How Long Does It Take To Hike The Appalachian Trail (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Five to Seven Months

People who love adventures and sports know the thrill of hiking. Hiking is one of the many ways people choose to unwind from their daily routine and the monotony of life.

Hiking refers to taking a vigorous walk on remote terrain. A person should be fit and healthy to undertake the long walk. It sounds tiring, but it’s quite an experience. People love hiking because it lets them be closer to nature while enjoying the serene beauty.

If you are looking forward to relaxing your mind by going hiking, there are many trails that you can hike. One such option is the most renowned Appalachian Trail.

How Long Does It Take To Hike The Appalachian Trail?

If you are a hiker, sometimes you want to pack your bags and head out for an adventure. Every hiker needs to hike the Appalachian once in their lifetime. Yes, the Appalachian Trail or A.T is truly an adventure that hikers around the world crave.

The Appalachian Trail is also known as the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. It is one of the most hiked trails in the world. Situated in the United States, it extends about 2184 miles long. It extends from Springer Mountains to Mount Katahdin.

There are various sections of the Appalachian Trail that hikers have to undertake. These short trails make up the entire Appalachian Trails. And it takes different numbers to days to complete each short Trail. Some take a month, and some might take even two. And in total, it takes about 5 to 7 months to hike the complete Appalachian Trail.

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The Appalachian Trail is so long that thousands of hikers come to hike the complete trail. But only about one-fourth of the total hikers can complete the Appalachian Trail. It is not easy to go on for months completing the hike on the Appalachian Trail. Because of the weather conditions and also some other factors.

The time it takes to hike the complete Appalachian Trail also depends on experience. If you are an experienced hiker, then it might take you comparatively lesser time.

Type of HikerTime Taken To Complete
Fresher To Hiking Seven Months or more
ExperiencedFive to Seven Months

Why Does It Take So Long To Hike The Appalachian Trail? 

Being one of the longest Hike Trails across the world, it takes a long time to hike the complete trails. Yes, the lengthy Appalachian Trail is a reason why it takes so much time to complete. However, there are other factors too that come into consideration.

It might look easy, but when you move further, you will realize how tough it becomes. The weather changes and also many changes happen with your body. And towards the end, it is even more tricky to have that strength to complete the hike.

Below are some reasons why it takes months to complete the hiking on Appalachian Trail:

  • The weather conditions become the primary reason it takes a long time to hike on the world-famous Appalachian mountain. It snows almost all the time out there. And, if it starts to rain, then it becomes the cause of hypothermia. To avoid these situations, hikers or trekkers have to move very cautiously.
  • And in summer, you can expect a lot of heat that can lead to problems like sunburn or Heat cramps, or stroke. Hence to move through all this with good health, you cannot just go on and on. You need to be careful and plan your hiking accordingly. Taking proper breaks and avoiding the other unforeseen risks leads to the hike taking a lot of time.
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Conclusion

The Appalachian Trail is both beautiful and dangerous. And living under different conditions over months on a stretch can bring about many changes in you. These changes can be both physical and mental.

Hence always travel with the group and take things one at a time to avoid all sorts of problems. Also, one needs to stay prepped with any circumstance that can come on the way.

Yes, it takes an enormous amount of time, but the experience you get is beyond imagination. And completing the entire trail hike is in itself a significant accomplishment.

References

  1. https://digitalcommons.odu.edu/hms_fac_pubs/89/
  2. https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/17369