Today marked my return to Springer Mountain and the Southern Terminus of the Appalachian Trail. And while hiking the AT again isn’t my goal for right now, I must admit, I did have the brief thought of just hiking the AT again rather than hiking the Benton MacKaye Trail, as planned. As much fun as it might be to revisit the AT, though, that’s not why I’m here today.
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Trains are the way long-distance travel ought to work. Show up about half an hour before departure, get on the train, and off it goes, right on time. And as long as there isn’t anything weird, you wind up at your destination, also right on time, and with no bumpy turbulence or traffic to deal with.
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I first learned of the Benton MacKaye Trail in 2016 while hiking the Appalachian Trail. After I returned home from my AT thru-hike, I decided I was going to hike it, at some point in the future. It became one of the trails I was considering hiking in 2017, and in January of that year, I got a guidebook and maps from the Benton MacKaye Trail Association.
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Since no thru-hike is complete without a gear list, this is the list of equipment I’m taking with me on my hike of the Benton MacKaye Trail. This is largely an evolution of my gear from my Appalachian Trail, Long Trail, and Pacific Crest Trail thru-hikes. I’ve also written on the details of what gear changed, and why.
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