FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We’ve been getting a lot of questions from our curiously awesome support network so I decided to consolidate some of the ones we are getting on the reg. Thank you so much for your interest in our journey y’all! :)
1. When are you leaving for the AT?
We are leaving Austin JUNE 3rd (right after we wrap up the school year) and heading to Denver for a quick visit to the sisters and Robbie, then to Pennsylvania for a cousin’s wedding in Philly and celebrate Jamie’s mom’s birthday. We plan to hit the trail around 6/16/18.
2. How long do you think it will take you to thru hike the AT?
Conservatively, 6 months. On the fast side, 4 months. Realistically, somewhere in between. The AT is 2,200 miles long (from Georgia to Maine) and the average person completes the trek in 5-7 months. There really is no way of knowing how long it will take us because many unplanned events will occur that might either speed us along or slow us down. We are planning with the more conservative number to make sure we have ample food supply and flexibility in our schedule. With that said, we don’t want to take too many rest days (known as “zero days”) so we can stay motivated and keep moving along. We are not bound to any timeline, so our plan is to have no real plan and do what we can with each day. One foot in front of the other.
3. Where will you sleep on your AT hike?
The AT has shelters about every 8 miles along the trail (What used to be considered “a day’s worth of walking”). Many of these shelters are 3 sided lean-to’s (no more than a roof with three walls) and the occasional cabin or hut (there is a series of huts in New Hampshire). We will likely camp half the time and stay in shelters the other half. The advantage to the shelter is that it keeps you dry if there is rain and can be a fun place to mingle with other hikers. However, the shelters can fill up, so if we have a long day we may be arriving late. There is also the added annoyance of rats, mosquitoes and other unwanted critters in the shelters, so we look forward to being in our tent as often as possible! We will also have some pit stops in towns for resupplying our food, and look forward to the treat of a real bed and a shower (thanks in advanced friends and hostels!)
4. How much food will you carry? How often do you resupply?
We plan to carry about 80-100 miles worth of food, so about 4-6 days in between resupply points.
5. How long will you hike each day?
We are hoping to get in about 6-8 hours of hiking each day, averaging between 15-20 miles per day.
6. What are some of the biggest risks?
The biggest risk is getting Lyme Disease from deer ticks on the AT. The deer ticks are so tiny and hard to see and the bites don’t hurt at all, so they can go missed. Many hikers are afflicted with Lyme Disease and we plan to take a lot of precaution! Other risks include snakes, bears, or getting injured.
7. What are you guys going to do when you’re done?
Our plan is very much to not have a plan for when we are done. We are loving the idea of taking the time to really be present on the trail. Having something already lined up and ready to go when we come back is not congruent with our intention; presence and connection. We will most certainly be different people when we get to Springer Mountain, GA in the fall, and want to honor those people by not letting the people we are today overplan for them. In general, we are “planning” to not “overplan” to allow for some freedom, creativity and opportunities for our near future.