Starting November 1, 2005, Yoni and I hiked for almost a full year (through the winter). It took us 356 days (this is not a typo) to walk across the U.S., longitudinally, three times incorporating the three major hiking trails in the United States, but we also extended it by about 2800 miles. This trip was over 10,000 miles long. We started from Cap Gaspe, Quebec, Canada to Key West, Florida following the Eastern Continental Trail (which is the International Appalachian Trail, Appalachian Trail, Benton MacKaye Trail, Georgia Pinhote Trail, Alabama Pinhote Trail, Alabama Trail, Florida Trail, and a bit of road walking). Then we drove over to the Pacific Crest Trail and thru-hiked that northbound from the California/Mexico border to the Washington/Canada border. After that we drove to Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta, Canada and southbounded the Continental Divide Trail, back to the Mexican border. It was fun and challenging hiking through the winter and during different seasons than last time.I did the math if you are all interested:
- Total mileage: a bit over 10,000 miles (probably around 10,700 miles)
- Days: 356
- Avg. mileage per day: 28.1 miles
- Zero days: 26
- Avg mileage per day on hiking days: 30.3 miles
It was very challenging maintaining this pace for the entire year, especially through the fresh snowfall and short daylight in the winter, the heavy snowpack of the Sierras and Cascades, and fresh snowfall in Colorado.Some days in the fresh snow, I hiked about 19 hours to get my mileage in, averaging about 1 to 1.5 miles per hour.It was amazing though because so many people say, “there is no solitude on the AT”, so after this trip my reply to them is “that they are not hiking during the right time of year”.We hardly saw anybody on any of the trails, since I was slightly off-season in most areas.
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