Camino de Santiago Gear List

Camino de Santiago Gear List

Below are two complete Camino de Santiago gear lists, one for the men and one for the women. While walking the Appalachian Trail Chica and I dreamed up the next adventure. We both agreed a trip to Spain to walk the 500 mile pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela would be the trip of a lifetime.

Taking what learned from minimalist living backpacking through the AT we designed out Camino packing list to cover all our needs while at the same time allow us the freedom a lighter backpack affords. Here is our Camino de Santiago complete equipment list, along with a video explaining why we chose the gear we did and additional commentary about our selections.

Sunsets’ Camino de Santiago Gear List

BackPack/Sleep System

Backpack – ULA Equipment Photon 35 Liter Backpack

ULA Photon Backpack
Down Throw – Similar to this one.
Sleeping Bag Liner treated with Permethrin
Ear Plugs – Mack’s Pillow Soft Silicon
Shoulder Strap Water Bottle Holder

Worn Clothes

Shorts – Nike Running
Synthetic Shirt – Russell Athletics Dri-Power
Socks – Darn Tough, Light Cushion Ankle Socks
Trail Running Shoes – La Sportiva Wildcat


Bandana/Baklava – Buff
Sun Hat – ExOfficio Bugs Away

Stuff Sacks/Other

ZPacks 14 Liter Large Rectangular Dry Bag
ZPacks 7 Liter Med Plus Dry Bag
ZPacks Wallet
Wine Corkscrew

Other Clothes

Long sleeve Base Layer – Patagonia Cap 3
T-Shirt – Patagonia

T-Shirt – Beatles Let it Be
Long Sleeve Sun Shirt – Columbia
Convertible Khakis – The North Face
Chill Rag
Town Shoes/Shower Shoes – Xero Ztrail Sandals
Puffy Jacket – Mountain Hardware Ghost Whisperer 

First Aid

Duct Tape
Leukotape
Ibuprofen
Imodium
Compede
Bandaids
Clothespins/Paracord
Nail Clippers

Toiletries

Lush Shampoo Bar
Razor
Toothbrush/Toothpaste
Deodorant (travel size)

Electronics

Phone/Camera/GPS/Video – iPhone 7 Plus 256gb
Phone Charger – Ankor 20,000

Chica’s Camino de Santiago Gear List

Clothes & Shower Bag:

Fleece Pullover Hoodie CudlDuds
Long Sleeve Shirt (mid-layer)
2nd DT socks
2nd INJ socks
Boho scarf
T-shirt (sleep) grey icebreaker
Skort (sleep)
Leggings (Athleta pockets)
Bra
Under Wear – ExOfficio
Quick dry towel
Lush Shampoo Bar
Deodorant (travel size)
Razor
Hair Brush, Hair Bands

Electronics Bag:

Converter Euro Plug
Plug with 2 USB Chargers
Extra Batteries
Headlamp – Black Diamond ReVolt

Nighttime/Sleep Bag:

Down Throw (Costco)
Sleep Bag Liner
Toothbrush/Toothpaste
Socks
Tweezers, Mrror, Skin Clip, Nail File
Xero Ztrail Sandals

Rain Bag (back of pack pocket):

Rain Jacket – Patagonia Torrent Shell
Umbrella

Baseball Cap

Brain Bag:

Guidebook, Notebook, Pen
Reading Glasses
Crossbody Bag
Pee Rag
Tampons
Daypack

Wear

Under Armor Shirt
Sunglasses
BUFF

Bike Shorts
Socks Darn Tough
Socks INJINJI
Watch – Timex Ironman
Bra – Smartwool
Under Wear – ExOfficio
Trail Runners (Altra Lone Peaks 3.0)

Outside of Pack:

Carmex lip balm
Hand Sanitizer
Runningluv
1 Liter Smart Water Bottle
Headphones
iPhone 7 Plus

How the Appalachian Trail Wrecked My Life

How the Appalachian Trail Wrecked My Life

Please welcome Stacia who is guest posting with us today. Stacia grew up on a farm in the southern-most part of Georgia and was bitten by the outdoorsy bug at a young age, often playing in the woods on her family’s property for hours at a time. But it wasn’t until college that she first started hiking and eventually backpacking. At age 26 and again at 27, she attempted a solo thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail and has been addicted to long-distance hiking and the adventure lifestyle ever since. Find more of her story on her blog Adventure Like A Girl or Instagram. I hope you enjoy her story as much as we do! — Chica & Sunsets

Three years ago, I set out on the biggest adventure of my life. I’d never been camping before, and I’d hardly ever been hiking, but I had decided I was going to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail. I’d be lying if I told you that I had any idea the profound impact this decision would have on my life. I guess you never really know what all of the nuanced consequences will be of any major decision, but I’ll tell you this: The Appalachian Trail ruined my life, and it was the best thing that ever happened to me.  

The Appalachian Trail ruined my ability to make small talk. I’m guilty of completely tuning out whenever the people around me are discussing who lost the football game last night or that girl from work’s new boyfriend. I just have no interest in the mundane goings on that most people choose to fill their time thinking about. When you’ve stood on a mountain top with views for miles or camped underneath a star-filled sky, something inside of you changes. You realize that there are so many vast and important things going on in the universe. These are the things I want to talk about, not celebrity gossip.

The Appalachian Trail ruined my perceptions of humanity. Before I set out to hike a long trail, I’ll admit to being wary of strangers, being skeptical of someone’s intentions when they offered goodwill. I was a self-described cynic. But, after having complete strangers pay for my breakfast, bring me a cold soda just because, leave jugs of water at a road crossing without ever seeing the face of who they were helping, offer me a place to stay inside their home, and go out of their way to drive me somewhere I needed to be, I lost that cynicism. Now, I’m guilty of seeing the good in everyone. I have the ability to assume positive intentions even in situations that turn out badly, and my favorite person to meet is usually a stranger.

The Appalachian Trail ruined my white picket fence dream. Before the trail, I was living in a fully furnished, decorated home – with a mortgage to boot. Like a lot of Americans, I was neck deep in the rat race, placing inflated value on material possessions that I thought would make me happy. Home was a 1600 square foot house with a huge backyard. Now, I don’t make purchases if the item isn’t a necessity and I live in a 16 foot travel trailer. Rather than stability and security, I crave adventure and mobility. I don’t need things. I need experiences.

The Appalachian Trail ruined my negative body image. I’ve always been chubby, and ever since I was of the age where I started comparing my body to other girls, I’ve been self-conscious about my weight. I won’t say that the Appalachian Trail completely destroyed this feeling, but when you are literally climbing mountains day in and day out, your thoughts about your body are bound to change. For three months, my body was able to carry me and all of my earthly belongings over countless mountains for 8-10 hours a day. The longest I’d ever walked in a day prior to this was probably 5 miles. Three weeks into my first thru-hike attempt I knocked out my first 20 mile day. TWENTY MILES. You could never have told me this body was capable of that. While I still struggle at times with accepting my weight, I have a much healthier relationship with my body post-hike. I’m proud of what it is capable of, and thankful that it is fit and healthy enough to continue to do everything I ask of it.

The Appalachian Trail ruined my perceptions of beauty. Before the trail, I remember being that judgy girl who wore fake eyelashes to class and thought girls didn’t look “put together” without makeup. While hiking, I had somehow made it to Pearisburg, VA before I caught a glimpse of my wild and feral makeup-free face in a streaky mirror at a cheap hotel. I startled and looked away, disconcerted because I thought the girl in the mirror was beautiful, but there was no way that was me. I went from someone so insecure that I didn’t leave the house without a full face of makeup to someone who barely wears any, because I think a natural face is prettier and a dirty, sweaty, flushed face on top of a mountain is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.

The Appalachian Trail ruined my plans for the future. Before hiking, I thought I’d get married, have a kid or two maybe, and spend my days working to pay off that house I’d bought. I had gone to graduate school and was going to become a teacher. I had a long-term boyfriend that I was planning to marry. I spent 26 years chasing this dream only to find out that it wasn’t really mine. It took walking through the woods for three months to figure that out. I sold the house, I broke up with the boy, and I worked service-industry jobs for a while until I figured out what it was that I really wanted.

I feel like my life started the day I stepped foot on the Appalachian Trail, passed that first white blaze, and pointed my heart toward Maine. Until that moment, I’d been going through the motions that I thought I was supposed to go through. I’d been waiting for life to happen, not realizing that it was happening all around me and I was missing the point. Now, I feel as though I have crammed more life into these past three years than I experienced in all of the first 26. I’ve attempted two thru hikes, each lasting 2-3 months. I’ve walked over 2,000 miles on the Appalachian Trail, and countless hundreds on other trails. I’ve gone hiking, camping and backpacking completely alone. I moved into a camper and traveled the east coast for a year with just my dogs for company. I’ve checked items off my bucket list, such as climbing a 14ker (14,000 foot mountain) and learning how to back-up a trailer. I am so much more self-assured, confident, and bold than I ever was before. I have friends all over the country that feel like family.

I’m on a course so different from the one I was on pre-hike that I often don’t recognize things I said or did back then as being my own memories. I may be less financially stable, I may not be certain what the future holds, I may feel at times like I’m just blowing aimlessly in the wind. But I’m endlessly, deliriously, insanely happy. The Appalachian Trail ruined my life, and it was the best thing that ever happened to me.

Stacia: It was a pleasure having you! We love how the Appalachian Trail has ruined your life!
To our readers: If you would like to guest post with us, please contact us at 2hikers@appalachiantrailtales.com.

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5 Ways to beat the heat  on an AT thru-hike

5 Ways to beat the heat on an AT thru-hike

The Appalachian Trail is famous for its Green Tunnel and one might think with all that shade, sun, and heat are not a problem, one would be wrong. Avoiding hot days on a long-distance backpacking trip is near impossible and over the course of six months and 2,200 miles on the AT, you WILL encounter oppressive temperatures. Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are viable threats – be safe.

Here are five ways to beat the heat on the AT.

1) Hike early or hike late

One of the easiest ways to beat the heat on the AT is to avoid the hottest time of each day – typically between 11 am and 2 pm. If your goal is to complete a thru-hike you can’t take a day off every time the weather is not cooperating … you would never hike.

So, we work with what we’ve got and in the heat that means getting up extra early and hiking in the morning, finding shade for a mid-day nap and continuing your hike into the evening. Similarly, you can eschew the day all together and hike through the night, seeing (and hearing) the trail in a whole new light (pun intended). Make sure you have a good torch/headlamp, preferably one that is rechargeable, so you don’t have to carry heavy batteries. We used the Black Diamond Revolt.

2) Use a cooling towel

The cooling rag was my savior through all of New Jersey and New York. I would have gone mad without it, which is why it made our Gear that will Save Your Sanity post. This cheap piece of two-plied fabric stays cool if it is wet. Dip it in a stream and twirl it overhead for several rotations letting the air cool the water down. Then place it over your head, wipe your brow, or wrap it around your neck to cool you down. You can twirl it to cool it down as long as it is damp.

An alternative would be to do the same with your Buff or bandana, although these won’t stay as cool as long.

3) Stay hydrated and use electrolytes

I would venture a guess that most thru-hikers are chronically dehydrated. Even under pleasant weather conditions it is tough to hydrate someone hiking up and down mountains 10 hours a day. Add to the effort needed to complete a thru, the fact that long distance hikers are constantly trying to manage weight (water weighs 2.2 pounds per liter) and it’s easy to see hikers not drinking enough.

To beat the heat on the AT a hiker must consume more water. One way to do this is to camel-up at watering holes. Don’t just fill your Smart Water bottle, drink a liter or two in addition. The water from the spring or stream will be cold and delicious, not like the unappetizing water in your bottle after an hour in the heat, and you can carry less water to the next source.

Also, it is wise to add an electrolyte mix to your water. In the heat your body is a sieve for salt and you must replace it, otherwise the lack of sodium will cramp your style … literally. Not all water mixes have electrolytes so be sure to check the label. Our favorites were Propel and Mio.

At one point my shirt had salt crystals all over it and I was cramping severely once I got into our tent each night. In addition to the water mixes I would take salt packets from fast food joints and add them to my water. Once, I even packed out a glass jar of pickles, so I could drink the juice. Heavy, but worth it.

4) Proper clothing/ hat

Light colored clothing reflects the sun while dark colors and black absorb the heat. This is why khakis are so popular in the desert terrain. In addition to color choice many hikers disregard wearing long sleeve shirts in the summer, thinking they will be too hot. With today’s wicking fabrics long-sleeved shirts are a viable option for sun protection.

Another overlooked item is a sun hat. Many choose just to wear a baseball cap and while better than nothing, doesn’t protect the hiker as well as a hat that can shield the eyes and face AND the neck and ears like a sunhat. I used the Exoffico Bugs Away hat. It not only provided protection from the sun, it was ventilated so I didn’t overheat, it was pretreated with permethrin for mosquito and tick protection, and it could be crushed down into my pack and still retain its shape once back on my head.

5) Flip Out

Assuming you are hiking NOBO (northbound) you have the option of shuttling north in the summer. We had many friends who did this when they could no longer take the heat. They shuttled up to Maine and hiked south giving them cooler temps along the way.

For us, we wanted Katahdin to be the culmination of our trip more than we wanted to cool down. So, we suffered through about 3 weeks of heat and coped using the methods above.

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We are participants in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and other affiliate programs. These programs are designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com or other websites. All opinions are our own. 

20 Hiking Quotes for Motivation, Inspiration, and Wisdom

20 Hiking Quotes for Motivation, Inspiration, and Wisdom

In only one or two lines of concise language, quotes can convey humor, stoke our motivation, cause a sentimental sigh, and inspire greatness. The following 20 hiking quotes will make you smile, motivate you to get off the couch, and mentally fuel your next trek.

Go Take a Hike!

Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.

“Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.”
~ Jack 
Kerouac

Quote: Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt. – John Muir

“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.”
~ John Muir

No pain no rain no Maine

No Pain, No Rain, No Maine
~ Incessant, but accurate Appalachian Trail saying

Quote “Mountains are not Stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals where I practice my religion.” Anatoli Boukreev

“Mountains are not Stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals where I practice my religion.
~ Anatoli Boukreev

Quote: "It’s not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves." - Sir Edmund Hillary

“It’s not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.” – Sir Edmund Hillary

Quote: "If you are seeking creative ideas, go out walking. Angels whisper to a man when he goes for a walk." – Raymond Inmon

“If you are seeking creative ideas, go out walking. Angels whisper to a man when he goes for a walk.”
~ Raymond Inmon

Quote: “I think,” said Christopher Robin, “that we ought to eat all our provisions now, so we won’t have so much to carry.” A. A. Milne

“I think,” said Christopher Robin, “that we ought to eat all our provisions now, so we won’t have so much to carry.”​
~ A,A. Milne

Quote: "Hiking and happiness go hand in hand or foot in boot." Diane Spicer

“Hiking and happiness go hand in hand or foot in boot.”
~ Diane Spicer

Quote: “The man on top of the mountain didn't fall there.” Vince Lombardy

“The man on top of the mountain didn’t fall there.”
~ Vince Lombardy

Quote: "The best view comes after the hardest climb."

“The best view comes after the hardest climb.”
~ Unknown

Quote: "Mountains have a way of dealing with overconfidence." Hermann Buhl

“Mountains have a way of dealing with overconfidence.”
~ Hermann Buhl

Quote: "After a day’s walk, everything has twice its usual value." G.M. Trevelyan

“After a day’s walk, everything has twice its usual value.”
~ G.M. Trevelyan

“Fall down seven times and stand up eight.”
~ Japanese Proverb

Quote: "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived." - Henry David Thoreau

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”
~ Henry David Thoreau

Quote: “Climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air and behold the view. Climb it so you can see the world, not so the world can see you.” David McCullough Jr.

“Climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air and behold the view. Climb it so you can see the world, not so the world can see you.”
~ David McCullough Jr.

Quote: “Nature is not a place to visit. It is home.” Gary Snyder

 “Nature is not a place to visit. It is home.”
~ Gary Snyder

Quote “If you think you’ve peaked, find a new mountain."

 “If you think you’ve peaked, find a new mountain.”
~ Unknown

Quote: “Attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure” – Bob Bitchin

“Attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure”
~ Bob Bitchin

Quote: “It isn't the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it's the pebble in your shoe.” Muhammad Ali

“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.”
~ Muhammad Ali

Quote "Returning home is the most difficult part of long-distance hiking; You have grown outside the puzzle and your piece no longer fits." Cindy Ross

“Returning home is the most difficult part of long-distance hiking; You have grown outside the puzzle and your piece no longer fits.”
~ Cindy Ross

We are participants in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and other affiliate programs. These programs are designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com or other websites. All opinions are our own. 

Snakes on the Appalachian Trail

Snakes on the Appalachian Trail

Overall, Chica and I were surprised by the number of animals we saw during our 6-months on the Appalachian Trail. Maybe it’s because we hiked as a couple and were not very stealthy, but we just didn’t see that many, especially mammals. Four bears, two moose, a few rabbits, a dozen deer, one raccoon and a whole bunch of squirrels—that’s it. The same cannot be said of snakes on the Appalachian Trail. We saw an amazing 37 snakes over the course of 179 days and 2,189 miles.

Not that we polled everyone we saw, but it seemed our reptile sightings were much higher than others’. We didn’t get a photo or video of all 37 snakes, but we did of quite a few. I will post them below along with a description and snake identity. There are two photos that are not ours (copperhead and brown water snake), but they are snakes that are common enough on the AT to include.

Venomous Snakes on the Appalachian Trail

There are only three venomous snakes that reside along the AT—the timber rattlesnake, the copperhead, and the cottonmouth water moccasin. Almost all snakes just want to be left alone and venomous snakes would prefer to reserve their venom for prey. Therefore, snake bites are extremely rare and typically only happen when a snake is stepped on (or reached for on a rock scramble) or messed with by some idiot wanting a cool selfie or channeling their inner Steve Irwin.

Cottonmouth Water Moccasin

It is very unlikely that you will encounter a cottonmouth. While they exist in states that encompass the trail, their range along the AT is only the very most southern part of the trail in Georgia. As their name implies, they like water specifically swamplands and river floodplains. Neither of which are common in the early Georgia section.

Timber Rattlesnake

“Hey Chica, stop walking. Ok, now turn around and look down.”

“Oh, shit!”

“You just stepped over a timber rattlesnake.”

That short but exhilarating conversation happened in Virginia’s Jefferson National Forest. The snake Chica stepped over was a juvenile, only 14 inches long and not a single rattle had yet grown on its tail. But that head, with its triangular shape and chipmunk cheeks, there was no mistaking what this snake was.

This rattler would be the first of a whopping 12 timber rattlesnakes we would see on our thru-hike. The reptile’s demeanor was mellow, even as it was bounded over. Things might have turned out a bit differently if Chica would have stepped on, instead of over, the stick-looking creature. But she didn’t. All of the rattlesnakes we saw, except two, were mellow, they did not coil or rattle or otherwise exhibit a defensive posture.

The scariest encounter with a rattler was in Pennsylvania. This one was not mellow at all, it made its presence known with the tell tale (or is it tell tail) maraca shake. We had stopped to get some water. The spring source was up a short rock scramble and while I fetched water to filter Jen sat her pack down against a large boulder.

We filtered and drank, idling several feet from where her pack lay. When we were done, Chica went to pick up her backpack and immediately stopped at the sound of swarming bees. She stepped toward the snake before realizing where the sound was coming from.

In gathering the water, I had walked right by the snake, never seeing it. Maybe it was under a rock and it came out to check me out. Regardless, Chica grabbing her pack set him off. I was far enough away to get a quick video (see above). Chica’s hiking poles were close to the snake, but I was able to retrieve them, and we made an uneventful exit. After leaving we wondered if we should have tried leave a note warning other hikers, but this thought only occurred several miles past the water source as we were in a shock daze from our encounter. We did mention it to several southbound hikers that past us.

Rattlesnakes are large and can be up to six feet in length. They like hiding in rocks and in tall grass. Three of the 12 we saw were laying in tall grass that paralleled the trail, just a foot or so from where people were hiking. Another four were stretched out across the trail in a sunny spot. Like all snakes timber rattlers are cold blooded and need sun to help maintain body temperature and digest food.

Eastern Timber Rattlesnake hiding in the grass. One of snakes seen on the Appalachian Trail.

Copperhead

We did not see any copperhead snakes on our thru-hike. It’s strange, we ran into multiple hikers who saw only copperheads and no rattlesnakes. The copperhead exists along the trail., mainly from Georgia to New York. They ambush their prey and are masters at camouflage as their pattern and coloring match fallen leaves, and they grow to between 2 to 3 feet in length.

copperhead snake

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Non-Venomous Snakes on the Appalachian Trail

There are many varieties of non-venomous snakes you may come across while hiking in any of the 14 states alongth the trail. We saw our first snake in North Carolina and our last snake in New Hampshire. We did not see snakes in Georgia, Tennessee, West Virginia, New Jersey, or Vermont. So, in 8 out of 14 states we came across a snake or two. Below are the non-venomous snakes we came across along with one that we didn’t, but you may very well.

Garter Snake

This snake and the next one on the list were the most prolific. They seemed to be always moving. Where some of the bigger snakes would just lay there, look at you and not move, the garter wanted to get away, fast. They come in many color schemes from dull to vibrant.

Garter Snake on the Appalachian Trail

The most interesting encounter with this snake species happened when we were hiking with a friend. She screeched and came to an abrupt halt. I pulled up beside her and she pointed a few feet in front of her and down. There was a garter snake, head raised about 8 inches off the ground heading right toward us.

I knew the snake was harmless but the way it was moving with its head high, and towards us, was menacing. As it got closer we could see it had something in its mouth. The grasshopper looked like it could get away and, people present or not, that snake was not going to let that happen.

Black Rat Snake

If you thru-hike the Appalachian Trail it is highly likely you will come across a black rat snake.Growing as long as seven feet this black beauty is difficult to miss. As their name implies the snake is fond of rodents. It makes sense then that they are sometimes found around AT shelters. They perform a great service and are harmless, so don’t go getting all Indiana Jones on them.

 

Eastern Hognose Snake

The hognose snake was by far the most memorable snake we came across on the trail. Like many of the snakes we saw this guy was laying right across the trail catching some rays. For non-venomous snakes that were laying in the trail, we tried to go around them. If there was brush or a drop off or some other obstacle that prevent us from doing that I would touch snake’s tail with my trekking pole and they would nonchalantly slither away.

Not the hognose! It acted offended when I touched its tail, as if I had grabbed it, swung it around my head a couple of times and then set it down. It was pissed. It coiled, hissed loudly, and then inflated its neck so that it looked like a cobra. Then the rest of the body grew as well as it puffed up the main body to look bigger.

It seems this is a common drama played out by hognose when it is threatened. If all this didn’t work, it might have tried a bluff strike whereby the snake strikes with a closed mouth (bites from hognose snakes are very rare). If there was still a threat, then the last line of defense would be to play dead. It would flop over on its back and stick out its tongue to its darnedest to look pathetic and unappetizing. For this one though, after the puffing up it eventually moved on into the brush.  What a cool experience.

Milk Snake

The first snake we saw on the trail was in North Carolina and was a milk snake. Although the milk snake has the coloring and somewhat the same pattern as a copperhead the diminutive head is a sign that it is harmless. We ended up seeing two other milk snakes along the way and none of them ever seemed to be in a hurry nor were they bothered by our presence.

Brown Water Snake

Another snake that is relatively common (but we didn’t see one) is the brown water snake. The photo below was taken by our friends who are thru-hiking this year. This was snapped at the river that runs through the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC).

Brown Water Snake Nantahala Outdoor Center

Photo credit Barbara Hurne

Eastern Ringneck Snake

A small grass snake with a bright yellow ring around its neck, these are common along the trail (we only saw one though).

Unidentified Snakes

The last two I don’t know what they are. If you know let me know in the comments and I will add the info to the blog post. The black one I just love its pattern. These have since been identified. The first is a red-bellied snake and the second is another garter snake. 

Thanks for joining us on a tour of the snakes we saw on our thru-hike of the AT. I would love to hear your story of snake encounters on the Appalachian Trail. If you have one, comment below.

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We are participants in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and other affiliate programs. These programs are designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com or other websites. All opinions are our own. 

5 Women-Specific Gear Hiking Choices

5 Women-Specific Gear Hiking Choices

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I loved being a woman thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail last year. Yes, I was with my husband, and that was epic, but I didn’t let that take away from the pride I had for myself as a woman. When I was young, and I first heard of the Appalachian Trail, it was only associated with guys hiking it. But here I was – a girl, a women, a chica – doing it along with the guys, and other women as well! There are more and more female thru-hikers each year, currently about 30%, and I love that it’s on the rise. Who knows, maybe some day we’ll take over the trail? Girl power! (more…)

Stay tuned for our next adventure ... walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain this September.

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