AT2015

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The not-so-solo not-so-thru hike

Hello again. Remember me? Red Pack is walking again. I’m returning to the trail, however it will be the not-so-solo, not-so-thru hike. As you may recall, things went very wrong with my attempt to do an Appalachian Trail solo thru-hike (see ‘When Things Go Wrong‘). I’ve finally come to terms with everything and accepted that shit happens. I’ve tried to equate my demise to the misfortunes of athletes who spend years of training only to be injured in the finals...

When things go wrong

No matter how much you plan, you must expect the unexpected. Sometimes things just don’t go your way. As heartbreaking as it is, I must accept that my thru-hike has been cut ridiculously short due to a fracture in my calcaneus (heel). Though the fracture is slight, I cannot continue to hike as it will exacerbate the fracture causing very serious injury. I’ve been fortunate that the damage at this point is minimal and should heal nicely as long as...

Add injury to insult

You know the saying ‘It could always be worse’? It’s true. My AT thru-hike seems to be plagued with bad luck. I guess that’s part of the challenge of a thru-hike, stuff happens. My hike started off with uncharacteristically bad weather for Georgia. The road conditions were so bad on Day 1 that I had to start my hike 8.8 miles from where I had originally planned. Instead of starting at Springer Mountain, I had to start at Amicalola Falls,...

Discoveries

After 5 days on the Appalachian Trail, I’ve come to some realizations/discoveries: Thru-hiking is a completely different animal than just hiking. I thought I was a strong hiker…until I started on my thru-hike. The terrain is tough, but hiking takes on a whole new meaning when you are out there day and night. Looking for the white blazes is like an Easter egg hunt. They are far and few between in Georgia. It’s a good thing the trail is well...

The first few hundred steps at Amicalola Falls.

This ain’t a joke…or is it?

As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, my plans were derailed due to bizarre weather. The South was hit with some freakish storms, the entire region from Virginia to Georgia was covered with snow and ice. Because of this, I was unable to start my thru-hike at Springer Mountain and had to start at Amicalola Falls, hiking up 604 steps and continuing on the Approach Trail (adding an additional 8.8 miles). Before we even took our first steps...

My Open

While CrossFitters across the globe are participating in the 2015 Reebok CrossFit Games first Open Workout (aka 15.1), I’m trekking up to Springer Mountain (GA). I’m hiking the approach trail that starts at Amicalola Falls State Park and consists of 604 steps to the top of the falls before continuing on another 7.7 miles before reaching the summit of Springer Mountain. The approach trail is optional when thru-hiking the AT, although there is much debate about that. I’ve been granted...

It begins…

We all hear the stories of obstacles that will be encountered as you hike the AT. Who would have thought that the first obstacle encountered would happen before we even set out to hike! Due to freak storms that have rolled in throughout TN, NC, and GA, there is unheard of amounts of snow on the ground. Oh my God! There’s about 4 inches of snow on the ground! It’s snowmageddon! Now to us who live on the Northeastern part...

Like planning a wedding

Someone equated my preparation of this thru-hike to planning a wedding. I never actually thought about it, but she was spot on. However, unlike getting married, stuff can go wrong. Not ‘the flowers didn’t show up’ wrong, mortally wrong. We are not going to think about that though. We are going to have happy, fuzzy thoughts and all will be well. I don’t remember the exact day I decided to do a thru-hike, but it was in the spring of...

Wish I could do that

When I tell people about my upcoming adventure, many say “I wish I had the time to do that” or “I wish I could just take off and do something like that”. There will never come a point in your life when you will not have responsibilities and alsohave a bunch of disposable income to take on a six-month endeavor.  To take on something such as this, you will have to make sacrifices to make it happen.  As I hear...

Ultralight bullcrap – A rant

In preparing for this hike, I’ve purchased I don’t know how many dollars in equipment. I’ve cut out gear, re-added it, and cut it out again. I’ve reconfigured my pack like a thousand times already and as I’ve mentioned before, all this prep is driving me mad! There’s so much concentration on getting your pack weight down. A a lot off the buzz in all the Facebook groups geared towards thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail is around how much everyone’s pack...