The Appalachian Trail is a famous trail in eastern United States of America. The trail is approximately 2000 miles long, with changes added periodically. Most of the trail is wilderness with smaller parts passing through towns, cities and crossing rivers. With many clubs and associations connected with the trail, The Appalachian is one of three long distance trails within the United States. Hiking groups and associations aim to hike the trail in one season and there are many books and websites that are dedicated to what is possibly, one of the most famous trails in the world.
If you're planning to hike the trail, pre-preparation is the key to a successful trip. Hiking is a high-risk activity and there is plenty to prepare for such a monumental trip.
A well-equipped hiking kit is necessary and the following lists vital items that will make up a good hiking kit.
- Sleeping Bag suitable for Extreme Conditions
- Torch or Headlamp & Spare Batteries
- Insect Repellant & First Aid Kit
This list provides an example of some of the items you may need. Your club or organisation may well recommend you send ahead some items such as a phone charger or extra items for your first aid kit, which are not needed all the time on the trail, but there are designated pick up points along the trail where you can meet up with your sent ahead items.
Clothing & Footwear
There is little danger of over-packing and the fact that you are carrying everything will limit you to those little extras. Depending on what time of year your hike is planned will determine your clothing. Correct hiking footwear is vital and will help to prevent accidents and the correct clothing will protect you from extreme hot or cold weather. Make sure you have the correct seasonal clothing, layers will be best for keeping warm and cotton is essential for warmer months.
Before commencing on the trail, it would be wise to let your doctor know that you're planning a trip so that your health can be assessed. Training such as building your ankle strength, which can be overlooked on a daily basis. Build your muscular strength for a period of three months and ask your doctor for recommendations on how to increase weak areas that may be compromised under extreme conditions. Learn how to pitch a tent and practice as much as you can to pitch the tent quickly and swiftly. Learn the basic first aid techniques to tend to other members of your hiking group.
The Appalachian Trail is a trip you will never forget, despite the preparation required, you will have one of the most exhilarating experiences that life can offer. The Trail is home to amazing Flora & Fauna with endangered species and rare plants. Bears are seen rarely, but mosquitoes and other insects bite hikers frequently, however the Trail is considered safe. The scenery is amazing and the photographic opportunities risen are incredible. With mountains, lakes, arresting and breath-taking scenery and passing through many states, there is no shortage of memories to take home.