Jane Lee and Stephen Coburn, both of Monticello, are on the 2,200-mile journey of the Appalachian Trail. Coburn & Lee provide this installment as a first-person account from their hike:
As I write this, we have now covered 240 miles. One of the questions I often receive is, “Where do you sleep?” Along the trail you will find a variety of shelters and campsites. We prefer the shelter because it is easier at end of a long day. Shelters are built and maintained by Appalachian Trail Clubs. Sections of the trail are kept by the clubs. Some of the shelters are small sleeping 4-6 people. Other shelters are bigger sleeping up to 16 people. Sharing such a small space is interesting to say the least. You encounter loud snores, late night conversation, early morning wake ups, and food ideas. I have included a couple of photos of a few shelters. These shelters provide cover in bad weather and help create communities.
We are often asked by non- hikers about our food. What do you eat on trail? We typically carry 3-4 days of food. Dehydrated meals are common on the trail. Our favorite is chili mac with Fritos! We eat a lot of Ramen Noodles! Some of the meals are hit and miss, but aren’t too bad. You do get hungry and enjoy when you can stop at a restaurant. One night I ate about 5000 calories at Wendy’s! Snacks during the day are also important to maintain energy and strength. Trail mix, energy bars, snickers, and Oreo’s keep us moving.
We are currently about half way through Pennsylvania. We hope to enter New Jersey in a couple of weeks. But first, we have to navigate through boulders in “Rocksylvania”. The rocks are relentless! So there are days it is a slow go, at least for us. It is important to not get caught up in the miles others are hiking. Hikers say, “hike your own hike.”
We are still on course to arrive in Maine in late July or early August. Until then, we keep walking! Every morning Jane asks me, “What are we going to do today?” I respond, “We get to hike the AT!” So, we hike on! We are amazed by the beauty and grateful for the opportunity to experience and explore this great country. You can also follow our adventure on Facebook @SCoburnImages. Stay present and be encouraged!
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