Sunday, August 14, 2005

Breakoff After 4 Days

Everything was different then I thought.

My achilles tendon issue came up again. After 3 and a half day I had to abort my hike. I don't know what was the reason again, but it seems like my backpack was to heavy again. Next time I try not to have 44 lbs but under 35. I already have a plan how I can succeed ...

I didn't also expect the weather to be that rainy and the trail to be that lonely but either didn't cause a big problem. A wet sleeping bag could be dried in a few hours ;-)
Like everytime I had too much food for the first days. A little too much clothes (maybe even for the wrong application), big backpack, leaky pack bag and some useless gear added more weight than neccessary.

Maybe I just have to learn it on the hard way ;-) But now I'm sure, I know what was wrong and what I have to improve.

I'm definitly coming back on this trail! Now I know what I have to expect, also I know the right time to meet many people.

More impressions and pictures are coming the next days!



Saturday, August 06, 2005


In a few moments I'm going to departure towards Amicola Falls State Park in Georgia. There I'll spend the night and then start my hike tomorrow morning.

My backpack has a baseweight about 14 kilograms. With food for 5 days it's close to 20. :-0

During my trip I'm trying to post some short notes here.

Wish me luck,


Thursday, August 04, 2005

Nice Quote

Sometimes it falls upon a generation to be great.
You can be that great generation.

Nelson Mandela

Today is the last day of my internship here in South Carolina.
Almost everything is ready. I got my water filter, the hydration system and the 1st-Aid Kit yesterday.
Only my tent is missing. But I got a tracking number yesterday night and it will be deliverd on Friday. So I hopefully have it at the right time.
I put all my food together and am going to ship it tomorrow. Everything should work out fine.
I worked out a new schedule for my hike. Probably post it here tonight!

Have a nice day,


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Trip Schedule

This is now my first sketch for the hike!

Week 1:

Day 1 (14.9 mi): Springer Mountain ---> Gooch Mountain Shelter
Day 2 (16.7 mi): Gooch Mountain Shelter ---> Bull Gap Tentsite
Day 3 (16.7 mi): Bull Gap Tentsite ---> Blue Mountain Shelter
Day 4 (14.8 mi): Blue Mountain Shelter ---> Deep Gap Shelter
Day 5 (15.1 mi): Deep Gap Shelter ---> Muskrat Creek Shelter
Day 6 (18.4 mi): Muskrat Creek Shelter ---> Bear Pen Trail
Day 7 Break

Week 2:

Day 8 (18.1 mi): Bear Pen Trail ---> Bartram Trail
Day 9 (18.4 mi): Bartram Trail ---> A. Rufus Morgan Shelter
Day 10 (16.8 mi): A. Rufus Morgan Shelter ---> Brown Fork Gap Shelter
Day 11 (18.6 mi): Brown Fork Gap Shelter ---> Birch Spring Tentsite
Day 12 (17.1 mi): Birch Spring Tentsite ---> Derrick Knob Shelter
Day 13 (9.7 mi): Birch Spring Tentsite ---> mi 195.3 Clingmans Dome
Day 14 Break
Day 15 Break
Day 8-13 need to be planed better to get a more equal mileage.

Week 3:

Day 16 (11.3 mi): 195.3 ---> Icewater Spring Shelter
Day 17 (12.8 mi): Icewater Spring Shelter ---> Tri-Corner Knob Shelter
Day 18 (14.8 mi): Tri-Corner Knob Shelter ---> Davenport Gap Shelter
Day 19 (10 mi): Davenport Gap Shelter ---> Croundhog Creek Shelter
Day 20 (13 mi): Croundhog Creek Shelter ---> Walnut Mountain Shelter
Day 21 (13 mi): Walnut Mountain Shelter ---> Hot Springs NC
If I like I'm going to extend the last week a bit, because the mileage is not very high.

This is my plan. I have to see, how good it work out with supply and rest days. Maybe I'm going to change a littlebit and look for a more equal distance every day.

So far,


Wednesday, July 27, 2005

It's Coming Closer

Yesterday I noticed, that I have to less food. I got about 500 gr. with 2000 kcal per day. That is way to less. So I have to come up with a plan to get more Calories.
Perfect would be around 3000-3500. Probably going shopping tonight and see what I can get.

My 1st-aid pack, the hydration system and the water filter is also ordered and should be here mid-next week. Then I have my gear complete.

When everything is working out I get also some brandnew badges from the "Forum"! Then I'm going to make some advertising while hiking. :-)

This was a short update, take care,


Sunday, July 24, 2005

Food For 21 Days

This is all the food for the AT Hike.

Don't think I went crazy here! I'm not going to carry all that stuff on my back. I'll send at least two parcels to stations on the trail, so I can hike with a quite light pack. There is a little more food then for 21 days but my former experience tells my, that I need much more food after 10 days of a trip then at the beginning.

The backrow of the picture is mostly breakfast stuff. Dry milk, cream wheat, oatmeal and muesli.
As a lunch snack there are the "asia noodles" and the granola and oatmeal bars.
The white bags in the middle are dinner with noodles and rice.
Left are mashed potatos with gravy and at the right are spaghetti with tomato sauce.

So I have a bit of variety, because I'm not going to eat 3 weeks the same stuff.

All in all I paid 75 $, quite a good price for 3 weeks of food.

Next week I'm going to pack the supplies in daily rations and sent two or three parcels to hostels. I hope everything is working out fine!

Good night,


Gear List

This is my preliminary gear list:

Number Gear Manufacturer Name Weight


1 Backpack Lowe Alpine Alpamayo 70+20
1 Rain Bag Bach
1 Tent Salewa Island II
1 Insulation Pad TAR
1 Sleeping Bag Haglöfs Goga 12 X
1 Blanket Lufthansa ;-)
1 Multi-Tool Leatherman Wave
1 Pocket Knife
1 1st Aid Kit Light & Dry LD2
1 Lighter
1 Matches


1 Stove MSR Dragonfly
1 Fuel Bottle MSR Fuel Bottle 1l
1 Pot Set MSR Alpine
1 Cup
1 Silverware MEC
1 Tea Towel
1 Sponge
2 Soap MSR
1 Oil
1 Spices
1 Salt
1 Travel Diary Moleskin Squared Notebook L
1 Guide Dan Bruce Thru-Hikers Handbook


1 Water Bag MSR Dromedar 4l
1 Hydration Platypus Big Zip II 2l
1 Water Treatment MSR Mini Works EX


1 Tooth Brush
1 Toothpaste
1 Towel MSR Packtowel
1 Shaver Gilette Mach 3 Blue
1 Shaving Foam


1 Cellphone Sony Ericcson T68i
1 Cell Charger Sony Ericcson CST-13
1 Camera Kodak Easy Share DX7630
1 Battery Charger Kodak K5000
1 Converter Plug Travelwise


1 Rainwear MEC
1 Trousers Tchibo
1 Trousers MEC
1 T-Shirt Four Season
1 T-Shirt Jack Wolfskin
1 T-Shirt Star Fit Dry-Star
4 Stockings Tchibo Trekking Stockings
4 Slip Four Season
1 Fleece Jacket MEC 200 Fleece
1 Underwear Tchibo
1 Hiking Boots Meindl Borneo
1 Sandals Source

There are some items which will probably fall out of the list due to weight.

Please help me in optimizing my gear list. I know, some of the items are not perfect for this trip but I already have them and I don't want to by a lot of new things.

Take care,


Wednesday, July 20, 2005

The Start Is In Sight

First of all a big sorry for not writing so long. I was a little busy the last weeks and had many things to do. I was a little bit surprised when I looked on my calendar and noticed that there are only a little more then 2 weeks left until I plan to start my hike. I was so busy the last weeks that I didn't really pay attention.

My plans are to walk towards north and make it to Hot Springs, NC in about 20 days. That is 270.5 miles from Springer Mountain in Georgia. This shouldn't be a problem if everything is working out fine. If I notice during my trip that I'm walking to slow or to fast I can reduce or extend the distance very easily.

I plan to refill my supplies three to four times during my hike so I don't have to carry too much weight with me. There are some nice places on the way where you can take a shower, eat some real food and get supplies.

The next days I'm going to order a hydration set, a water treatment system and a 1st aid kit. I'm not 100% sure yet what I want to have but I have to make a decision soon.

I haven't decided yet what kind of food I'm going to take with me. Probably I'm just taking standard stuff. But if my backpack is going to get to heavy I have to change to freeze-dried expedition food. But this is going to be pretty expensive.

Read more here soon,


Monday, June 20, 2005

The First Contact

At the weekend I was there: The Appalachian Trail!

We went hiking in the "Smoky Mountain National Park". From our campsite we climbed up the hills for about one hour and finally sighted the trail in front of us. It runs exactly on the North Carolina/Tennessee border. We walked a few yards on the trail but were forced to return due to severe weather coming up over distant ridges.

I really enjoyed this short hike and I'm looking forward to August when I'm finally able to start my "adventure"! The impressions I received on this two-days trip (way to short) were really something I have missed over the last months. I'm pretty sure I'm going to enjoy this tour very much!

As to gear I finally made a decision concerning the GPS Receiver. My choice is the "Magellan Meridian Platinum". I should get it end of the week by mail and hope it meets my expectations.

The "Thru Hiker Handbook" is also ordered and should be at my place even sooner. This book is absolutely essential for all further planning concerning my trip. As soon as I receive it, I’ll be able to make precise plans of this trip.

So far,


Friday, June 17, 2005

Gear - An Endless Story

Today I ordered the "Thru-Hiker Handbook". You have to send them a check and they'll (hopefully) send you a book. Normally it should only last up to three days. I expect to get it by next midweek. Then I can finally begin to plan my hike in detail.

About my other gear I didn't come to a decision yet:

  • For the water treatment system I found two products I like very much. But both have their advantages and disadvantages. So it's hard to me to decide, because it's a lot of money.
  • For the GPS I found finally the "Magellan Meridian Platinum" which fulfills all my requirements. I found it "quite" cheap at, but in this price range "cheap" is ironically.
  • The drinking system is not that big deal. I'll buy one from "Platypus" with two or three liter capacity.
  • I'm not sure yet, if I need the rain trousers at all. Perhaps I can find an answer in the guidebook. If I need them, I likely need gaiters, too.
  • At "MEC" I found some nice 1st aid packets, I have to ask some people for assistance, which one is better.

This weekend I'm going to visit the "Great Smoky National Park" with some friends. There I anyway take a look at the AT, to see, what is going to challenge me in two month. Hopefully I can get there some information concerning the hike.

Have a great weekend,


Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Thoughts about my trip

Slowly my plans for the hike take shape. But there is very much I have to do before I can definitly start in August.
I have to order the "Thru-Hiker Handbook" from Wingfoot (people say it's the best what is on the market) plan my route and buy much equipment.
For my luck the outdoor gear here is very cheap, so I don't have to invest as much money as at home, but it's still a huge list what I need.
  • 1-man tent (optional)
  • GPS
  • water treatment system
  • trinking system
  • rain trousers
  • 1st aid stuff
  • lots of food!

I already got a ride to the starting point, the arrangements for the return are almost done. So this shouldn't cause any problems.

Soon I have to buy some breakfast food at WalMart or FoodLion and make a big test, what could be considerd to supply me with power every morning during the trip due to the lack of Muesli. But there is a big selection and I hope to discover the right thing.

For the rest of the food I have to look, what I can get and what is light enough to be carried all the time on my back.

For drinking I found some instant ice tea, which tastes good and is quite cheap. This should be a good alternativ to the German fizzy tablets.

This time I try to make a kind of lightweight backpacking and not to carry to much needless stuff around with me. This is more or less just because I fear my Achilles Tendon could cause some problems again and I want to do all to avoid this. Nothing is as bad as abort a tour due to physical problems.

I try to get this list done step by step. If there is something new, I let you know!

Take care,


Monday, June 13, 2005

Appalachian Trail

Jasper on the Appalachian Trail!

I want to hike there 20 days in August. This blog will inform you about my plans, my trip and my experiences.

I'll tell you my basic plans here later!

Take care,