Matt Rosefsky's apartment
Appalachian National Scenic Trail
According to my book, this 26-mile, 4-day, 3-night backpacking adventure along the Appalachian Trail (AT) “has almost everything that makes hiking worthwhile in Central Virginia. The trek never drops below 3,200 feet for the first two days, and it crosses the 4060-foot summit of the Priest on the third day out. From the Priest it plummets more than 3000 feet, just to regain most of that elevation along a waterfall-studded creek. These up-and-down efforts are amply rewarded. There are magnificent views, rhododendron-lined native-trout streams, remote forest glens, open fields of green grass, wildflowers by the thousands, and ample opportunities for quiet, isolated, and scenic campsites.” I’m not sure about flowers at this time of year, but we should get some great fall colors!
My book (“50 Hikes in Northern Virginia”) specifies the first through fourth day hikes as 7.7 miles, 7.2 miles, 9.5 miles, and 1.7 miles. This daily schedule is considerably less than what most AT thru-hikers hike in a day. Each day leads to an AT shelter where we can stay the night. Alternatively, we can pick our own distances and camp out where we want (we’ll decide on the trail). The last day is short (just 1.7 miles) so we should get back to Cville at a decent hour. This hike is 1-way so we’ll leave cars at both ends of the hike.
Final notes: please come to the backpacking informational meeting (stay tuned to email, probably will be on Tuesday eve 9/24). If you haven’t backpacked (hiking with all camping gear on back) before, please come on the Backpacking for Beginners adventure (9/28-29) to try it out before committing to 4 days on the trail.
Outdoors at UVa provides:
3 dinners, 3 breakfasts, gas money, and if you need: big backpack, sleeping bag and pad, tent, and a seat in a car.
You must bring:
Please pack at least 1 liter of water (two half-liter / 16-oz. bottles might be most convenient), 3 lunches, last-day lunch money (we’ll stop off somewhere on way back to Cville), preferably waterproof hiking boots, bug spray, sun tan lotion, toilet paper, first aid items, flashlight and warm clothes for night, spooky bedtime stories. This adventure is rain or shine, so bring rain gear. See also internet link for reference. Try your best not to bring any cotton clothes, for wet cotton is cold and wet for a long time whereas non-cotton stuff provides some warmth even when wet. (Remember your UVa Outdoors 10% discount at Blue Ridge Mountain Sports!)