the AT (or other trails) to places outside of the Park in order to camp. But, if you arrive at that trailhead late in the day, give yourselves an hour (if going southbound on the AT, or in that general direction) or two hours (if going northbound on the AT) to get out of the park. Alternatively, if you get to the State Park late after driving there from Illinois, consider possibly tenting that night in the Park's pleasant campground. Several other places have been mentioned as potential locations for leaving a vehicle (Marion, Damascus, Hampton). And, between Grayson Highlands S.P. and Marion vehicles can be left at two other spots (Mount Rogers Nat. Forest Headquarters/Partnership Shelter; Hurricane Campground). There are some other trailheads in the area where car break-ins have occurred.

    That whole area, within the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, offers many great loop hike possibilities. In addition to eliminating the need to arrange for a shuttle, doing a loop can potentially maximize the proportion of your trip that you'll spend up on the balds.

    You don't say how many miles you and your (potentially slower) friend anticipate hiking each day. It's possible you'll be covering more miles than I would be doing, but not necessarily hiking as many as Slo-go'um recommends in post #3. Whatever your mileage preference happens to be, within the aforementioned area either loop itineraries or point-to-point AT section hikes can be done.
    Last edited by Siestita; 02-13-2020 at 22:18.

  5. #5
    Registered User Siestita's Avatar
    Join Date
    07-06-2007
    Location
    Frankfort, KY
    Age
    70
    Posts
    315
    Journal Entries
    1

    Default

    Whether you amble through the Mount Rogers crest zone in a leisurely fashion or hike quickly through it hurrying towards Marion, Damascus, or Hampton, be aware that extensive nuisance bear activity has occurred in that area during recent years. Within the link below look for "Southwest Virginia" and specifically the heading "Bear Warning: Mount Rogers & Grayson Highlands".

    http://www.appalachiantrail.org/home...ail-updates#VA





  6. #6

    Default

    Any section of the trail between Waynesboro VA and the Cumberland valley in Pennsylvania would be more "moderate" than southern Virginia, for the benefit of your hiking partner. The most scenic section of that part of the trail would be Shenandoah National Park and could be done in eight days without strain. But be aware that the park would be very crowded over Memorial Day weekend, if that is an issue with you.

    On the other hand, if your hiking partner was able to handle some part of the NC/TN trail last time out, then hiking north from Damascus would not be too difficult for that partner -- it would likely be easier than last time.
    Life Member: ATC, ALDHA, Superior Hiking Trail Association

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-14-2019
    Location
    Homer Glen, Il
    Posts
    8
    Images
    7

    Default

    Thank you, everyone, I believe I have settled on the the Triple crown, Dragons Tooth, Macafee Knob, etc. I was hoping to start on a weekend to miss the bubble and to hit the 30 miles necessary to see all three in the middle of the week! Then continuing Nobo for around another 30 miles or so to complete my trip. What do you think of the scenery before the Triple crown and thereafter.

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-10-2017
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Age
    44
    Posts
    189

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesConroy View Post
    Thank you, everyone, I believe I have settled on the the Triple crown, Dragons Tooth, Macafee Knob, etc. I was hoping to start on a weekend to miss the bubble and to hit the 30 miles necessary to see all three in the middle of the week! Then continuing Nobo for around another 30 miles or so to complete my trip. What do you think of the scenery before the Triple crown and thereafter.
    Scenery before and after the triple crown is not incredible, but you do go through some very nice meadows. There are some cool cliff areas to check out before you head down into Daleville (north of Tinker Cliffs) to check out.

++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •