Homer's Travels: Appalachian Trail: A Big Step Forward

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Appalachian Trail: A Big Step Forward

Today I took a step forward for my Appalachian Trail (AT) adventure.  I bought an airline ticket and booked a hotel near the start.

Buying the ticket is always a big step for me. Those non-refundable tickets add a little motivation.  I remember when I bought my tickets for my first Camino I felt like I was jumping off a cliff. This time the cost is relatively minor because I used money that I already had spent.  My ticket to Montreal last November was never used but, when you cancel a non-refundable ticket, the airline gives you a credit for a year.  I used this credit to buy mi one way ticket to Atlanta, Georgia.  This still feels like a big marker on my way to the AT.

I followed this up with a hotel reservation in the town of Dahlonega, GA.  My original plan was to have a single night in Dahlonega.  Going over my packing list I realized I could not take my camp stove fuel on the airplane (I already was aware that I couldn't take my bear spray).  This prompted me to stretch my stay in Dahlonega to two nights.  The hotel is only 0.6 miles (1 km) from an outfitter where I can buy camp stove fuel and, possibly, bear spray.  This extra day will be for picking up these last minute supplies and packing/re-packing my backpack.

The last thing I will need to do is schedule shuttle service from the Atlanta airport (actually the North Springs commuter train station) to my hotel and a second shuttle to pick me up at my hotel and drop me off at Amicalola Falls state park where I will start my AT hike.

Only two months to go ... and one of those is the shortest month.  Time to start acting squirrely!

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