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[at-l] Itinerary for itinerant, a few ideas. . .

    Ginny Owen was right on the mark; your starting speed/mileage 
expectations are perhaps a bit ambitious.  Whatever your beginning pace, 
tho, it's always easier if you're packing food in 3/4 day  units as opposed 
to leaving a town with a week's worth of weight. Here are a few ideas that 
came to mind after looking at your list:

    Neel's Gap is right on the Trail, literally.  You can get limited 
re-supply there, but selection is somewhat limited, and there'll have been 
LOTS of folks right ahead of you; what you want might be out of stock when 
you pass thru.  I'd send a small maildrop here to get you to Hiawassee.

    Ditto, the Nantahala Outdoor Center, 134 miles from Springer.  A small 
drop here will see you to Fontana Dam.

    You mentioned Dennis Cove.  I'd send a small drop direct to Kincora 
Hostel, but if you're planning on staying there, which you should, you might 
not need a maildrop---Bob the owner does daily shuttles to a big supermarket 
where you could get anything you need supply-wise to see you thru to 

    I'd suggest you send a small drop to Port Clinton, PA.   It's one of 
those rare places where you get easily get your mail (the P.O. is on the 
Trail) but there's NO place nearby to get food.  Unless you plan on hitching 
a good ways, or unless you luck out and discover there's someone there with 
a car who can shuttle you to the market, a maildrop here is probably a good 

    You don't have any drops listed between Bear Mtn. and Bennington.  You 
might want to think about a small drop on top of Mt. Greylock, especially if 
you're not planning to go into North Adams or Williamstown to shop.  A drop 
at Bascom Lodge atop Greylock will save you carrying a ton of weight up a 
VERY big hill; folks planning maildrops at Cheshire or Dalton should keep 
this in mind.  Why haul seven pounds of stuff up the mountain when you can 
wait a day and have it waiting for you at the top?  A Greylock drop would 
easily see you to Bennington.

    I'd consider adding a drop at Andover, Maine.  You'll almost certainly 
be going in there anyway, as I DON'T suggest you try to pack one load of 
supplies from Gorham to Rangeley.  That's a very tough stretch, and if you 
can break your food weight into two chunks, you'll be glad you did.

    I'd consider a drop in Caratunk, as  the P.O. is just .2 off the Trail.  
The general store will most likely be closed, so don't plan on buying food 
there; if you stay with Steve Longley the ferryman (a great guy) he'll 
probably be able to shuttle you to a store.  But a maildrop is probably a 
better idea, and it'll make the Rangeley to Monson run a whole lot easier 
for you.

    All for now, otherwise you're lookin' good.  Best of luck with final 
planning and prep.

    Whoops.   Forgot one thing.  If you do decide to send a drop to Neels or 
the NOC, make sure you sent it priority mail, not regular post.  You're 
kinda getting short on time, and regular mail/parcel post can sometimes take 
10 days to 2 weeks.  If there's ever any question, ALWAYS go prioroty mail; 
the extra expense is minimal.

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