Monthly Archives: November 2013

Field Notes from the Appalachian Trail

20131129-174015.jpgWe reached the summit of Springer Mountain in Georgia, the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail, on Thanksgiving Day – Thursday, November 28th. We’ve finally completed a very long walk – a journey of 2,200 miles and lasting nearly 5 months – a journey which at it’s inception was seemingly endless. Now, having traversed so much terrain, we are left to consider where this journey has left us… more on the metaphysics soon, for now here are some physical realities we faced;

Start Date: Independence Day, 4th of July, 2013 at Mount Katahdin, Baxter State Park, Maine
End Date: Thanksgiving Day, 28th of November, 2013 at Springer Mountain, Amicalola Falls State Park, Georgia
States Traversed: 14
Total Days: 148
Days Hiked: 134
Zero Days: 14
Miles of the AT: 2,186
Average Miles per Day: 16.3
…Biggest Day: 44 miles (as part of the 4 State Challenge)
…Miles Blue Blazed (hiking non-AT trails or roads): 60
…Miles Yellow Blazed (driving instead of hiking): 30
…Miles Slack Packed (hiking w/out our packs): 30
Nights spent sleeping at a drive in movie theater: 1
…in the yard of a neighborhood bar: 2
…at the home of a friend or family member or trail angel: 16
…in a hostel or hotel: 24
…camping or in a trail shelter: 105
Base weight of our packs (without food/water):
…Sara: 13lb
…NKO: 10.4lb
…average “full” load with 6 days food and 1 liter water: 25lb
…most ever carried (by NKO) including a 30 rack, 2 bags of ice, 2 pints of whiskey and lb of birthday Oreos for our friend “Shakes”: 50lb
Coldest night sleeping outside: zero degrees
Bears seen: 18
Poisonous snakes seen or heard on trail: 2
Calories burned daily (each): 4,000-7,000
Calories consumed daily (each): never enough
Pairs of shoes worn through:
…Sara: 4
…NKO: 3
Total Elevation Gain/Loss: 515,000 feet*
Steps taken (common estimation): 5 million

Cheers friends. We are thankful for you all.

Trail Recipes: Trail Cappuccino

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This one is easy – add 2 packets Nescafé instant coffee and one packet Folgers instant (the Nescafé is tasty, but the Folgers is cheap & strong) to 300 ml cold water. Shake vigorously. Now you can tell off that mouthy barista who said you can’t have a iced cappuccino… And, if it’s 20 degrees and you wait 15 minutes, you’ll have a coffee slushie. Cheers!