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  1. #1
    Registered User DavidNH's Avatar
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    Default hiking the AT and IAT in one year..is it realistic

    Hello,

    I would like to know, how realistic is it to hike the Appalachian Trail (2175 miles) as well as continuing to the end of the International Appalachian Trail (another 650 miles) in one year?

    I dont intend to avg over 15 miles per day and hope to avoid winter conditions (well at least any serious winter conditions!).


    Is it best to do the two trails separately at different times? I have this nagging desire to thru hike both trails in the same year. Yet I am not a speed hiker and dont want to be and dont want to be hiking in Febuary (true winter) or late november (damn cold up north!!)

    Just as an aside..I tried to post this at trailplace.com and was told on no uncertain terms that I must stick to Appalachian Trail related topics. Hmm... so I post this here gingerly in the off topic forum hoping to not ruffle any feathers!!! Seems trailplace.com is rather narrow in its focus! I mean..this DOES relate to the AT! just not entirely.

    David (NH Hhiker)

  2. #2

    Default

    Yes, it certainly is possible.

    This is also not an "off topic" subject here on Whiteblaze. No worries.
    'All my lies are always wishes" ~Jeff Tweedy~

  3. #3
    Donating Member/AT Class of 2003 - The WET year
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    At 15 or so miles a day, totally avoiding winter conditions might be a challenge unless you're willing to start in late February or early March. You'd have to seriously limit your zero days or town overnights to get from Springer to the northern terminus of the IAT between the first of March and the end of October at that pace.

    'Slogger
    AT 2003
    The more I learn ...the more I realize I don't know.

  4. #4

    Default

    It's possible as long as you take very few Zero Days. Plus I would go SOBO as you'd have so many miles by the time cold weather came you might forget about your no winter idea. When you're outside all day every day you acclimate and you'll have a whole new perspective about winter conditions. Unless it's below zero with a wind chill you won't even notice.

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by NHhiker
    Hello,

    I would like to know, how realistic is it to hike the Appalachian Trail (2175 miles) as well as continuing to the end of the International Appalachian Trail (another 650 miles) in one year?

    I dont intend to avg over 15 miles per day and hope to avoid winter conditions (well at least any serious winter conditions!).


    Is it best to do the two trails separately at different times? I have this nagging desire to thru hike both trails in the same year. Yet I am not a speed hiker and dont want to be and dont want to be hiking in Febuary (true winter) or late november (damn cold up north!!)

    Just as an aside..I tried to post this at trailplace.com and was told on no uncertain terms that I must stick to Appalachian Trail related topics. Hmm... so I post this here gingerly in the off topic forum hoping to not ruffle any feathers!!! Seems trailplace.com is rather narrow in its focus! I mean..this DOES relate to the AT! just not entirely.

    David (NH Hhiker)
    Single season hikes from Key West to Cap Gaspe (and beyond to the IAT 's new terminus in Newfoundland) have been done by Jojo Smiley, Nimblewill Nomad, and Spirit Eagle, and perhaps a few others.
    The IAT folks always have a booth set up at the ALDHA Gatherings at Dartmouth, come visit this October David! www.aldha.org
    Something I found interesting - the Georgia AT Club gave the ITA folks permission to duplicate the famous plaque on Springer. Well almost duplicate - the IAT version has a felmale hiker heading south!
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," retired Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Discussing the IAT, or even referring to it by its deceptive name, damages the Appalachian Trail and is not to be toler...oh wait, wrong site.

    If you really want to do both, it will require somewhat better preparation than if you planned to stop at Katahdin. More pre-hike attention to fitness/gear/etc. is in order. So, too, is a disciplined pace that doesn't include a lot of 0 days.

    You don't have to be a speed hiker to put in a lot of miles. Being an early riser and hiking steadily through the day will put the miles behind you quickly enough, even if you walk slowly.

    The best strategy to really maximize your miles is to hike for a certain amount of time each day. Be ready to hike when light is adequate, and go until 90 minutes before dark, rather than stopping at a shelter that you happened to reach an hour earlier.

    If you do it that way, you'll quickly find that 15 miles is really not a big deal at all for a single day.

  7. #7
    http://www.myspace.com/officialbillville Mountain Dew's Avatar
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    Default

    NHhiker... No worries on being off topic here on WHITEBLAZE.com. ATTROLL and Sgt. Rock are far and above better people and better message board *owners that the biggest outcast of the entire A.T. community is. I.e. WingNUT. I'll respond to your question with my own question. Why try to do it in a year when you could take longer ?
    THE Mairnttt...Boys of Dryland '03 (an unplanned Billville suburb)
    http://www.AT2003.com
    Hudson1010@aol.com
    http://www.myspace.com/hudson_hartson

  8. #8
    Registered User DavidNH's Avatar
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    Unhappy

    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Dew
    NHhiker... No worries on being off topic here on WHITEBLAZE.com. ATTROLL and Sgt. Rock are far and above better people and better message board *owners that the biggest outcast of the entire A.T. community is. I.e. WingNUT. I'll respond to your question with my own question. Why try to do it in a year when you could take longer ?
    Because I have yet to win the lottery and at some point in my life will need to get a job to earn money again . It is like saying..why thru hike the at in one year when you could do it in several?
    Last edited by DavidNH; 01-22-2005 at 10:33. Reason: to fix a misspelling

  9. #9
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    Default Plan Ahead

    I was somewhat interested in continuing on the IAT last summer, because I finished at Springer early, in late July, and had heard about the IAT at the 2003 Hanover Gathering. I was very frusterated about getting information at the last minute on resupply options, maps, and total time commitment from the trail. I was not mentally prepared to hike past mid September, and I got very unhelpful information, like it might take up to 6 months just for the IAT.

    At Baxter State Park I asked about getting a camping permit north of Katahdin. Even on a Tuesday night in July, all sites were booked, so I would have had to take the road option out of Baxter Park. This only adds one extra day of road walking, but gets the IAT off to a pretty anti-climatic start after Katahdin. I had already decided it was best for me to go to Colo. for a month and do a lot of short hikes.

    I got the IAT map set after returning home, and it does not look too bad. Also, people do teh AT/IAT every year. I don't think the SOBO option is a very mainstream idea.

  10. #10
    Registered User walkin' wally's Avatar
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    Default

    I just finished reading Nimblewill Nomad's new book " Where The Path Is Less Worn " There is a lot of info in that book about the AT and IAT. Even a section about Newfoundland and the trails south of the AT.

  11. #11
    Rocket GA->ME '04
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    Default Daybreak

    In '04, there was a hiker name Daybreak who was going from Alabama to Cap Gaspe. I know he made it to Katahdin, but does anybody know if he finished the IAT? I bet he did, but can somebody confirm? NHhiker, I suppose he'd be another good spource of info provided you can could get in touch with him.

  12. #12
    Registered User neo's Avatar
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    flyin brian did the triple crown in 2001 7400 miles in less than 9 months
    he was doin 25 miles a day,i average between 20 and 25 miles a day,but i love doing big miles travel lightly grasshopper neo

  13. #13

    Default

    I met Crash, a SOBO hiker, at Story Spring Shelter in VT the second week of October, 2003. He was going from Canada to Key West, doing many 18-20+ mile days and looked like he was very capable of making it. I believe he already had a AT thru-hike under his belt (1999 maybe).

  14. #14
    http://www.myspace.com/officialbillville Mountain Dew's Avatar
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    Default Crash

    You speak of Crash Test Dummy. He Started late in '03 on a sobo of the ect. At the Gathering I spoke to him and he said that he was almost to Florida so i'm guessing that he is almost done by now.
    THE Mairnttt...Boys of Dryland '03 (an unplanned Billville suburb)
    http://www.AT2003.com
    Hudson1010@aol.com
    http://www.myspace.com/hudson_hartson

  15. #15
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    Default

    I havn't done the AT yet, but I did the IAT last summer. Sure you can complete both trails in one year - afterall a number of people have. It seems to me a southbound trip might make some sense. The weather window through the Quebec mountains is generally considered to be mid June to October - not very long. In mid July I encountered snowfield remnants (no difficulty) and at least one 4 C day (also extremely hot days as well, so go figure). Expect quite heavy rainfall in the mountains during July, the wettest month of the year. Trails will be very muddy and difficult. Apart from local hikers in Gaspe Park, this is a very lonely trail. I met only three thru hikers in the entire walk, oddly enough all at the same place at a remote cabin in the Matapedia valley. It is normal not to see a soul during the 5 to 10 day hike through the Matane Reserve, the wildest and most spectacular section of the IAT.

    The IAT can come as a rude and wonderful shock to AT hikers. Trails are not as well maintained and blazed. You can get lost for a while - trust me. Mostly these problems are a function of time and money. It is afterall, a new trail. But regardless of the imperfections, I have met no IAT thru hiker who does not consider this a marvellous walk.

    Cheers,

    PKH

  16. #16
    AT, ECT, LT, PCT Thru-hiker JojoSmiley's Avatar
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    Default

    Some others who have done it are Spur and B&B. Most of us have journals on Trailjournals.com if you would like to see how we did it. I and my friends had support from Nomad98 but it can be done without support. Just have to carry a bit more food between resupply. Viateur and Jojo DeChamplain helped us out alot right before entering the Matane. They live nearby and were willing to come out to see us and help set up reservations for shelters along the way. We don't speak french so it was really nice to have their help. He is usually at the Gathering so speak to him if you are really interested.
    Jojo Smiley :)
    Savor the Moments!

  17. #17
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    Thumbs up

    I couldn't agree more with JojoSmiley. Jocelyne and Viateur De Champlain are the finest of people. They pretty much run the SIA-IAT Quebec. They allowed me to stay with them as I was dropping off supplies on my way to Cape Gaspe, and again when I left the trail for a couple of days (atrocious weather) while coming south. They are always willing to help out. The Gathering this year is in Anse Pleureuse (Bay of Tears) Quebec towards the end of June.

    This is the best source of info on SIA (Sentier International Appalache) Quebec.
    Jocelyne and Viateur speak very good English so do not be intimidated on that score.

    Jocelyne & Viateur De Champlain,
    616, Avenue Saint Redempteur,
    Matane, Quebec, Canada
    G4W 1L1

    info@sia-iat.com

    Cheers,

    PKH

  18. #18

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PKH
    The Gathering this year is in Anse Pleureuse (Bay of Tears) Quebec towards the end of June.
    PKH, there's an IAT Gathering?
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," retired Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  19. #19
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    Default

    Yes there is an IAT gathering. Specific information can be obtained from the address/e-mail provided in my previous post, or alternately from US IAT sources. Just havn't done that myself - it's a long way to June, and from the looks of things out on my deck, I'll probably still be too busy shovelling snow to go.

    Completely blowed and snowed under in Halifax, Nova Scotia,

    PKH

  20. #20
    Peakbagger Extraordinaire The Solemates's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neo
    flyin brian did the triple crown in 2001 7400 miles in less than 9 months
    he was doin 25 miles a day,i average between 20 and 25 miles a day,but i love doing big miles travel lightly grasshopper neo
    I think he averaged almost 33mpd or something like that. It was certainly more than 20-25.

    We also met Crash Test Dummy near the Partnership Shelter in VA while on the AT. He started July 4, 2003 doing a SOBO of the ECT. He said his coldest nights were actually in VA (not the Northeast) where temps were usually below 0 at night. Although, he did take quite a bit of time off over the Christmas holidays and once near FL. He didnt have the goal of doing it in just a year.
    The only thing better than mountains, is mountains where you haven't been.

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