Depends on where you are from…. If you are from the North of the USA, it is the Appa-LAY-shun. If you hail from the South you will know it as the Appa-LATCH-un.
Either way, the Appalachian Trail (AT) has the distinction of being the longest dedicated walking track in the world!
While many other trails are actually longer, the ability to ride bikes, horses and motorised vehicles on them, exclude them from this “Longest Dedicated Walking Track” category.
Spanning 14 states running and up the Eastern side of America.
The Appalachian Trail is (this year 2020) 2193 miles long. Every year revisions are made, by the dedicate volunteers of the many conservation groups, to bypass areas of concern.
This continual assessment and revision of sections maintains safety of hikers and most importantly the natural habitat, of many different flora and fauna.
Famous for Fact or Fiction
You may be unaware that you have experienced the AT, through many books or films.
The diversity of the landscape has featured in many films and books over many different genres.
The romantic green passages and rolling hills to the isolation and creepiness of the thick dark woods.
Have you watched
- A Walk in the Woods – Based on the Bill Bryson book. Starring Robert Redford
- The Last of the Mohicans – Set in the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina. Starring Daniel Day Lewis
- Deliverance – An iconic film that stars Jon Voight and Burt Reynolds
Have you read?, if not you should.
- A Walk in the Woods – By Bill Bryson
- Grandma Gatewoods Walk – Emma Gatewood
- Appalachian Trials – By Zac Davis
So feel like a walk?
A 2000 plus mile walk does sound like a tall task, and in reality only 25% of the estimated 3000 people that attempt it each year, succeed. But don’t let that deter you.
The old adage “you can do anything, if you put your mind to it” has been proven time and time again by the stories of those who despite popular opinion, actually prevail.
In 1955, Grandma Gatewood was 67 when she set off on her adventure. She didn’t have fancy gear, fancy shoes or even any maps. She completed the trail with a shower curtain, for a shelter, and an army blanket, in a denim shoulder bag, that she made herself.
Think that was awesome? Grandma Gatewood was such a hard arse that she went and did it twice more after that. In 1960 at the age of 72 and then again in 1963 at the ripe old age of 75. She still carried nothing fancy.
Needing more assurance?
With our age of the internet world and so many people sharing good (and bad) information. There is an endless supply of advice, reviews and helpul sites out there.
There are countless YouTube videos and Podcasts out there, you are sure to find someone that inspires you.
Some of our favourites are
Mighty Blue – AKA Steve Adams. Mighty Blue or mighty nice. Steve has a long running podcast/website and videos that cover a range of topics. He has everyone from experienced hikers, beginner hikers, ultra athletes and trail angels. This variety is not only helpful or gear and trail stories but so, so inspirational.
Not only that, Steve is a super friendly guy. When we reached out to him for our planning, he didn’t hesitate to give us information and encouragement. Thanks Mighty Blue!
Badger and Chaunce – AKA Zac and Juliana from The Trek and Backpacker Radio.
This pair are entertaining conversationalists that bring the best/worst out of their guests. The show is full of adventure and tips.
Aside from the humour, Zac Davis comes up in conversations with many hikers as an inspiration and mentor.
As author of Appalachian Trials: The Psychological and Emotional Guide to Successfully Thru-Hiking The Appalachian Trail. Zac has helped many hikers train for the tough stuff, the mental side of a through hike.
This book was so popular that he created a Pacific Crest Trail version.
Follow Us On Our Appalachian Trail Journey
Beginning February 28th 2020
4 thoughts on “What is the Appalachian Trail?”
Looking forward to following your adventure.
This is one walk that I’d love to walk a section of when I holiday in America. Enjoy walking the trail.
Thank it is going to be fun…. we hope
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