Appalachian Trail & Hiking Resources

Hello friends, since the blogroll feature has gone away I thought I’d list some of my favorite Appalachian Trail (AT) resources here on this page, check them out!                      ~ Rev Kane

happiness, appalachian trailThousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity. ~ John Muir


The AT Guide is the premiere site for David Miller’s (AWOL) trail guide, a must have for AT thru-hikers as well as a place to buy his fabulous book AWOL on the AT.

Appalachian Trials by Zach Davis is another great site and book, his book deals with the psychological aspects of thru-hiking, another great read and site!

Appalachian Trail Happiness by Michael “Rev” Kane

What I hope you can get out of this book is a feeling for the Appalachian Trail Community: thru-hikers, hostel owners, trail towns and trail angels who all conspire to make hiking the AT an amazing experience.  I knew the community existed, but the positive impact it had on me—the power of this community—completely caught me by surprise, a really pleasant surprise.  Sure, there will be a good bit about the trail, the geography, the weather and the mountains, but it’s mostly about the people, the culture and my own twisted brain.  The book is drawn out of three things: my journal entries, descriptions and definitions of trail terms, and the writings I undertook while hiking the trail. I also answered three questions every day; what was the most beautiful thing I encountered, what did I learn, what made me happy today?

As Far As The Eye Can See: Reflections Of An Appalachian Trail Hiker is a fantastic book.  It’s a little different in that it’s a bit more philosophical and poetic, less about day to day miles and such.  However, this hike was done in 1979, and what’s really fascinating are the differences in hiking the trail then versus now.  And some of the old ideas are pretty damn useful still, I definitely picked up a few tips and tricks from reading this one.

The Ultimate Hang: An Illustrated Guide to Hammock Camping – I love this book, it really does a great job of illustrating and talking about the basics of hammock camping.  One warning, you start dealing with hammocks and you may never sleep on the ground again.

Web Resources

atme fix 4

Appalachian Trail

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy – the place to start, facts, history, trivia and lots of good basic information about the Appalachian Trail

White – THE discussion board for AT related anything

Thru-hike food recommendations and recipes – a blog post about food on the Appalachian Trail

Required Smoky Mountain Backcountry permits – gotta have one, here’s how you get it.

21 Pro tips for your first thru-hike – This is a really fantastic and straightforward bit of advice on doing a thru-hike, love this piece.

Appalachian Trail (AT) Happiness: Snow Hiking Tips a quick piece with some links to resources about hiking in the snow.

Thru-hikers guide to the White Mountains – enough said, good info.

Maine AT club – Baxter State Park/Katahdin information

More Baxter/Kathadin info – The park’s site

Appalachian Trail and Ultralight Gear List – My favorite gear list written by Bruce “Buck” Nelson.  There are a lot of gear lists on the web, I just prefer this one for the focus on ultralight and the gear links.

Backpacker magazine – makes both lists because there is always a wealth of information to go through, great tips, gear reviews, etc…

Trail Journals – A site you can get lost in for a long time, a huge collection of archived and active trail journals being written by long-distance hikers

Backpacking Lightweight – great resources on traveling with a lighter load

Darwin on the Trail – A fellow hiker I met on my AT hike who now is hiking full-time, his YouTube site is full of good information, adventures and gear reviews.

How to hang a bear bag PCT style – for nights when there are no bear poles, the best and safest way to hang a bear bag

Rain kilt – my favorite piece of gear, works great, super light, way easier to put on than rain paints

Make your own rain kilt – for you crafty hiking types

Rev Kane on his first day on the Appalachian Trail

General Hiking

All Trails – this site is what I wish was, community driven, good information and reviews about hikes, you can up your membership and get better maps but the free access is awesome.

Hiking for her – A site dedicated specifically to issues women face while hiking

Section Hiker – great site with a lot of information and happily a handy index

American Hiking – a pretty general site with info about hiking possibilities, volunteer opportunities etc…

Backpacker magazine – makes both lists because there is always a wealth of information to go through, great tips, gear reviews, etc…

BackpackerTV – Dig YouTube, love hiking, where here’s nothing but videos about backpacking, how to’s, locations, travel journals anything you could want. Really dig this site, great videos, good quality, fast load speeds.

Appalachian Trail, hiking, happiness

White Blazes make me happy

 Gear Lists

Appalachian Trail Conservancy list – This is really just the very basics, if you are contemplating a section or thru-hike on the trail and you just don’t know where to begin this is a great spot.  However, if you’ve done a lot of hiking it’s probably only worth a quick scan.

Appalachian Trail Gear List – My favorite gear list written by Bruce “Buck” Nelson.  There are a lot of gear lists on the web, I just prefer this one for the focus on ultralight and the gear links to where he purchased each item.

Zach Davis’ list – Zach is the author of Appalachian Trials and did a guest post on the REI blog, I like the way he breaks down the list into essentials, almost essentials, etc…

Section Hike list – Here’s a nice list for a 3 week section hike.

Risky Business Gear Video – Here’s a YouTube link and good discussion in the comments.

Linthikes – An interesting ultra-light list

From Wander the Wild Blog – an updated list of what they “actually” ended up carrying on the AT

Andrew Skurka – A great list by Andrew for a 32 pound total weight

Hiking for Autism – Another list that lands in the mid-30 pound range’s – Video series on gear

One last set of links related to ultra-light gear tips.  I love these folks, some of the ideas are just nuts in my opinion, but in looking at these sites pre-trip I did learn a few ways to reduce weight and the sites really got me thinking about the difference between what I needed and wanted to carry.

201 Ultralight Tips – Absolutely awesome site but I don’t like the title of this piece, the tips are FANTASTIC but I wouldn’t consider a lot of them ultra-light tips but rather great tips on how to trim weight from your pack.  Don’t let the ultra-light in the title keep you from looking through this.’s – Tips for lightening your backpack.

Ultralight Backpacking Tips – A YouTube video with a good set of recommendations

Have a great hike and a happy day my friends! ~ Rev Kane

happiness, appalachian trail



5 Responses to Appalachian Trail & Hiking Resources

  1. Pingback: Appalachian Trail Happiness: Gear Lists | The Ministry of Happiness

  2. Pingback: Appalachian Trail Happiness: Thru-hike Food Recommendations & Recipes | The Ministry of Happiness

  3. Pingback: My Favorite Appalachian Trail Photos of 2015 | The Ministry of Happiness

  4. Pingback: Appalachian Trail Happiness: The Book | The Ministry of Happiness

  5. Pingback: My Best AT Posts from the Last Year | The Ministry of Happiness

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