If you do surprise one of these poisonous snakes, … If you naturally gravitate toward these people because it feels safer, then by all means do so. Some of these are the opposite of what one might think, but it makes sense. The most vicious animals you are likely to encounter will be domestic dogs brought to the trail by other hikers, or the domestic dogs of folks who live close to the trail. According to … A few things about bears on the Appalachian Trail: There are only black bears on the East coast. The chances are good that you are going to stumble across a black bear or two while on the Appalachian Trail. I was wondering if there was any way to reassure them that this is completely safe and that if we run into anyone on the trail they’ll probably be like the hikers Cheryl Strayed came across on the PCT. The Appalachian Trail is home to thousands of species of plants and animals, including 2,000 rare, threatened, endangered, and sensitive plant and animal species. Here are 11 facts you might not know about America’s greatest trail. While these species of bear are generally timid around humans and tend to avoid confrontation, there are some things you should be aware of for your own safety. It can be an incredibly rewarding experience, completing a thru-hike, knowing that you have done it all by yourself, under your own steam. Our CFC number: 12230. You may not end up with much of a say in the matter. Today some of the best and most-extensive broad-leaved deciduous forests in the world still flourish in the Appalachians and bordering areas, notably in southern Appalachia. The site includes articles, news and updates and hiking forums. It takes particular joy in frightening hikers on a remote trail. Bestselling author Jen Beck Seymour thru-hiked the trail in 2017, and she … I am 56 years old and dream of hiking a section of the AT in each state a week a year. To be out on the trail without navigational equipment or expertise, and to be inadequately prepared for rapid changes in weather are the biggest dangers you will face (along with ticks, although preparation takes care of them as well!). I have learned not to camp too close to babbling brooks because my ears will play tricks on me. 7 Appalachian Trail Facts You Probably Don’t Know (but should) —————————— 1) How Does One Poop on The Appalachian Trail? I may just print a bunch of copies of this post out and hand them to people when they ask Thanks for this! Many backpacks have a safety whistle built in on the clip of the sternum strap. After all, if you go downtown, there are lethal hazards foremost of which is the car. There was already a part of me that was scared to do what I was about to do, and loved ones trying to chip away at my confidence did nothing to help the situation. However, the incidence of such crimes is quite low relative to the millions of people that hike the trail each year. dangerous animals of the white mountains; when are the insects bad on the appalachian trail; Previous Tenkara Rod Company Sawtooth Rod and Package Review. It’s always helpful to keep a few Benadryl on hand in case you have an allergic reaction to a spider bite or anything else. Required fields are marked *. My friend and I have been planning a four day trip on the AT from Newfound gap to Davenport gap and we’re super psyched! I feel silly for asking but have heard of people doing this and I will be hiking alone. There are reports about bears and snakes. 4 out of 5 crimes against women are by someone you know. With snakes and spiders, that‘s another story. Camping alone becomes less scary after the first few times. Hikers generally have certain wild animals they watch out for while hiking. I would be scared more of a female stranger than a male since my “danger stranger” instincts would be in full mode around a guy. There are many considerations, such as climate, terrain and wildlife. If you see a bear or snake, back off and let it be. As a travel writer and photographer, Gordon spent the better part of 2018 visiting 13 different countries as far apart as Chile, Morocco and Vietnam. I sincerely appreciate you sharing it. Today's trail hiker can walk up to the summit of Mount Greylock and also appreciate Mount Greylock from the Cobbles, a quartzite outcrop on the trail. This can be in bear canisters or in the storage lockers provided – or by hanging a bag properly in a tree. Whether you are just going for a quick two-hour jaunt or are hiking the Appalachian Trail, there is always plenty to see. Not you. The nonpoisonous snakes that inhabit the Appalachian Trail include garter snakes, black snakes, corn snakes andwater snakes. The trail takes in the 6,289-foot summit of Mount Washington, heading up and down for about 100 miles of tricky, steep and rocky terrain. I think women especially have concerns about hiking solo, particularly in regards to running into creepy men while we’re hiking all alone. Anytime I plan any sort of hiking adventure, international travels, or road trip it seems like there’s always a handful of people who want to question my sanity and lack of male protection. There are no grizzly bears on the Appalachian Trail. Unlike bears, they are difficult to identify, and you … Religious pilgrimages have existed much longer but they involve walking long distances for a spiritual purpose associated with specific religions. But the things you should protect yourself against fall into a different Venn circle than that of mom’s concerns. The iconic end of the trail for Northbounders and the beginning for Southbounders. Animals. I tend to travel much emptier spaces than the AT and may not see people for days at a time if my luck holds out. Generally speaking, there is some real danger of animals that can attack you along the trail. The thing about tiny bugs and organisms is that it’s really difficult to stop them from their parasitic ways. The 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail is a favorite of hikers, running from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mount Katahdin in Main. We tackled Katahdin back then, and now get to adventure on the rest of our lives together. However, these animals have no interest in being around you. Give animals space. Acts of kindness and "trail magic" are so common on the A.T. that it's easy to forget you could encounter someone who does not have your best interest at heart or who may even seek to harm you. And as far as your water filtering equipment goes, I didn’t treat my water ever and I was fine. A willingness to trudge, in Bryson's case, the full length of the Appalachian Trail, some 2,160 miles, from Springer Mountain, in Georgia, to Mount Katahdin, in Maine. 20 celebrities who have adopted rescue animals. Business ... “I knew that it was getting dangerous for people on the trail, and it was getting dangerous for him,” Norman said in a telephone interview Sunday. If you meet someone that makes you feel uncomfortable on the trail, avoid engaging them if possible. Additionally, photos are not a priority when you spot an animal. In 1993, an A.T. thru-hiker contracted hantavirus as he hiked through Virginia. Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) One case of the rare but dangerous rodent-borne disease hantavirus pulmonary syndrome has been reported on the Trail. People will help you if you get hurt. “Are you bringing a gun?” “A gun?! Luckily, the AT is well marked for the entire way, so if you stick to the footpath there isn’t much of a risk. Don’t go really far off of the trail. You’re probably going to get bitten by bugs and maybe pick up a virus or two. Your email address will not be published. Shelters are posted along the route for overnight stays, though it isn't necessary to hike the entire trail to enjoy its beauty. One of the most tragic cases on the trail involved the case of Rebecca Wight and Claudia Brenner. If you do surprise one of these poisonous snakes, do not freeze. Both women and men will be subject to the exact same dangers out on the trail, and their ability to deal with such things is not determined by a hiker’s gender. Used in as a mind set reference only). That being said, it is not surprising that hikers take from 5 to 7 months to cross it. If you properly secure your food and use common sense while on the trail, your chances of confrontation and injury from wild animals are very low. Check in often. Your gut is your best guide. I started to think there were maybe monsters in the woods that people weren’t allowed to tell me about…you know, like in the horror films there’s always someone who tries to warn the kids off before they go to the cabin/camp/whatever. Acts of kindness and "trail magic" are so common on the A.T. that it's easy to forget you could encounter someone who does not have your best interest at heart or who may even seek to harm you. 8 Tips for Backpacking in the Sawtooth Mountains, Tips for Staying Fit While Long-Term Traveling. It is estimated that close to three million visitors are hiking the Appalachian Trail to some degree. There are lots of people on the popular trails in Nepal, or you could hire a guide or join a guided group…you would be providing money to the local economy and would meet interesting people. Unlike bears, they are difficult to identify, and you may step on one of them while walking. Despite the almost playful nature of these reports, the Snarly Yow has been known to be violent and attack people without provocation. COVID-19 Status & Maps Daily status of the COVID-19 pandemic and its relationship to the trails. Visit www.gordonalexander.org for more info! The customs man at the border was far more concerned about violence in my country (Ireland) than anything in his! The White Mountains fit the brief, and the weather can be notoriously difficult to predict here as well. Around 12,000 people have hiked the full length Since its completion in 1937, as estimated 12,000 people have hiked the whole trail. According to … I have walked the Camino twice and hope to tackle the AT next year – covid permitting! Ticks, Spiders, Waterborne Pathogens, Norovirus, and other small but harmful organisms. Or it might just curl up and stay where it is. Sometimes the completion of such an undertaking can be a life-changing experience, giving people the confidence to go about their lives in a more determined manner. Bring along a. Snakes are probably the least scared of you. You just have to get out there and see for yourself that it’s not scary. (Sorry I couldn’t find a link to any statistics.). If you read some of their stories, it just may inspire you to do something similar. I get horrified looks from so many people, and the big “Isn’t that dangerous?? They mainly dwell in forested areas where the trees and vegetation provide them shelter and food but they also can be found in marshes or swamps as well as farmlands. Also read: What To Do If You See A Coyote While on the trail. You can spray yourself with bug spray to keep ticks and mosquitos away, but covering your skin in chemicals and not being able to wash it off is probably bad for you too. If you’re a man try to be especially aware of if you might be unintentionally making any solo females uncomfortable. A black bear won’t attack you for your food. I agree, for every tragedy, there are thousands of happy, cheerful hiking stories of people who went out there, had a great time, and came back safe. It does not matter what it is. Chicas on the Appalachian Trail Women-specific Tips for Thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail and Conversations With Badass Women Hikers (Book) : Seymour, Jen Beck : "Hiking the Appalachian Trail is your dream adventure - but so far, you've done nothing but dream. The wilderness of the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail can pose many risks to its visitors. Snakes will normally only attack a human if they are provoked. Henry David Thoreau famously climbed it in the 1800's. You want to be able to hear. You can use this device to send pre-made text messages to family or friends letting them know you are ok or use the emergency button that sends a emergency signal for help and they use your gps coordinates to locate you and send help. I agree. This is an irresponsible and dangerous method for the A.T. Sleeping with one’s food habituates animals to shelters and tents and greatly increases the likelihood of a mutually negative encounter with wildlife. It is an old perception that it is not safe for women to be alone, but there are countless adventurous women who hit the trails everyday as solo travelers. The Appalachian trail winds through areas that have abundant wildlife. For hiking enthusiasts and nature lovers, the Appalachian Trail is something of a legend and an epic undertaking. Timber rattlesnakes are found from Georgia to Maine, but again, rarely spotted north of Massachusetts. During my hike, an elderly hiker fell and busted his kneecap in the 100 Mile Wilderness. That isn’t to say that the Appalachian Trail, and long-distance backpacking in general, are without real risks. This site also participates in other affiliate programs and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. There are reports about bears and snakes. Black bears will generally want to eat your food. Here are 11 facts you might not know about America’s greatest trail. You all have heard that before I’m sure! . Final thoughts on thru-hiking and safety…. The Appalachians are home to many different living things. This weekend we took it back to where it all began on day three of my thru hike. Like all the other animals you will encounter, these poisonous snakes will only be dangerous when surprised or cornered. Then to make things even harder, you will need to be aware of the different federal gun regulations relating to the different national parks. Can you leave your car around? I once almost stepped on a rattlesnake because I was listening to music and couldn’t hear it rattling. This website is where I share all our adventures along with tips and advice to help you get outdoors too! My biggest fear would be not making it to the next campsite, or losing my water filtering equipment. After all, every redneck murder movie takes place in the woods. A common fear is getting injured, not having cell service, and being alone without help. Great post! Don’t get me wrong, there’s definitely been times when I’ve been sexually harassed on the Appalachian Trail and that sucks. I like your comments about keeping a perspective on the risks involved. While her story is certainly a tragedy and I hope that her family finds solace one day, I would say that female solo hikers are not necessarily in very much danger while hiking. Getting hopelessly lost or falling ill, wild animals and dangerous weather are … Be aware of your surroundings in regions with high bear and snake populations. They think they can tell the difference -- somehow -- between average people, unusual but safe strangers and dangerous people on or off the Appalachian Trail. It takes particular joy in frightening hikers on a remote trail. However, my family is worried about our safety. They are actively aggressive due to people feeding them and now known for mass muggings and shelter burglaries… For more tips visit the links below referencing animals and leave no trace skills. The American black bear (Ursus americanus), among the largest animals along the Appalachian Trail, rarely confronts people. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is a 501c3 organization. This Complete Hiking the Appalachian Trail Blog has some of the best Appalachian Trail thru hike tips and information you will need to successfully complete your AT thru hike 2021. As long as you are competent and confident in your own abilities, there is no reason why a woman should not hike the Appalachian Trail alone. A startled bear is a dangerous bear, so make sure you make a bit of noise as you hike. A simple “have fun” would suffice. The wilderness of the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail can pose many risks to its visitors. Another common cause of snake bite is human unawareness. People all across the nation enjoy hiking and one of those trails being the Appalachian Trail. The nonpoisonous snakes that inhabit the Appalachian Trail include garter snakes, black snakes, corn snakes andwater snakes. At night on the trail we have heard coyotes hunting calves. Completing the Thru-hiking Triple Crown: AT, PCT & CDT. You’ll probably just meet lots of friendly people who want to chat and hear about your trip. The Appalachian Mountains are one of the oldest and most prominent mountain chains in ... causing the animals to throw off the riders. Your email address will not be published. With snakes and spiders, that‘s another story. There is a majestic, vast, rugged quality to them that make them seem like perfect places for mysteries to lurk hidden away from the eyes of civilization. Raccoons are found everywhere along the trail, and like red squirrels on the Appalachian Trail or marmots on the PCT, raccoons are bold nighttime raiders. You don’t have to worry about seeing any grizzlies. So, it can be very confusing about whether or not you are fully cleared to carry your firearm on the trail with you. Dangerous animals on the Appalachian Trail. Watch out for the little critters! Although relatively safe, the same is true for hiking the Appalachian Trail. Thank you. I did find that I got confused while leaving the trail to pee, so I always left my pack beside the trail. Be polite if you have no choice, and then put as much distance between them and you as possible. It also tracks your progress on the trail where family and friends can follow your movements online. There’s really no magical way to reassure family members other than to just go hiking and come back in one piece. You will also be forced onto some not-so-hot sections of eroded trail with high exposure. Download the trail maps to your phone. It is one of the reasons that mice are a problematic and universal experience in the shelters along the Trail. He recovered and completed his hike the next year. Mountains seem to invite tales of mystery and danger. If a bear comes sniffing around at night, you don’t want your food near. How many times do you yell at the stupid blonde in a scary movie to not do something! Don’t be creepy or weird towards other hikers. Getting hopelessly lost or falling ill, wild animals and dangerous weather are … You may also find it quite difficult to find a partner for a thru-hike. So, avoid any possible confrontation by storing your food properly. (Unless in bear country then see link below) These are wild ponies found on the Appalachian Trail. Is there a first time hike that you would suggest? This short hike is jaw-droppingly dangerous; it’s not named the world's most dangerous walkway without reason. A simple slip here can mean the difference between finishing your hike or having to take a medical evacuation chopper. I would even say, don’t listen to headphones in New Jersey where there’s lots of bears or Pennsylvania where there’s lots of rattlesnakes. Yes, go to the Himalayas. Contact | Privacy Policy. As well as being against the ‘spirit’ of hiking, carrying a gun can alienate you from your fellow hikers. The Appalachian TrailPlace is a website offering hiking information relevant to the Appalachian Trail. So I guess you can say I’m afraid of babbling brooks. I hope this post did something to ease some of your concerns about the dangers of the Appalachian Trail. The most vicious animals you are likely to encounter will be domestic dogs brought to the trail by other hikers, or the domestic dogs … Even before the arrival of humans in America, grizzly bears did not populate the eastern side of the continent. So, just how dangerous is hiking the Appalachian Trail? The highest black bear populations on the trail are in … So if anyone talks about things that happen in scary movies I’d laugh at them and ask how “blonde are those roots!” Be aware of this feature if you ever do get lost. “On the Appalachian Trail, we have little subtle things, dehydration, norovirus from hikers spreading stomach flu to one another,” Mr. Graves said. Postholer.Com Resource for Hikers. But just how dangerous is hiking the Appalachian Trail, and what are those potential dangers? As long as you are competent and confident in your own abilities, there is no reason at all why you shouldn’t hike the Appalachian Trail alone. There are far too many mammals, birds, reptiles, … He begins by scaring you a little. Follow your first instinct. “Are you bringing a gun?” “A gun?! Katahdin is a dramatic climb that requires some more boulder scrambling. The answer to this question is similar to the one above. The truth is, nothing I or anyone else says will make all of the fear go away. If you are still being kept awake by the prospect of a bear attack, then maybe it is time to invest in some bear spray. However, on average, people cross 10 to 15 miles every day. It can take up to 7 months of your life to complete the Appalachian Trail, and there are not a whole lot of people out there willing to sacrifice that much of their lives to a hike. You are going to pass through some areas (particularly in Georgia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey) where there are large black bear populations. It is not a good thing if you fail to hear it. Do not force animals to flee. (No offense to blonde haired folks. Driving to the starting point is probably the most dangerous part of any expedition. Animals. Here are a couple reasons why people suggest a hiker should carry a gun on the Appalachian Trail. Generally speaking, there is some real danger of animals that can attack you along the trail. The summit has one of the best views on the entire Appalachian Trail… and celebration awaits. It is almost impossible not to make friends on the trail. Appalachian Mountains - Appalachian Mountains - Plant and animal life: From Maine to Georgia, the Appalachian Mountain system was once almost totally covered with forest. This Complete Hiking the Appalachian Trail Blog has some of the best Appalachian Trail thru hike tips and information you will need to successfully complete your AT thru hike 2021. You fail to hear it the us East coast bites happen to intoxicated young men rattle is a that! In ninja stealth mode small but harmful organisms Park, I saw a young lady near. 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