Author Topic: Appalachian info?  (Read 1272 times)

The Wondering Wanderer

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Appalachian info?
« on: 19:12:46, 26/01/18 »
Has anyone on the forums thru hiked the appalachian trail? This is my dream.


Any hikes between now and then are essentially fillers and practice for my ultimate goal.


Unfortunately it's going to take at least a decade before I can afford it and that's if I start saving right now. Even when I can afford it I may not be able to do it as I'm currently in the forces (might not be in a decade. Who knows?) So trying to swing 6 months leave might be a difficult sell.


I've already been researching it for over a year. While there's abundant information and blogs and vlogs on the trail itself, I've found it difficult to find first hand information on the extra logistics required when attempting it from overseas.


There's the obvious travel arrangements to be made. I wondered if people prebooked their flights home (meaning they would have a time limit on completing the trail)? or if there was a way to get an open return ticket? Or just buy the return ticket when finished? I know you need a special visa for it. I was also wondering if people who've hiked it from the uk sent themselves supply drops or bounce boxes, or just bought everything en route?


Sorry it's alot of questions. I'm kind of obsessed with this trail.
I'm wondering about wandering and wonder where I might wander if I wander while I wonder.

gunwharfman

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #1 on: 20:25:49, 26/01/18 »
Sorry, never been to the USA, could never make up my mind where I wanted to go. I've seen the film though with Robert Redford, that satified any urge I had to go.

Mel

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #2 on: 22:49:14, 26/01/18 »
Last time I travelled to the USA was on a "visa-waiver" (before 9/11).  Maximum of 3 months in the USA and proof of pre-booked outbound/homeward flight essential.  I think for anything up to or over 6 months you have many political hoops to jump through to prove you're not going to try and remain in the country indefinitely.  I think, again, proof of a pre-booked homeward flight will be essential.  I can only assume security has been tightened further since 9/11.  Perhaps this is why there's not much info available from non-USA residents thru-hiking the trail?


Personally, I think it would be easier/less complicated to hike it in blocks of 3 months on a "visa-waiver" form but, if you think you could do it in 6 months and pass the Consulate interviews then bluddi-well go for it.  What an amazing adventure it would certainly be  O0




No expense spared in pursuit of a bargain ;)
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The Wondering Wanderer

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #3 on: 10:03:36, 27/01/18 »
I've seen the film though with Robert Redford, that satified any urge I had to go.


That's where I first heard of it. Now I have to go! I will not be content until I've done it. It's become a life goal.


Thanks for the heads up on the visas Mel. From what I understand it's a pretty involved process to get an extended visa. What little info I found on it confirms what you said about the hoop jumping. But as long as you go through the processes it's apparently not too difficult to get it approved.
I'm wondering about wandering and wonder where I might wander if I wander while I wonder.

Mylo

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #4 on: 20:04:37, 28/01/18 »
I've just finished Keith Fosketts 'Balancing on Blue'. A brilliant account of his time on the Appalachian trail.

Recommended reading for anyone who wants to attempt it.

roughyed

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #5 on: 16:10:31, 29/01/18 »
There's the obvious travel arrangements to be made. I wondered if people prebooked their flights home (meaning they would have a time limit on completing the trail)? or if there was a way to get an open return ticket? Or just buy the return ticket when finished? I know you need a special visa for it. I was also wondering if people who've hiked it from the uk sent themselves supply drops or bounce boxes, or just bought everything en route?
Sorry it's alot of questions. I'm kind of obsessed with this trail.


You can buy a flexible ticket on most airlines (which means you can move it to another flight, if there is room, for free).  They cost more however.


You will likely need a different visa to the usual ESTA as that only allows a 90 day stay.  So you will need to go to the American embassy and get an interview. 


You can't post most foods from the UK, so its easier to have a few days/week free at the start to sort out your bounce box/supplies. 

Ridge

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #6 on: 16:24:45, 29/01/18 »
Having had to get a work visa for the USA I would advice giving yourself LOTS of time to get it organised. You will need to have at least 6 months on your passport after your return date and make sure that you are OK to be without your passport for all the time from your application until your trip. A love of queuing will also come in handy.
If you've traveled anywhere in the middle east or Africa you will have to declare it but it may still be worth getting a new passport that doesn't have any stamps from those areas in it.
Over hill, over dale. Thorough brush, thorough brier....
I do wander every where

The Wondering Wanderer

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #7 on: 11:30:55, 30/01/18 »
Thanks everyone for the advice/info.


The one upside to the fact I won't be able to do it for at least a decade is that I have plenty of time for all the preparations.


make sure that you are OK to be without your passport for all the time from your application until your trip.
Do they take it from you or something? That might be inconvenient.
Thanks for the heads up.
I'm wondering about wandering and wonder where I might wander if I wander while I wonder.

Slogger

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #8 on: 21:39:51, 30/01/18 »
some years ago I bumped into an old friend from our running club. H ehad just returned from walking the Appalachian Trail. I said to him that I didn't know he did walking too. He told me that it was his first ever 'Hike', a through hike at that, took him around 6 months.
When I asked him what it was like, his first comment was "There were a lot of tree's".

Mel

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #9 on: 22:10:31, 31/01/18 »
.... the film though with Robert Redford, ...


A Walk in the Woods is on Film4 right now!
No expense spared in pursuit of a bargain ;)
https://snailspacewalks.blogspot.co.uk/

Doddy

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #10 on: 19:23:42, 30/03/18 »

I have just seen this post. I have done over 1000 miles on the Appalachian trail. I did it in three sections a few years apart but include both termini of the trail in Maine and Georgia with a large chunk in the middle; visiting seven of the thirteen States involved. It is a very sociable trail and many interesting people and wildlife are met.
 I do hope to go back to complete some of the gaps I have- first probably Daleville, VA to Harpers Ferry, WV. I have done Harpers Ferry to Boiling Springs, PA deep in the Civil War area; one time sitting by a creek for lunch if Union or Confederate troops had trotted by I would have believed it. The countryside was so familiar from the odd film I have seen on the war.
 Apart from the flights to get there it can be an economical trip as you have only food to find. Visiting trail towns is a must to get the atmosphere, resupply, have a decent meal or two and hostel for a shower. A thru hike is estimated at $2+ a mile but as the trail is over 2000 miles long about $5000 may be required. However some do it on less-it does depend on how many towns you visit and how long you stay there. Sometimes I went into town arriving in the afternoon; resupplied, did laundry, had a big meal, stayed the night then left after a big breakfast. I recall eating a five egg omelette ! - you do get a hiker appetite after many miles. Trail town visits/resupply were usually five days apart so not too much food weight is added to your pack.

The Wondering Wanderer

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Re: Appalachian info?
« Reply #11 on: 20:22:04, 30/03/18 »
I've been thinking about section hiking it while I'm waiting to do the whole thing through.


Just a couple of weeks at a time.


From watching the youtubers who vlog it I've seen what you mean about the social side. I love the look of the american hiking community. And even those who don't hike seem to be very supportive of those who do.
I'm wondering about wandering and wonder where I might wander if I wander while I wonder.