Appalachian Pages is a hiker’s guide to theAppalachian Trail designed and written by AT hikers for AT hikers.
I first got a good look at this book last month, when I met Jared, a southbound thru-hiker, on the Appalachian Trail in the 100 mile Wilderness. We were sitting around waiting for a ride, so I opened it up to kill some time and I was blown away when I saw all of the information it contained. This is a must-have trail guide if you want to plan a hike of any length on theAppalachian Trail, and includes:
- Transportation options for getting to and from the trail, including local trail shuttles
- Trail town maps, including places to eat and resupply
- Maildrop packaging guidelines, post office locations and private mail drops
- Details about lodging prices and work for stay options
- Detailed information about shelter capacity, tenting pads, privy, and water sources
- Local regulations about hiking with dogs
- Tips on trail and town etiquette
- Outfitter and veterinarian locations
- GPS coordinates to trail head parking locations
- Emergency contact information for backpacking gear manufacturers
- Elevation profiles of the trail with mileages between landmarks, water, and shelters
- Perforated pages, so you can tear out just the sections you need
Let me show you some examples.
This is a map of Lincoln, New Hampshire, a trail town at the base of the Kinsman Range and Franconia Notch. If you are a hungry, smelly hiker stopping for a resupply, this map provides you with all of the information you need to get where you need to go and leave town clean and well fed, including restaurant locations, grocery stores, drug stores, a local hospital, the laundromat, and motels. I’ve never seen any other trail guide or map with this kind of detail.
Here is part of the next page, showing the section that I plan on hiking this weekend between Mt. Wolf and South Kinsman Mountain.
The first two columns on the left hand side of the page display the distance (in miles) to the northern and southern ends of the AT in Maine and Georgia. Next, each trail landmark is listed along with its elevation in the right most column. The squiggly, grey line running down the page represents the trail’s elevation profile. (This is a really clever use of space.)
If a location is a shelter, symbols to its right indicate the amenities available there. For example, I can tell you that the Eliza Brook Shelter, shown here, is a lean-to with a capacity of 8, that camping is permitted, tent sites are available, and that there is a water source and a privy.
Underneath the shelter name are 6 numbers and directional arrows that represent the southbound and northbound mileages of the next 3 shelters on the trail. This is handy information if you’re doing big miles and you want to know if it’s worth stopping for the day or continuing on to the next shelter before dark.
Appalachian Pages is written and kept up to date by two well know personalities in the AT hiker community, David Miller (AWOL), author of the AWOL on the Appalachian Trail, and Rick Towle (AT Troll), moderator of WhiteBlaze.net, a large online community of Appalachian Trail enthusiasts with 22,000 members.
Get your own copy for $15.95. Now that I’ve discovered this gem, I’m not sharing mine!
Disclosure: The author owns this product and purchased it using their own funds.
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