On this page, I answer some of the questions that I got a lot, both on the trail and from friends at home. It's not comprehensive, so leave a comment at the bottom of the page if you're curious about something I didn't address here. I'll answer your question on this page.

How long is the trail?

It's not an exact measurement, but most estimates have it around 2180 miles. It starts at Springer Mountain, Georgia and ends on Mount Katahdin, Maine.

When did you start?

I started on June 13th 2013, which gave me plenty of time after my friend's wedding in early June. 

Which direction are you going to hike?

Departing as late as I was, I had almost no choice but to walk south from Maine. If I were to start walking north, I would be facing a deadline of October 15th (or earlier), when access to Katahdin closes for the winter. Most people walk northbound, finishing on Katahdin. I'm wasn't a bad thing though, because I was able to get the most rugged part of the trail out of the way in the beginning, and I was walking towards my home in South Carolina.

How long did this take you?

116 days. June 13 to October 6th. Let it be known that I would have made the cutoff for Katahdin if I had hiked northbound!

How did you carry all that food?

There are tons of places where the A.T. crosses roads and passes through towns. This means I only had to carry about 4 days of food at a time. The exception are a few more remote places like the 100 mile wilderness in Maine, which is (for the most part) what the name implies. Then I carried 9 or 10 days worth of food to be safe.

Were you afraid of murderers in the woods?

No. The crime rate on the trail is much lower than in the rest of America, and there's a great amount of comradery between hikers. People tend to look out for one another, so I was less afraid than I would have been spending a typical day in a town.

How did you update this dang journal, ya dingus?

In general, I kept my phone in airplane mode to save battery, composing my posts while offline. When I reached an area that looked like it had service, I'd turn the network back on to upload my post. In theory, I wanted to update every day. In reality, I uploaded in batches using local libraries' wifi.


  1. I think this is such a kewl trip, are you carrying any weapons for personal safety?

  2. Aaron,
    Lots of love and prayers from Grandma Louise. Hope you get this message. I will try to keep up with your adventure. Post a few photos of you if you can. Don't feed the bears! =:)
    Gma Louise

  3. Great story so far Aaron. Wish I would could do a portion of the trail. Godspeed Aaron


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