A while back I made a decision that when I retired I would hike the Appalachian Trail. Even though it is almost two years away, I am glad that I have that time to plan for this six month adventure. As I have watched videos of thru hikers, I have come to one conclusion. You have to know what gear you need/want and you have to know whether it works for you or against you.
On Wednesday of next week I will be heading out to Harriman State Park with two friends to backpack the Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail. Running a little over 21 miles, the trail begins at the Tuxedo RR station and ends on route 9W on the opposite side of the park.
I am considering this my first shakedown hike in preparation for the AT. A shakedown hike is described by Brian Lewis as a “…longish backpacking trip where you try out your gear and associated process to find out if there are things you can improve (in either) before your thru-hike. And hopefully it will also confirm that hiking somewhat longer distances is something you really want to do.” My first shakedown will be three days and two nights.
Will I like the gear that I have? Will I want to do another trip, maybe longer before I make any final decisions? I don’t know. Only time will tell!
Over the next few days I am going to post some of the new gear that I have as well as the tried and true that I am pretty sure I will use on the AT.
Please feel free to leave your comments!
Please read more about shakedown hikes here:
Happy hiking! Hope you enjoy your shake down 🙂
Thank you very much! I am looking forward to it and will have a rundown on the blog (with pictures!) sometime over that next weekend!
How does your wife feel about you leaving for 6 months? Just thinking and maybe causing a bit of trouble
LikeLiked by 1 person
Hey Jan, I hope that all is well with you and yours! Not causing any trouble at all!! She isn’t totally thrilled but she knows this is something that I have wanted to do since I got out of the Corps. If I don’t do it when as soon as I retire, I fear I won’t ever do it. Anyway, think about this-at that point we will have been married for 32 years. Is 6 months really that long? 🙂