AT for newbies

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Oh, the information out there for those of us beginning from scratch is overwhelming! If you’re like me, once I get interested in something, I research, read, and take comprehensive, organized notes as I learn new information.  There may not be many of you who are quite that Type-A about it, so allow me to share my research notes with you.

The AT basics link below will pull up a 29-page Word document with topics ranging from the basics about gear to the locations of the best trail beer and everything in between. It is organized with bold headings and is all research I gathered during the 8 months leading up to my hike. It is not necessarily how I did things personally, but ideas I found helpful along the way as I was figuring out this whole hiking thing.  I left the notes as I had collected them so you can read ideas other than mine.  This research was all gathered from online sources as well as some helpful forum responses.

AT basics

The links below are downloadable copies of my supply list. The first link was my original list I used as I was setting out on my thru-hike.  The second shows how I changed my list throughout my hike and what I ended up having in my final pack. Hint: Downloading the second link is your best bet since I used strike-throughs to portray what I realized was personally unneeded.  You can still see the original items as well.

Clarity‘s supply list beginning of hike

Clarity‘s supply list by the end of hike

Articles for Newbies

The Ups and Downs of the Appalachian Approach Trail – Information here will help you decide whether to walk the approach trail or start your thru-hike at the base of Springer Mountain.

10 Items to Include in Every Day Pack  Don’t take a day hike without these items in your pack!

Stamp of Approval on Maildrops Download the free pdf file onto your phone and always know where your next maildrop options are.  Mile markers, addresses, links, etc are included.

Major Resupply Points Along the Appalachian Trail – Where can you pick up your supplies along the way? This article includes northbound mile markers, links, phone numbers, etc. Downloadable pdf version available  onto Share if you find it helpful!

Most Important Question: Where’s the Beer? – Comprehensive list of beer to be found on the A.T.

Regret Nothing About your A.T. Thru-hike – Read the top 8 regrets of those who have completed a thru-hike

Start your Thru-Hike Out Right with Pre-hike Training – This article explores some ideas for mental and physical preparation prior to beginning your hike. Start ensuring your success now!

Top 10 Mishaps new thru-hikers make as they set off on their journey – Be one of the 26% who finish the A.T. Set yourself up for success by avoiding the following mistakes!

Safety on the Appalachian Trail – As a solo female hiker, this article may help you bring peace of mind to worried family members.

Ever heard of a flip-flop hike? Find out why flip-flop thru-hikers have a 57% chance of success which greatly outnumbers a NOBO or SOBO attempt.

Want to see what the A.T. is Really Like?  This is a page with links to my narrated video clips from my thru-hike. Includes video of terrain, vistas, hiker life, following a bear and encounters with other wildlife and everything in between.

BeerPoints of Interest Southern A.T. – This link is part one of an article detailing points of interest you don’t want to miss while hiking all or part of the A.T. Included are the best vistas, fun trail towns, hostels, special shelters, and most importantly, where you can find good beer to quench your hiker thirst. 😉 Part 1 focuses on the trail from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. Enjoy!

BeerPoints of Interest northern A.T. – This link is part two of an article detailing points of interest you don’t want to miss while hiking all or part of the A.T. Included are the best vistas, fun trail towns, hostels, special shelters, and most importantly, where you can find good beer to quench your hiker thirst. 😉 Part 2 focuses on the trail from Maryland through Maine. Enjoy!

question markClick here for FAQ About a Thru-Hike – Comment below the blog if you have other questions you’d like answered.

arrows2Why should you consider a flip-flop thru-hike? Well, you want to finish the trail, right? Enjoy the best weather? Have the fewest bug nuisances? Click here to read more.

Sawyer picShould you treat your water?  Click here to learn how most thru-hikers do it!

240What do thru-hikers eat?  Click here for Clarity’s menu.

hygieneHow do hikers keep clean? Click here for good hygiene tips.

leave_no_trace_126687What harm could one piece of litter do? Click here for Leave No Trace explained

Click here to email Clarity! 🙂 I’m happy to help you have a successful, beautiful experience!

7 thoughts on “AT for newbies

    1. Hey Robin! Check out my article titled FAQ about Thru-hiking for a link, but I used a power bank that holds 3-4 charges. It was a bit heavy but it replaced the weight of paperback books and my mp3 player because it freed up more phone juice to use it for those things.


  1. Thanks for all the info. Looking at your end gear list is quite the eye opener and is helping me to decide what not to take. Section hiking Harper’s Ferry to Duncannon with my wife. Your a treasure!


  2. Found your web site by mistake, glad I did. Big question, I know its a huge undertaking, but could you update your section on “resupply points along the A.T.” to coordinate with the most up to date AWOL 2018 Northbound Guide? Many changes have taken place. Thank you.


  3. I would love a blog post about where to wash your clothes & shower on a NoBo thru hike. I know these services are usually included at hotels & hostels if you stay there, but what about those of us that prefer to spend almost all our time on the trail? I’m not a stay in person, for me I like to run into town to resupply & stay on the trail unless an emergency occurs. Any tips on where/how to find this info in each town?

    Love your site & FB page. So much valuable info. Thank you!


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