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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Our Hike By the Numbers

Greetings from Boston! One week ago, we reached the summit of Katahdin, and that already feels like a very distant place. Since then, we have traveled from Millinocket to Augusta, Maine, where we spent a wonderful weekend with Kelsey and other Colby friends. Then we hopped on a bus to Boston, where we've been crashing (thanks, Emily and Joel) for three days now. Our main activity has been eating any and all types of food that weren't available to us on the trail, and all this time with friends and food has helped us get happily reacclimated to civilization.

Looking back on our time on the Appalachian Trail, so many sights and stories come to mind. And so do some numbers. It's such a long journey, that it's hard not to quantify certain parts of it. Everyone hikes the trail in their own fashion. Here's how it went for us:

2,181 - Number of miles hiked on the A.T.
169 - Number of days on the trail
20 - Number of "zero" days (days off)
14.6 - Average daily mileage (not including "zero" days)
25 - Number of miles on our longest day (in Shenandoah National Park, VA)
1.8 - Number of miles on our shortest day (into Gorham, NH)

14 - Number of states we walked in (GA, NC, TN, VA, WV, MD, PA, NJ, NY, CT, MA, VT, NH, ME)
3 - Number of pairs of boots that we each wore through

515,000 - Total number of feet gained in elevation ("It's like climbing Everest 17 times.")

310 - Approximate number of thru-hikers or section hikers we met
7:1 - Gender ratio (Men: Women) among hikers we met

9 - Number of days in our longest stretches without showers
21 - Number of books read (combined)

12 - Number of bears seen
1 - Number of rattlesnakes seen
0 - Number of moose seen
Countless - Number of rabbits, snakes, frogs, grouse and deer seen

Another important aspect of our experience was the food we ate in trail towns along the way. We decided to put together a list of our favorites by category in what we will call...

The Hiker Food Awards!
Best Pizza - Anile's Restaurant in Boiling Springs, PA
Best Pancakes - Miss Adams Diner in Adams, MA
Best Ice Cream - Claude's Creamery in Palmerton, PA
Best Vegetarian Food - Sunnybank Inn in Hot Springs, NC
*
For the time being, we are glad to be done hiking, and our sore joints are thanking us for the rest. But we know that we've been bit by the "hiking bug," and it's only a matter of time before the trail calls us back again...who knows, maybe in a few years, we'll be blogging about our adventures on the Pacific Crest Trail...

Until then, happy trails to all!

Love,
Lara and Zack