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Flip Flop thru hike of AT 2022 - gear? safety?

A bucket list item I have is a thru hike of the AT.  Because of wedding of youngest child in 2022, I would not be able to begin this adventure until mid May.  All that I have read about a flip flop thru hike indicates NOBO is the way to go (plan is to begin at Harpers Ferry to Maine, then Harpers Ferry to North Georgia).  I am looking for comments from the community about whether this is a feasible plan? I am not a very experienced backpacking female, but willing to just get out there and try as I begin this next chapter.  I am gathering gear and would be open to any gear knowledge you are willing to share.  Also, whenever I mention this bucket list to family members they always question the safety of a woman on the AT.  Any comments on that would be welcome.

3 Replies

It's doable. It's about a 90 day hike average. I've heard of people doing it quicker than that.  If you start at beginning of May, you should be in Maine by end of July/beginning of August, giving you plenty of time to get back to Harper's Ferry and hike to Springer in GA before the cold really gets unbearable if you're not prepped for it.

Also, a woman hiking alone is not a rare occurrence. You are safer on the AT alone than walking the streets of a large city at night.

Happy hiking!

I have not thru-hiked.  And, probably only hiked about some 60 or 70 miles in one long hike.  There are a lot of folks that do (at least start) the AT every year.  One thing you could do is look over some YouTube channels.  One channel is "Homemade Wanderlust" (her trail name is Dixie).  she has actually done the triple crown At, PCT and CDT.  You could check out her channel and might be able to ask her some questions.  Another channel is "Kelly hays Hikes".  She has actually VLOG each day (or at least awfully close) of her AT.  Another person that you could Google search for is Julie Sheehan (trail name Rocket).  These are just a few AT Thru-hikers that you could check out.  The things that I have seen documented about the AT are that it takes about 4-6 months to complete.  And while doing the Thru-hike, it could cost about $1000 per month.

So, check out those channels and folks.



Sorry, to double up my reply.  I forgot to mention that beside the Flip-Flop.  You could also look at SoBOoMaine to Georgia.    Here is a bit about Sobo myths (10 Myths for SOBO Thru-Hikers - The Trek).

And, you might want to look at getting an app like FarOut (formerly Guthook).