AT Prep: Itinerary

January 27, 2015 Categories Appalachian Trail, Backpacking, Hiking

I’ve been working on my Appalachian Trail itinerary for the past few days, trying to figure out just where I’ll be and when. I’m attempting to stop in towns as little as possible to avoid the excess cost and temptation of lodging and fancy meals. Contrary to how most people only do a few mail-drops and rely on towns to resupply, I am doing pretty much 100% mail-drops along the way. The downside of this method is it takes a little more planning to ensure you arrive in each town during Post Office hours and on a day they are open.

If I am making excellent time and somehow get to a town before my mail-drop does, I will suck it up and buy food in town and just ditch my scheduled package – I’m not gonna stop and wait for a package to arrive. I plan on having my packages mailed to me two full weeks before I expect to be somewhere, that way I should never arrive before my package does.

I didn’t include “zero” days (rest days) in the itinerary, but I plan on taking 12 to 14 of them. I’m going to try to take them while in a town or near a food source every two or three weeks.

To get to the trail, I’m taking a Greyhound bus to Atlanta. The next morning I’ll take the bus to Gainesville and from there I’ll take a taxi to Amicalola Falls State Park. I’m gonna camp in the park and start the Approach Trail to the AT the following morning. Four days after leaving home, I’ll finally be at Springer Mountain.

Anyway, this is my rough itinerary so far. I expect it will change significantly as I go along. I’m only planning for 15 mile days, but I have no doubt some days I will have energy to do 20 or more and other days I will barely do 10.

  • S = Shelter
  • C = Camping/Campground
  • L = Lodging
  • H = Hostel
  • Towns I plan on getting mail-drops are bold and have a blue background
GEORGIA
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
0Springer Mountain ShelterS9.0
1Hawk Mountain ShelterS8.18.1
2Gooch Mountain ShelterS7.715.8
3Slaughter Creek CampsiteC12.728.5
4Baggs Creek GapC7.435.9
5CampsiteC13.749.6
6Helen, GA 30545 (E-9m)L3.352.9
7Cheese Factory SiteC3.756.6
8McClure GapC10.667.2
9CampsiteC9.276.4
10Georgia / North Carolina Border2.178.5
NORTH CAROLINA
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
10Standing Indian ShelterS7.886.3
11Betty Creek GapC11.397.6
12Franklin, NC 28734 (E-10m)L12.2109.8
13CampsiteC10.5120.3
14Wesser Bald ShelterS11.1131.4
15Sassafras Gap ShelterS12.6144.0
16Cody GapC11.9155.9
17Fontana Dam, NC 28733 (W-1.8m)8.8164.7
17Fontana Dam Visitor Center1.4166.1
GREAT SMOKEY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
Backcountry permits REQUIRED, $20. Purchase and PRINT 30 days prior to visit. http://www.smokiespermits.nps.gov/
17Fontana Dam ShelterS1.1165.8
18Russell Field ShelterS13.8179.6
19Double Spring Gap ShelterS16.4196.0
20Icewater Spring ShelterS13.8209.8
21Tri-Corner Knob ShelterS12.6222.4
22National Park Boundary15.7238.1
NORTH CAROLINA / TENNESSEE BORDER
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
22State Line BranchC1.3239.4
23Roaring Fork ShelterS17.8255.9
24Hot Springs, NC 28743L18.0273.9
25Spring Mountain ShelterS11.0284.9
26Jerry Cabin ShelterS15.4300.3
27Hogback Ridge ShelterS14.7315.0
28CampsiteC15.3330.3
29Erwin, TN 37650 (W-3.8m)H11.7342.0
30Cherry Gap ShelterS17.0359.0
31Roan High Knob ShelterS16.8375.8
32Doll FlatsC13.3389.1
33US 19E3.0392.1
TENNESSEE
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
33CampsiteC16.5408.6
34Pond FlatsC13.4422.0
35Iron Mountain ShelterS18.8440.8
36Abingdon Gap ShelterS15.9456.7
37Tennessee / Virginia Border6.5463.2
VIRGINIA (SOUTHERN)
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
37Damascus, VA 24236L3.7466.9
38CampsiteC17.2484.1
39Big Wilson CreekC16.2500.3
40Trimpi ShelterS19.7520.0
41Chatfield ShelterS17.7537.7
42CampsiteC18.6556.3
43Jenkins ShelterS18.9575.2
44Bland, VA 24315L11.7586.9
45VA 606 (W-0.5m)C18.6605.5
46Doc’s Knob ShelterS17.1622.6
47SpringsC12.4635.0
VIRGINIA (CENTRAL)
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
48Pine Swamp Branch ShelterS15.1650.1
49Laurel Creek ShelterS18.5668.6
50Niday ShelterS12.4681.0
51VA 624 (E-0.4m); Catawba, VA 24070H16.8697.8
52Lamberts Meadow CampsiteC16.6714.4
53Fullhardt Knob ShelterS14.1728.5
54Bobblets Gap ShelterS13.5742.0
55Bryant Ridge ShelterS13.5755.5
56Marbel SpringC17.1772.6
57CampsiteC6.3778.9
58Big Island, VA 24526 (E-5.1m)1.4780.3
59Johns Hollow ShelterS1.7782.0
60Brown Mountain Creek ShelterS18.3800.3
61Porters FieldC16.9817.2
62Harpers Creek ShelterS13.1830.3
63Maupin Field ShelterS6.2836.5
64Paul C. Wolfe ShelterS15.8852.3
65Waynesboro, VA 22980 (W-4.5m)L5.0857.3
VIRGINIA (SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK)
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
66Calf Mountain ShelterS7.7865.0
67Blackrock HutS13.0878.0
68Pinefield HutS13.2891.2
69Bearfence Mountain HutS20.6911.8
70Rock Spring HutS11.5923.3
71Byrds Nest #3 ShelterS10.9934.2
72Luray, VA 22835 (W-8m)L3.2937.4
73Pass Mountain HutS1.2938.6
74Gravel Springs HutS13.1951.7
75Tom Floyd WaysideS10.5962.2
VIRGINIA (NORTHERN)
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
76Manassas Gap Shelter13.6975.8
77Rod Hollow ShelterS12.9988.7
78Sam Moore ShelterS6.9995.6
79Bluemont, VA 20135 (E-1.7m)3.6999.2
80David Lesser Memorial ShelterS10.51,009.7
81Keys Gap3.01,012.7
WEST VIRGINIA
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
81West Virginia / Maryland Border6.31,019.0
MARYLAND
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
81Ed Garvey ShelterS6.31,025.3
82Dahlgren Backpack CampgroundC10.91,036.2
83Ensign Cowall ShelterS13.91,050.1
84Maryland / Pennsylvania Border9.81,059.9
PENNSYLVANIA
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
84Deer Lick ShelterS4.71,064.6
85Fayetteville, PA 17222 (W-3.5m)L13.21,077.8
HALF WAY DONE! Pass the midway point at 1,093 miles
86Birch Run ShelterS10.01,087.8
87James Fry ShelterS17.11,104.9
88Backpackers’ CampsiteC11.51,116.4
88Darlington ShelterS14.81,131.2
89Duncannon, PA 17020C11.41,142.6
90Peters Mountain ShelterS11.21,153.8
91Rausch Gap ShelterS18.01,171.8
92William Penn ShelterS13.41,185.2
93Hertlein CampsiteC9.71,194.9
94Eagle’s Nest ShelterS9.51,204.4
95Port Clinton, PA 195498.61,213.0
95Windsor Furnace ShelterS6.11,219.1
96Allentown Hiking Club ShelterS16.51,235.6
97George W. Outerbridge ShelterS16.91,252.5
98Leroy A. Smith ShelterS16.61,269.1
99Kirkridge ShelterS13.81,282.9
100Delaware Water Gap, PA 18327 (W-0.1m)6.41,289.3
100Pennsylvania / New Jersey Border0.21,289.5
NEW JERSEY
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
100Backpacker CampsiteC4.61,294.1
101Brink Road ShelterS20.01,314.1
102Rutherford ShelterS15.31,329.4
103Pochuck Mountain ShelterS16.71,346.1
104Wawayanda ShelterS11.51,357.6
105New Jersey / New York Border4.11,361.7
NEW YORK
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
105Greenwood Lake, NY 10925 (E-0.9)3.21,364.9
105Wildcat ShelterS4.81,369.7
106Fingerboard ShelterS14.31,384.0
107Hemlock Springs CampsiteC17.61,401.6
108Dennytown RoadC12.31,413.9
109Morgan Stewart ShelterS19.71,433.6
110Wiley ShelterS16.61,450.2
111New York / Connecticut Border1.21,451.4
CONNECTICUT
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
111Mt. Algo ShelterS11.21,462.6
112Kent, CT 06757 (E-0.8m)0.31,462.9
112Caeser Brook CampsiteC13.61,476.5
113Limestone Spring ShelterS15.71,492.2
114Connecticut / Massachusetts Border10.81,503.0
MASSACHUSETTS
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
114Glen Brook ShelterS6.81,509.8
115Tom Leonard ShelterS14.31,524.1
116Shaker CampsiteC11.21,535.3
117October Mountain ShelterS18.71,554.0
118Kay Wood ShelterS8.81,562.8
119Dalton, MA 012263.01,565.8
119Crystal Mountain CampsiteC4.71,570.5
120Wilbur Clearing ShelterS15.81,586.3
121Massachusetts / Vermont Border7.11,593.4
VERMONT
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
122Congdon ShelterS10.01,603.4
123Kid Gore ShelterC18.71,622.1
124Stratton Pond ShelterS15.01,637.1
125Manchester Center, VT 05255 (W-5.8m)L10.71,647.8
126Peru Peak ShelterS10.11,657.9
127Greenwall ShelterS14.01,671.9
128Cooper LodgeS19.41,691.3
129Stony Brook ShelterS16.31,707.6
130Wintturi ShelterS9.91,717.5
131Thistle Hill ShelterS11.61,729.1
132Vermont / New Hampshire Border14.11,743.2
NEW HAMPSHIRE
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
133Hanover, NH 03755C0.51,743.7
Mail cold weather gear?
134Trapper John ShelterC16.71,760.4
135Hexacuba ShelterS12.01,772.4
136Jeffers Brook ShelterS15.71,788.1
137Eliza Brook ShelterC15.91,804.0
138North Woodstock, NH 03262 (E-7.3m)L8.81,812.8
139Garfield Ridge ShelterC10.31,823.1
140Ethan Pond ShelterC14.51,837.6
141Nauman TentsiteC9.31,846.9
142Osgood TentsiteC14.81,861.7
143Imp ShelterC17.91,879.6
144Gorham, NH 03581 (W-3.6m)H8.01,887.6
145Gentian Pond ShelterC11.81,899.4
146New Hampshire / Maine Border4.71,904.1
MAINE
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
147Full Goose ShelterS4.91,909.0
148Frye Notch Lean-toS15.51,924.5
149Hall Mountain Lean-toS10.51,935.0
150Bemis Mountain Lean-toS12.81,947.8
151Little Swift River Pond CampsiteC12.91,960.7
152Rangeley, ME 04970 (W-9m)L4.81,965.5
153Piazza Rock Lean-toS1.81,967.3
154Spaulding Mountain Lean-toS16.91,984.2
155Cranberry StreamC15.41,999.6
156CampsiteC15.92,015.5
157Pierce Pond Lean-toS15.22,030.7
158Bald Mountain Brook Lean-toS18.72,049.4
159Horseshoe Canyon Lean-toS13.02,062.4
160Monson, ME 04464 (E-4m)L9.02,071.4
Now entering the 100-mile wilderness
161Long Pond Stream Lean-toS15.12,086.5
162Chairback Gap Lean-toS10.92,097.4
163Logan Brook Lean-toS17.12,114.5
164Antlers CampsiteS19.62,134.1
165Wadleigh Stream Lean-toS13.62,147.7
166Hurd Brook Lean-toS19.62,167.3
167Katahdin Stream CampgroundC13.42,180.7
168Katahdin5.22,185.9

For a few more examples, you can check out AWOL’s example itineraries below:

After I finish the Appalachian Trail, I plan on renting a car and driving back to Rutland, Vermont where the AT and the Long Trail split. From there, I will hike the Long Trail North to Canada to finish the trail.

LONG TRAIL (VERMONT)
DayDestinationTypeMilesTotal
0Drive from Maine to Rutland, VTL
1David Logan ShelterS12.7+12.7
2Sucker Brook ShelterS12.6+25.3
3Skyline LodgeS9.6+34.9
4Battell ShelterS4.0+38.9
5Waitsfield, VT 05673 (4m)L9.8+48.7
6Birch Glen CampC2.6+51.3
7Montclair Glen ShelterS7.0+58.3
8Richmond, VT 05477 (0.6m)L11.3+69.6
9Puffer ShelterS11.5+81.1
10Taft LodgeS10.2+91.3
11Bear Hollow ShelterS12.6+103.9
11Johnson, VT 05656
12Roundtop ShelterS7.2+111.1
13Spruce Ledge CampC14.7+125.8
14Hazen’s Notch CampC14.5+140.3
15Laura Woodward ShelterS9.5+149.8
16Journey’s End CampC8.7+158.5

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