Planning a hiking trip might not seem all that complicated… I’m just walking in the woods all day, right? Sure… There’ll be a lot of walking. Six months, actually. But there’ll also be a lot of sleeping. Cooking. Eating. Camping. Laundering — well maybe not a lot, but some. Resupplying. Gear replacing. Town visiting…. You get the picture.
And I’ve found that as I’m planning and telling more and more people, I get a lot of questions — which I love! But there are some that continue to pop up over and over again. Which led me to think, why not try to answer some here? If you’ve asked me these in person (or might end up asking them in person again later) — don’t worry — I love telling people about my trip and I’m also a teacher, so I’m used to answering the same questions multiple times. 😉
Now, without further ado… Five of the most common questions I’ve gotten so far:
#5. How long is that going to take? Well, we’ve joked since the early planning days that as long as we’re done by Christmas, it doesn’t matter. 🙂 Most people take a few weeks shy of six months.
#4. So… you’re going to sleep outside and everything? You better believe it! Except for some “zero days” in town or really stormy days (where we’ll stay in a shelter), we’ll be sleeping in our little backpacking tents.
#3. So… what are you going to eat? A very important question, and one of the ones that I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about! I will be eating a combination of food picked up at convenience/grocery stores along the way and some mail drop food boxes. I tried my hand at dehydrating for the first time yesterday — more about that later!
#2. What made you want to do that? I’m ready. I’m ready for a change. For some adventure. For something new. The trail was the perfect place to start. You should read my first post for more to this answer. 🙂
#1. Hands down, number one question, almost everyone asks me — What are you doing for protection? *either accompanied by raised eyebrows or a quiet concerned tone* Other variations include — Are you packing heat? Bringing a gun? Carrying bear spray? My *insert relative here* has a *insert type of small gun here*…
Nope, no guns. Probably no bear spray. At least, that’s the short answer. I feel perfectly safe with just my friend Corinne and myself. Lots of women have hiked the AT solo, and have walked away regarding the trip as one of the best things they’ve ever done. Yes, there are stories of things going wrong, but they are few and far between. Maybe I should be worried — but I’m not. I’ve got peace about this one.
So, there you have it.
Some questions and some answers.
There’s still have lots of both, but I’m just taking them as they come. One day at a time. 🙂
p.s. If you like the painting above — you can find it here.