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Matt Edwards - Appalachian Trail Journal - 2011

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Matthew Edwards
City: Santa Clara
State: California
Country: United States
Begins: Mar 15, 2011
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Sun, Nov 14th, 2010

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 4,816
Journal Visits: 55,853
Guestbook Views: 5,237
Guestbook Entrys: 82

Gear list Journal Plan

Appalachian Trail Map

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The start of the PCT

Triple in Three

The Triple Crown in Three years. The Pacific Crest trail, Continental Divide trail, and Appalachian Trail comprise what is know as The Triple Crown. Back in 1991 when I had the crazy idea I was going to hike the PCT I mistakenly referred to it as the CDT. Well, I have hiked both those trails. Why not complete the trio of long distance hiking? I can't think of a single reason not to do so when there are 2100 miles left to explore. Sure there are plenty of long trails other than these. There are plenty of other places in which to invent new trails. But right at this moment I can't think of anything else i would want to do than hike the Appalachian trail.

I have tentatively decided on a Northbound start from Springer Mountain Georgia around the middle of March. Somewhere in the back of my mind there is the thought that I might go Southbound from Mt Katahdin Maine in late May instead. By all accounts the two directions result in very different hiking experiences. As yet I am undecided on this point. I have all the gear for the hike already. I have my thru hike strategy fresh in my mind from two seasons of long distance trails. The AT is going to be a different hike though. As one hiker named Mags puts it, It may not be a wilderness experience so much as it is a wildness experience. It is going to be a journey either way. In fact many who have hiked the triple crown descibe the AT as the most physically demanding of the three trails. There are a lot of ups and downs and many places where the trail passes beneath a canopy of trees. The AT is referred to as the "Long Green Tunnel" sometimes. Whichever direction I chose to travel it seems I cannot lose. The AT awaits and I am going thru.


P.S. I have updated my gearlist. It represents everything I have learned on these long trails so far. There are a few items that might get swapped in or out of the line up, but my overall strategy is to be as light as possible. No other single factor has contributed more to my enjoyment of hiking in the past 20 years than my decision to go "ultra-light" and embrace the hiking strategies that make it possible to do so with the margin of safety I find acceptable. I don't suggest anyone make a leap to ultralight based on someone elses decision to do so.

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Journal Photo

Appalachian Trail-Triple Crown

The Appalachian Trail (A.T.) is more than 2,175-mile long footpath stretching through 14 eastern states from Maine to Georgia. Conceived in 1921 and first completed in 1937, it traverses the wild, scenic, wooded, pastoral, and culturally significant lands of the Appalachian Mountains. Learn more:


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