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WFO50+ - Appalachian Trail Journal - 2018

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Journalist
City: Freeland
State: Maryland
Country: US
Begins: Mar 18, 2018
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Thu, Mar 1st, 2018

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 614
Journal Visits: 6,202
Guestbook Views: 64
Guestbook Entrys: 13

Appalachian Trail Map

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Finish of Colorado Trail, Durango

Physical and Mental Preparations

It is hard to believe it has been a year since I was preparing to leave for the Arizona Trail! I can remember how anxious I was about EVERYTHING! I planned and planned and planned. The learning curve was sooo steep. I poured over resupply towns and changed my resupply strategy at least four times. After thru hiking 1300 miles last year (I did the CT in the summer), my attitude is much more chill. However, I'll admit that hiking a different trail still gets a level of anxiety going. My attitude was a bit cavalier about the AT until I looked at the elevation change on Guthook. The 540 mile section I will be doing has 129,000 ft of climb while the CT at 485 miles had 92,000 ft of climb. Now the AT has my attention and probably will soon have my respect. There is also the March weather in the mountains that promises to be cold and wet. I'm looking forward to the weather challenge as my number one challenge. I've hiked steep before, and I may have to adjust my miles per day, but the weather is a factor I will have to account for and roll with. I'm also anticipating the trail crowds and welcoming the social aspect of this trail. There are about 35 people starting per day in March so I will have about 100 people within +/- 1 day of me. I doubt I'll get lonely! Will I miss the solitude of the Arizona Trail? Will the shelter antics be too much for a geezer like me? I'm trying not to have expectations, but thats what us humans do. The trail teaches you to stay unattached to expectations. This is a hard lesson to learn and a harder one to live.

Physically, I'm in such a different spot than I was last year after recovering from a 1-4-17 surgery. I wasn't sure I was going to get much training in, and I was a little wacked that I didn't train to the level I wanted before I started the AZT. Guess what? It all worked out! Hiking a long trail is like taking one chill pill after the other. This year I'm getting several training hikes in, but I"m not near as uptight about it. I've done a couple winter backpacking trips, and a lot of day hikes. I'm sure I'll get to exactly where I need to be before I start. It will all work out!

I've got my flight booked to Atlanta, and Ron is going to take me to Amicolola Falls for the 9 mile approach trail to Springer. With any luck, I'll make the start of the AT the same day I fly! I'm excited, but also a lot more confident than this time last year!

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Jim's Nobo AT Journey

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: www.appalachiantrail.org

 

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