Remembering the trail…

I thought it would be worthwhile, for me at least, to remember the sections of the A.T. that I’ve done so far. I’ve been reviewing my blog posts recently and that’s brought back at lot of nice memories. So, here we go:

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Section #1
Harpers Ferry, WV to Daleville, VA
June-July 2015
295 miles  28 days (1 zero)  Avg 10.5 mi/day
Most memorable day:  My first day on the trail.  It rained like stink but I was bound and determined to get going on the trail.  I hiked NOBO from Bears Den to the Blackburn Trail Center with my brother in-law.  I bet he thought I was totally nuts!
Best day:  Hike into Skyland in Shenandoah National Park.  Summited Mary’s Rock, the Pinnacle and Old Stony Man all in the same day.  Booked a cabin that evening for a zero the next day.  Ate blackberry cobbler at the restaurant too!  After Skyland I felt like I belonged on the trail and haven’t looked back.

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Puffin with Jeff Wingard – Day #1 of AT hike

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Blackberry Cobbler at Skyland

 


Section #2
Hanover, NH to Great Barrington, MA
August 2015
218 miles  21 days (2 zeros)  Avg 10.4 mi/day
Most memorable day:  Hiking into N Adams, Mass.  I hiked with Wildcat for part of the day as we finished off Vermont.  We ran into Dixie and I couldn’t believe someone like her was hiking the trail.  Little did I know how famous she would become!
Best day:  Hiking out of N Adams, Mass. After spending my zero day with my brother Nat,  I hiked down off the summit of Mount Graylock all the way to Dalton, Mass.  I found Wildcat again and we ate an awesome meal at the local pub.

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Dixie before she was famous

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Puffin on top of Mount Graylock                     (Still not famous)


Section #3
Great Barrington, MA to Great Barrington, MA
July 2016
7 miles  2 days (No zeros)  Avg NAappalachian-trail-2016
Most memorable day:  It was hotter than stink when I left Tom Leonard shelter before 7 am on Day #2.  I couldn’t to sleep in the shelter overnight and ended up getting up in the middle of the night to set up my hammock.  I hiked about 5 miles in the heat, fell once, broke a trekking pole and had a trail side cat hole accident, which I won’t discuss further.  When I ran into a NOBO hiker he told me that he hadn’t seen any water for many miles.  I only had 1 liter with me, so I took the bus to Albany, flew to BWI and visited Betsy at the beach!  My hiking plans for 2016 were a bust…
Best day:  On my first day, the 2 mile uphill hike to the shelter was manageable and it felt nice to be back on the trail.

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White Blaze in Mass


Section #4
Harpers Ferry, WV to Duncannon, PA
March 2017
124 miles  10 days (No zeros)  Avg 12.4 mi/dayappalachian-trail-2017
Most memorable day:  Hiking in the rain and the cold weather.  I finally felt like I had adjusted to the elements and managed just fine.
Best day:  Slack packing from Pine Grove Furnace to Trail of Hope Hostel.  The weather was beautiful and it was my first 20 mile day on the AT!

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Hiking in the rain

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Half Way Point in PA


Section #5
Duncannon, PA to Port Clinton, PA
June-July 2018
69 miles  6 days (No zeros)  Avg 11.5 mi/dayAT2018
Most memorable day:  OMG What a storm!  There were 6 inches of rain in 2 1/2 hours overnight.  I stayed dry under my hammock, the the trail was flooded out the next day.  Several of us spent most of the day finding ways around flooded out sections of trail.
Best day:  Day #1, I hiked up to the ridge from Duncannon and camped overlooking Harrisburg, PA.  It was a very pretty night.

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Flooded out trail

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Overlooking PA


Section #6
Daleville, VA to Damascus, VA
May 2019
259 miles  23 days (2 zeros)  Avg 11.3 mi/dayAT 2019
Most memorable day:  Slack packing from the Dragon’s Tooth back to Jake and Christie’s place for the night.  The sights were great and the second part of the hike was some of the best trail I’ve done.  This was all in spite of pouring rain!
Best day:  Hiking through Grayson Highlands to Mount Rodgers.  It’s just an epic part of the trail.

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Puffin at Dragon’s Tooth

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Ponies at Grayson Highlands


So that’s it.  Six section hikes over 5 years, totaling about 975 miles on the Appalachian appalachian-trail-2020Trail.  I’m not expecting this next section to be particularly beautiful or memorable.  It’s going to be all about the challenge of getting 300+ miles done and hooking up all of the above sections.  If it goes as planned, I will have done from Hanover, NH to Damascus, VA.  1,280 miles!


 

No dream is too big. No challenge is too great. Nothing we want for our future is beyond our reach. – Donald Trump

 

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