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Topic: the AT thru Shenendoah?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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Rachael Search for posts by this member.

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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 18 2013, 5:47 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

im hoping to take a week-ten days in may or june & hike as much of the AT thru Shenendaoh park as i can & have some questions for those with experience!  first, from my little bit of experience in the park i've thought  the sidetrails are more strenuous than walking thru on the AT-am i correct?  im a non-backpacking(have only backpacked a couple times) flatlander who can walk about 8-9 miles in 3 hours here on my flatland, can this be translated to  AT travel in the park? how do i figure where i'll be camping for filling out those pesky backcountry permits?  at that time of year i should only need tshirt,shorts, rainjacket and maybe a long sleeve shirt for the trip??
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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 19 2013, 8:54 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I would by the trail guide and map for the AT through the park. Google the PATC web site. In May you might need more clothing. It's relatively easy travel except at the main gaps were you climb off of the ridge only to climb back up again. By that point in their journey the real through hikers are cranking out close to 20 miles per day but they're starting at sunrise and ending at sunset.

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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 19 2013, 11:31 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Grab the backcountry permit at a ranger station before your hike, or at the pay station if you enter through skyline drive.  They are free I believe.
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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 19 2013, 1:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

i already have the 3 maps and the paperback book for the park and am pretty familiar with the layout. i just have doubts about speed of travel with a pack on-not any lightweight thing either with the gear i have(not expensive) ill be lucky to get my pack below 35lbs. im hoping to get up at dawn and get hiking as quickly as i can in the morning,hike through the day, and my camping will be determined (i guess!)by where i can find an appropriate tree i can get a food bag hung i in before dark -not very good at that in the past!  the other question is the weather-i know its different in the mountains than here on Delmarva and can be unpredictable, but i dont want to have to carry clothes, so may have just bumped the trip to june? any other suggestions or other things i need to know?  thanks for helping me out here!
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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 19 2013, 1:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

If you camp at the shelters I believe they have poles to hang your food on .. at least the ones I saw did.

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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 19 2013, 1:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

you could probably get away with carrying only one pair of clothes.  just make sure to also bring rain gear and a change of socks.  june can be stormy.
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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 21 2013, 4:26 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Even if it's shorts and T during the day it's liable to be much cooler in the mornings and evenings when you won't be moving.  Pack some thin extra layers and a warm softshell/fleece so you can adjust as needed.

I recommend pants treated with permethrin.  The ticks were pretty nasty when we were there a few years ago.

The AT through the park is relatively easy hiking, especially in the southern half where you pass waystations and campgrounds.  There will be public restrooms available in that area as well as stores/restaurants.  Check your guidebook for details--you can carry less food if you plan accordingly.

If you stay at the shelters and campgrounds there are poles and boxes for food storage.  The local bears are quite accustomed to seeing people so proper food storage is a must.


Mileage translation is tough but you'll probably be hiking for more than 3 hours every day.  I would think that hiking shelter to shelter or campground would be easily doable for anyone in decent shape with a little bit of stamina.
 
Bailout is easy since Skyline drive is never far.  I seem to remember cell reception being pretty consistent as well.


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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 21 2013, 5:10 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

im planning on backcountry camping the entire time and probly wont be taking advantage of the restaurants and such. since mileage is uncertain for me i think ill plan on being self sufficient. think i should start at the south or north end? ive heard the terrain is easier going south to north??
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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 21 2013, 9:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You start at 2000 feet on either end of the park so you're covering the same elevation change no matter what.  The Northern stretch is a bit rocky and the middle to South bits are just dirt track in places since they see more use.  The animals are NOT afraid of people. Which was really bizarre to me.  I walked past deer, close enough to touch them and they didn't think anything of it.

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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 22 2013, 2:04 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

i like that about the animals, especially the skunks!  i dont really want to encounter a curious bear though seems like it could be a hassle!
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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 24 2013, 8:11 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Rachael @ Mar. 22 2013, 2:04 pm)
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i like that about the animals, especially the skunks!  i dont really want to encounter a curious bear though seems like it could be a hassle!

I don't thin k people are feeding the skunks.

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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 30 2013, 7:56 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I found my original trip plan for that stretch.  It's a little bit more aggressive than what you're planning, with another 50 miles added on at the northern end, but you could use the first 5 days as a rough guide--there are shelters in between these points.  I used an Appalachian Trail Data Book for planning.

Day 1
Rockfish Gap Black Rock Hut 20 miles w

Day 2
Black Rock Hut Hightop Hut 21.4 miles w
Stop @ loft Mountain Campground grocery and eats
Day 3
Hightop Hut Big Meadows 20.6 miles CLM 0.1mE
Stop @ Lewis Mtn CG grocery
Day 4
Big Meadows Pass Mtn Hut 19.7 m w
Stop @ Skyland Service Rd (n) for meals 0.3mW
Stop @ Thornton Gap for groceries/meals?  On AT 1 mile from shelter
Day 5
Pass Mtn Hut Tom Floyd Wayside 23.6 m w
Stop @ Elkwallow Gap—Grocery/Meals 0.1mE
Day 6
Tom Floyd Wayside Dicks Dome Shelter 18 m w

Day 7
Dicks Dome Shelter Sam Moore Shltr 15.3 m w

Day 8
Sam Moore Blackburn 10.9 m Car


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PostIcon Posted on: Mar. 31 2013, 1:46 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

thats good to see and know, but i dont see myself able to walk miles like that in a day- im hopeful for 10 a day!  i just hiked 4.5 flat trail miles in 1 hour 40 minutes yesterday with a 40lb or so pack, so apparently i only really have one speed and its not really gonna get me far in a day- especially when i get to the ups im not used to!! the good news is my pack seems to fit well enough even with a bit more weight than i think ill have in gear/food in june. also found out my new "20 degree" bag is good for 40, or i just shivered/slept unusually cold for 2 nights. now i just have to overcome sore,screwy muscles & arthritis in my throwing arm for the bear bag hanging :D
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 13 2013, 10:16 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

4.5 miles in less than two hours with (gasp) 40lbs on your back is actually pretty good.  Days are long in June.  Take shorts breaks and you should easily cover 20 a day.  Leave extra time for the blue blazes, the AT is pretty boring in SNP.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 17 2013, 7:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

Don't know if this is useful or not, but here is a link to my trail journal from 1989 (damn, I'm old  :;): ) - pretty much the same trip you're planning.
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14 replies since Mar. 18 2013, 5:47 pm < Next Oldest | Next Newest >

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