Despite the coronavirus, you can legally thru-hike the Appalachian Trail right now. But should you?

Due to the coronavirus pandemic that has dislodged the United States’ social order and crippled its economy, the question of whether or not to attempt a thru-hike has become an actual life-or-death conundrum—and a question of what it means to put strangers before yourself. A week ago, concerns about the coronavirus and thru-hiking centered mostly on supplies. With...

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Man who hiked 2,180-mile Appalachian Trail 18 times headed to Hall of Fame

Warren Doyle, of Mountain City, Tennessee, has hiked the entire 2,180-mile Appalachian Trail 18 times, including nine thru-hikes. He also led eight group thru-hikes of the AT, seven of which saw a 100 percent completion rate among the hikers. But there’s so much more on Doyle’s resume that has earned him a spot among the Appalachian Trail Museum’s 10th class of inductees...

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Hikers behaving badly: Appalachian Trail partying raises ire

More than 830 people completed the 2,189-mile Appalachian Trail last year, up from just 182 in 1990, according to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, based in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. At Baxter State Park in Maine, the northern terminus of the AT, the number of registered long-distance hikers grew from 359 in 1991 to more than 2,000 in 2014. The growing number of...

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Knoxville woman takes on Appalachian Trail solo hike

Gretchen Pardon is a computer programmer, wife, YouTuber and avid hiker. On Thursday, February 20, 2020 in Amicalola Falls, Georgia, she began a journey she has been dreaming about for several years. She is thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail solo. Pardon has always been active but started hiking and backpacking as a serious hobby more than 5 years ago. She became a...

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Woman with Multiple Sclerosis Will Be Trekking 2,200 Miles on the Appalachian Trail with Her Husband to Raise Awareness

On May 4, 2020 a Beaufort, SC husband and wife team comprised of Bernie and April Hester begin the journey of a lifetime as they embark on a 2,200-mile hike on the Appalachian Trail to raise awareness for the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Traversing over mountains, trails, cities and roadways April, who suffers from multiple sclerosis (MS), is hoping that her efforts...

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Harpers Ferry Train Derailment Damages Bridge on Appalachian Trail

Two freight cars fell into the Potomac River near Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, early in the morning December 21, 2019 when part of a Maryland-bound train derailed, according to a CSX spokesman. The train was traveling between Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, and Sandy Hook Road in Maryland when seven grain cars derailed over Winchester and Potomac Railroad Bridge. All the...

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Stories of the Appalachian Trail: A Recommended Book List

Thru-hikers and section hikers always have a story about what brought them to the trail. The Appalachian Trail in particular is swarming with folklore, so nearly everyone remembers the first story they heard about the 2,000+ mile footpath that weaves uninterrupted from Georgia to Maine. Sometimes the magic is captivated in a single moment; for others several instances...

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6-year-old girl breaks hiking record with family on Appalachian Trail

This family made history, and they almost did it in time for the start of the school year. The Malones spent the months of February through August, hiking the entire Appalachian Trail. 20 years after her first Appalachian hike, Jamie, her husband Chris, and their four daughters, Maya,13, Harper, 11, Josie, 8, and Sabina, 6, camped in snow, and hiked across rivers and up...

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The Controversial Plan to Protect America’s Trails

There are 11 designated national scenic trails stretching across nearly 18,000 miles in the U.S. But there are more than 4,000 miles of privately owned “gaps” in the system that leave routes vulnerable to a change in ownership or a landowner’s whims. Typically, the government or nonprofit trail associations work to fill such gaps by purchasing land from willing sellers....

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‘Honeymoon Hikers’ complete fourth hike of Appalachian Trail

They call themselves the “Honeymoon Hikers” and they just completed their fourth hike of the Appalachian Trail. Winston and Marcia Terry have done a lot of hiking since they got married in 2010. The couple has hiked 14,000 miles together. While there are no official records, Marcia is believed to be the only woman who has made four complete trips on the AT. But how did...

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Is a Green Future Worth Spoiling the Appalachian Trail?

  A proposed hydropower transmission line in Maine would impact the AT, wildlife, recreation, and tourism. Is it worth it? The proposed project, known as New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC), is a 145-mile transmission line winding down from the Canadian border through Maine’s forests, and would ferry hydroelectric energy from Canadian dams to the New...

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Appalachian Trail Finishers Share 99 Tips for Aspiring Thru-Hikers

  If you’re thinking about hiking the Appalachian Trail, you probably have a lot of questions. Who better to answer them than the people who have already been there and done that? Experienced thru-hikers were surveyed to get their best advice about hiking the Appalachian Trail. It can be difficult to get friends and family on board, but reassure them the best...

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An Appalachian Trail Thru-Hiker On The Need To Protect Our Wild Spaces

This year on her birthday, Carolyn Burman decided to do a solo hike in one of her favorite state parks in Connecticut. She has magical memories of that trek. She grew up hiking it — her mother even went into labor with her while walking the path. She looked forward to a peaceful, reflective experience in nature. Instead, she found something else. “There was so much...

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‘The Hiking Vikings’ Make Appalachian Trail Signs

Appalachian Trail thru-hikers agree that the sign on Mount Katahdin in Maine signifies the pinnacle of a journey that changes you forever. A local couple who completed their thru-hike in 2015 found there were signs along the way that held life-altering messages too. Nate and Sharon Harrington, known to those on the trail as “The Hiking Vikings,” started their hike on...

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What are the Best Restaurants on the Appalachian Trail?

From the perspective of a thru-hiker, there are few things that matter more than the meals to be devoured upon reaching the next town. After a few consecutive days of cold tuna, ramen, and beef jerky, hikers’ dreams are infiltrated with visions of bacon cheeseburgers, pepperoni pizzas, and Ben and Jerry’s. When you’re few hundred miles south of Catawba, you start...

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Resupplying and Accessing Towns Along the Appalachian Trail

Resupplying on the Appalachian Trail is easier then you might think. While the heart of the AT takes you through the Appalachian mountains and there are certainly remote parts of the trail, it also takes you within practical distances from dozens of towns and communities along the way. The AT takes hikers within reach of a town every three to seven days on average. These...

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An Appeals Court Has Rejected a Request to Hold a New Hearing for an Appalachian Trail Pipeline

  A federal appeals court denied a request to reconsider a ruling throwing out a permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to cross two national forests, including parts of the Appalachian Trail. The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a request from lead pipeline developer Dominion Energy and the U.S. Forest Service to hold a full-court rehearing. In...

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Treating Water and Managing Hydration on the Appalachian Trail

Water is the most important resource thru-hikers must learn to manage on the Appalachian Trail. Water is typically easy to find—as hikers meander through the woods they’ll cross numerous fresh springs, streams, ponds, rivers, and lakes from which they can draw water. It is not uncommon for hikers to pass multiple water sources in a single day. Shelters and popular...

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National Park Service Abandons Defense of Latest Pipeline Permit

The National Park Service has voluntarily abandoned its defense of the agency’s latest permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to cross the Blue Ridge Parkway. NPS issued the revised permit after the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, in August 2018, vacated its original authorization for the pipeline. On January 16, 2019 the Park Service asked the Fourth Circuit to remand...

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Age is Just a Number

The saying, “Age is just a number,” is more of a motto for one 75-year-old Canton, GA resident, who proved that adage, completing the 14-state, 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail last month. Richard Smith, known to those on the trail and many in Canton as “Old Scout,” completed the momentous hike in what is known as the “AT Flip-Flop.” Instead of hiking from Georgia’s Springer...

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Quoting ‘The Lorax,’ court tosses permit for pipeline to cross Appalachian Trail

  A permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to cross two national forests, including parts of the Appalachian Trail, was thrown out Thursday by a federal appeals court that harshly criticized regulators for approving the proposal. A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond blasted the U.S. Forest Service for granting a special-use...

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Karel Sabbe Smashes Appalachian Trail Record By 4 Days

The Appalachian Trail (AT) speed record now stands at 41 days, 7 hours, 39 minutes. Karel Sabbe crossed the trailhead at Mt. Katahdin on August 28, 2018, completing the 2,189-mile AT faster than anyone before him. The previous record of 45 days, 12 hours, 15 minutes, set by Joe “Stringbean” McConaughy in 2017, still stands as the self-supported AT record. And this isn’t...

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Appalachian Trail hikers asked to not climb Katahdin on Labor Day weekend

Appalachian Trail hikers planning to end their long trek atop Katahdin on Labor Day weekend 2018 are being asked to change their plans by summiting early or delaying their hike until Tuesday. This request is being made by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in partnership with Baxter State Park so AT hikers don’t disturb a longstanding annual ceremony conducted by the...

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Federal appeals court delivers blow to Mountain Valley Pipeline

In what environmentalists called a major victory, a federal appeals court struck down two key decisions allowing a natural gas pipeline to slice through the Jefferson National Forest. The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided with the Sierra Club and other conservation groups that challenged approvals by the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management for a...

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Appalachian National Scenic Trail Reroute through the Wallkill National Wildlife Refuge

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Serviceis pleased to announce the release of the Environmental Assessment for the Appalachian National Scenic Trail Reroute through the Wallkill National Wildlife Refuge. The Service plans to move a portion of the Trail from where it crosses the Wallkill River via Oil City Road in Orange County, New York, and relocate the Trail within the...

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Overlooked No More: Emma Gatewood, First Woman to Conquer the Appalachian Trail Alone

What the public knew about Emma Gatewood was already remarkable. She was the first woman to hike the entire Appalachian Trail by herself in one season. She was 67 years old, a mother of 11, a grandmother and even a great-grandmother when she accomplished the feat in 1955. And she personified the concept of low-tech, ultralight hiking, spurning a tent and sleeping bag,...

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8 Things to Know Before You Hike the Appalachian Trail

Stretching more than 2,190 miles across 14 different states, the Appalachian Trail may be the best long-distance hiking route in the entire world. Each year, 3 million people trek at least a portion of the trail, with just a fraction of those walking its entire length. Those “thru-hikers” learn a lot during early days of their journey, and most will tell you...

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Forest Service apologizes for damage to Appalachian Trail during patrols of pipeline protests

The U.S. Forest Service apologized for damaging the Appalachian Trail with all-terrain vehicles during its patrols of a pipeline protest. In a news release, the agency admitted that its law enforcement officers used the ATVs from April 11 to April 30 on a short stretch of the scenic footpath that follows the ridgeline of Peters Mountain in the Jefferson National Forest...

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What does it take to hike the entire Appalachian Trail?

Itching for adventure and seeking a break from their D.C. jobs, Elise Mann and Will Stowe figured it was time to go for a walk. In 2015, that’s exactly what the couple did, hiking roughly 2,190 miles from Georgia to Maine through woods and mountains, snow and rain on the Appalachian Trail. It took 146 days, four pairs of hiking boots each and more nonperishable food than...

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Anti-gay bias lead to deadly shooting on Appalachian Trail in 1988

Maybe they should have looked more closely at the name of the place where they parked… Dead Woman Hollow Road. But bad omens were not on their minds. All they knew on that warm spring afternoon, May 12, 1988, was that they were young, in love, and eager to be alone in the wilderness, hiking the Appalachian Trail. They were also both women, a fact that would later...

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