Slowly but surely we’re getting all the gear we need for the trail.  I’m trying something different this time around, lightweight backpacking.  I’m used to having way more weight on my back than I need to carry, but through discussing it with many people, was introduced to the brilliant idea of lightweight backpacking.

When I first started planning this hike, I was pretty overwhelmed.  There was so much information and so much I felt I needed to know.  I didn’t really know where to start.  Right at this overwhelming point, I happened to get into a conversation with a neighbor in Tennessee and he pointed me in the direction of a few websites (backpackinglight.com, hikelight.com, and whiteblaze.net).  I was obsessed.  I didn’t stop reading all of these websites for a week.  I couldn’t talk about anything except for backpacking gear or the trail.  I could feel people started getting bored with me in our conversations; I had a one-track mind.  Little by little, a plan to hike the trail and a gear list came together. 

After countless hours researching (and talking non-stop about the trail), I made it my goal to work towards a base-weight (before food and water) of twelve pounds or less.  This is a big cut in weight for the type of backpacking I am accustomed to (and a cut to my wallet) but I’m excited to move towards a lighter and easier way to backpack.

To make this a little more interesting for everyone, I was hoping I could get people to post some questions about anything trail-related you would be interested in reading about.  Whether it is about gear, the trail, or anything else that comes to mind.  I’d like to make this blog a little more interactive for everyone.  When I know that the reader has an interest in what I am writing, it is much more appealing to me than simply making you read what I post.  Please feel free to post your own story of a long backpacking trip or a new piece of gear you’re exciting about.  I want to share this experience with as many people as possible.  I hope to inspire people to get out and plan their own dream backpacking trip.

Micaela
2/21/2012 11:50:39

I'm reading but don't know enough about hiking trails to have any good questions! What will you guys be eating??

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Missy
2/22/2012 05:44:03

Soooo Will, here are a few questions that I have gotten from people...how will you eat? How long will this take? Will your backpack really only weigh 12 pounds, and how is this possible?

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Lisa
2/26/2012 06:58:42

Wish we could go with you! Maybe we can hike with you at points along the way. Can you estimate when you'll be in a place where we might meet up? Possible places where we could meet: Cosby, TN; Hot Springs, NC; Harpers Ferry, WVa. And it would be really cool to meet you when you finish up in Maine. Will you be posting your tentative schedule so we can make a plan? Happy Trails!

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