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I'm thinking about hiking the Appalachian Trail this year. Has anyone here hiked the AT, CDT or PCT? If so, what was your experience?
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>>2497595
It's not fun. It's a waste of time.
you'll feel like shit after a few days.
If you really want to have fun and tour, do so on a MTB. The weight will be mostly off your back and you can do easily 100 miles a day.
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Appalachian Trail is for normies. There's millions of cool random ass trails in appalachia you could do and you just pick the most basic ass shit. If you are going to spend months hiking you could do all sorts of neat backpacking loops. Appalachian Trail routing is designed for easy resupply, not to be in the most scenic mountains.
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>>2497595
AT 2017
Outside of some short overnight stuff it was my first backpacking experience. I started March 12 at the arch and was immediately kicked in the face by the climb and the cold. Even with all my clothes on and in my 20 degree bag I was uncomfortable on top of Springer. The second night was even colder and it dumped snow from Hawk MTN to the NOC. The day that followed was some of the hardest hiking in the entire southern portion of the trail. It was also the day I got my first injury on trail and one that would take me off for over a week later on. It was all I could do to set my tent up and crawl inside. Night 3 was 0 degrees and I shivered, awake til the sun came up. Unzipped the tent door that morning to find both my shoes and water bottles frozen solid. I hiked out 5 or so miles in crocs. The next night was forecasted to be -0 and I caught a ride into Suches with some locals who dropped me off at the only open business in that town(the gas station). On the ride into town they asked me if I was going to get back on trail or not. I told them yes, but they seemed skeptical of my answer. And desu I wasn't sure if I believed it either. Fast forward to the Smokies and it rained all 5 days in the park as well as the zero I took in Gatlinburg. The trail was essentially a shallow creek for a lot of that section and not a single person I ran into in GSMNP was having a fun time hiking.
The persistent smell of weed got on my nerves and horny grouse made me think my heart was beating itself to an arrhythmia on the uphills.(I didn't know what a grouse trying to fuck sounded like at the time)

I guess the tl;dr is that it's hard. It's one of the most physically demanding things you could ever do. You're going to get injured, you're going to be too cold/hot, and you're going to fight with yourself on a near daily basis when it does get hard. But if you can push past all of that it'll ruin your life. You'll always be chasing that experience.
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>>2497693
Just to wrap that last bit up.
When I approached the Springer mountain shelter that first night there was a small group of people standing around talking. I stopped nearby and leaned on my trekking poles exhausted when one of the guys standing there looked over at me and said "Welcome home." I halfheartedly laughed at his comment and then went to set up my tent. Of all the conversations I had while I was out there those 2 words stand out the most. Since then I haven't been able to get the idea of thru hiking another long trail out of my head. The thought of dropping my job, house, etc. and just going is always in the back of my mind. Especially when I go on other, shorter backpacking trips.
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>>2497697
>Since then I haven't been able to get the idea of thru hiking another long trail out of my head. The thought of dropping my job, house, etc. and just going is always in the back of my mind. Especially when I go on other, shorter backpacking trips.
this
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Obviously overlook anyone stupid enough to overlook a lifechanging experience because it's 'for normies'. If you want to do it, do it.
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>>2497706
Obviously overlook anyone stupid enough to overlook all the other long-distance trails that are similarly "life-changing" and aren't overrun with normalfags like the AT
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Anyone here done the PCT? I've only done sections of it from OR to WA. I have the opportunity to do it this year, but I'm worried about the first half of California. Looks kinda shitty walking through the desert
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I hiked most of the Pinhoti (skipped about 20 miles of road walking, and technically skipped the first short section of the thru hike since I’d done it already). Doing obscure trails is much harder with regards to any kind of guide and resupplying. When I did the Pinhoti, there was barely any info on it. Just some descriptions of the various sections and trail head locations. I was on my own for resupplying. One resupply consisted of just a Dollar General, and not one of the big ones with a full grocery store. Pretty much just goyslop.

Now there’s a Guthooks guide and a pretty comprehensive website. Darwin did a video on it, and I really can’t stand the guy, but it’s basically the only Pinhoti thruhike video out there. None of that changes the fact that these trails have a lot less support.

>>2497676
>you’ll feel like shit after a few days
Have you never hiked for more than a few days?

>>2497678
This sounds like sour grapes.

The AT was designed to pass through some of the most scenic areas in the East. The ease of resupply came about later, as more and more people did it. You have thousands of people hiking it, so hostiles and shuttles spring up to meet the demand, and knowledge is passed from person to person.

>just hike loops lol
Have you ever done this? I’ve found loop trails are very limiting and a little rare.
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>>2497595
why is there a brown bear on the cover? are publishers that stupid? if you tell me it's a cinnamon black bear you need contacts
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>>2498051
Just saying it won’t be as easy. You wouldn’t know because you’ve never done either.
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>>2497595
first 500 miles, and last 500 miles of the A.T. were the best. Almost everything in between was meh.

Hike the C.D.T. instead.
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>>2497595
AT hiker here. I would recommend any of the big 3. Don't listen to autistic keyboard warriors in this thread.
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>>2498085
A lot of people share this sentiment, or at least something similar. Hear it a lot with the whole "Virginia blues" thing and then people hitting PA in the summer.
Why do you think the middle 1000 are meh? Just the grind?
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Just completed my first day of training for the PCT. I got about 5 months to get ready for what I assume is going to be the toughest thing I ever do with my life.
Today I hiked 4.1 miles with a 40lb pack. 900 feet of elevation, up and down. Feeling bretty good. My hips, ass and calves were burning.
I'm feeling pretty optimistic about things
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I'll admit it. I hated that book. 80% of it was the author sounding like a condescending asshole.
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>>2498911
Agreed. The author comes off like an insufferable city fag
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>>2498906
I’ve never seen a good training program for hiking.

He spent 1.5 hours hiking 4 miles. That doesn’t include his time spent driving to or from a trailhead. You could walk in town, but streets are a lot less strenuous, so the argument of training for an activity by doing it is a moot point.

I’m not saying you don’t need to hike or shouldn’t do it to train for a longer hike, I’m just saying there are better ways to go about it. You’re better off spending that hour and a half in a gym, then doing longer hikes on the weekends.

Inb4 “you don’t need to train because it’s just walking.” That’s true if you’ve never pushed yourself, but only faggots never challenge themselves, and here there are no faggots allowed.
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Be me:
AT 2016, PCT 2018, FT-Pinhoti-CT-LT 2021, AZT&BMT 2022
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>>2497697
What's some important pieces of info to know about the trail? I'm afraid I will come too under equipped and quit on day 1
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>>2498085
Because there are a ton of people everywhere. and for the most part, it doesn't feel like wilderness. and ticks everywhere.
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I want to do a thru hike of the appalachian trail but I'm scared of running into people because I'm a tranny and I dont want people to be mean to me
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>>2499500
Anything specific you want to know?
If you're new to backpacking or you're like I was and your experience is limited then just prepare for the difficulty of it. I didn't really and whatever romanticized ideas I had about hiking for several months were quickly shaken out between Amicalola and Neel gap.
But more generally I'd say have your gear dialed before heading out there. i.e. a weight and a pack that's comfortable enough for you to carry all day, shoes that aren't going to cause you blisters, and a sleep system that's warm and comfy. The basics. I saw so many people wash out early on from those things. The saying is that "the AT does 2 things. It goes up, and then it goes down." and you're gonna want to make it as easy as possible for yourself to do that because a lot of those hills are steep. Especially early on through North Carolina where they didn't cut many switchbacks.
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How do I prepare myself to hike the AT as someone without outdoor experience and no /out/ friends? I want to do this in the next few years. I want to come up with a plan for preparing.
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I live in the Rado and i've done sections of the CDT. Gorgeous scenery. Pretty sketch in the mountains because of the storms. Haven't done the desert yet. I like the wide open spaces in the north. Crazy bugs though. Picaridin seemed to work better than deet or permethrin.
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>>2500281
>Get gear that will total less than 35lbs max with 4 days of food and a litre or two of water.
>Test that gear beforehand to make sure it'll work for you.
>Be physically able to hike a minimum of 8 miles a day with that weight on your back.
>Look up which towns have poor or expensive resupply so you can have someone mail/mail yourself a resupply.

>no /out/ friends
You will make friends.
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>>2500477
>You will make friends.
will they be temporary friends or will the relationships last?
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>>2497595
I did the AT and parts of the gdt. Amazing experience.

>>2499500
>too under equipped
hiker boxes are full of stuff people left behind because weight trumped usefulness.

>>2499515
>I dont want people to be mean to me
Hikers are one of the most welcoming groups. You can find groups of people that travel together for safety.

>>2500281
>preparing
Trail will prepare you. You might start walking 10m per day but end up at 25-30 after a month of walking.

>>2500628
>will they be temporary friends or will the relationships last?
Up to you. I will say that I did the AT sobo so I'm glad I didn't have the crowds, and I'm baffled by the nobos that talked about staying in 'the bubble' [of people].
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>>2500281
do what other anons said of being under 35 lbs with food and water. Just be prepared to walk all day. It really isn't that difficult once you get going. A lot of people make the mistake of thinking every day is going to be some magical jaunt through the woods. You will have good and bad times like anything else.
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>>2500628
Column A, column B.
If you hike a long section with someone chances are it'll last. Especially if you're from the same state or continue thru hiking after the AT. Assuming you're capable of maintaining friendships in general I guess.
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Is a 3.66 lb tent gud? That includes poles, stakes and footprint. I don't want to spend $600 on a z-pack tent
Do I even need a tent for the first half of California or should I bivy it?
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>>2498906
https://youtu.be/DZnW7A_rdoY
Maybe this will be helpful, especially the biomechanics part
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>>2498906
I'm going to be doing the AT anon. Let's make our hiking dreams come true.
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>>2502005
>I'm going to be doing the AT anon. Let's make our hiking dreams come true.
I'm literally quitting my job to do this. When I get off trail I'm going to be jobless, homeless and pretty broke
Just adds to the adventure
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Anyone actually planning on doing a thru hike should unironically go to Reddit. It’s a trade off; you can find better info and a larger group of accomplished people, but you can’t call anyone a retarded nigger faggot or tell them to commit suicide.
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>>2501093
a bit on the heavier side, by poles do you mean trekking poles or does it require separate tent poles? if so maybe a bit too heavy. If you have a bivy already you could also just bring a lightweight tarp aswell assuming its one of those bivies with a mesh infront of the head that wont block rain.
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I did the AT this year, NoBo, starting at the end of March. I took 177 days to reach Katahdin. ~30 were zeros. ~15 were nearos. I started the hike with a friend and that made it easy for us to form a group of about 10 hikers. Not that it's hard to find a group. There are so many people you can easily find people you'll get along with and hike at a similar daily pace with. Having a big group meant we often talked eachother into not hiking and instead drinking beer at hostels together, hence the zeros. Because we always had lots of fun the trail was easy. I wasn't prepared properly at all but it is true the trail trains you. All you need to do is decide you'll finish and have the financial means. Any other preparation beforehand will just save you money. Finally, before you ask: Yes we were making all that noise last night.
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>>2502222
was it crowded the entire way
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>>2502233
No. It was only crowded at the start and in the Whites (peak day hiker season). There were people the whole way, sure. But not crowds.
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>>2502017
post pics so we have a before to add to the search and recovery after pics anon
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>>2502100
Its a non-trekking pole tent, so 3.66lbs with DAC poles and 6 stakes
I've been thinking about a bivy but I've had a few people tell me that nothing compares to a tent.
Have you used a bivy? If so, what were your thoughts
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>>2502222
did you make any friends? have you stayed in touch with anyone off the trail?
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>>2502265
Different Anon, but bivy’s are a condensation nightmare on the east coast.

Just get a Durston X Mid and thank us when it arrives.
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>>2502266
tons, we're all still in touch and are planning on linking up for trail days, or other thru hikes
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>>2502270
>bivy’s are a condensation nightmare
I just bought pic rel. Gonna use it this year on the PCT up until the Sierra's, then switch to a tent when bugs become a problem. I have a tyvek ground cloth and 7x9 tarp to go with.
tarp and bivy are by borah
>>2502277
>tons, we're all still in touch and are planning on linking up for trail days, or other thru hikes
good to hear, I'm really hoping to make some friends along the way
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>>2502329
lots of anons on trail desu



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