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[at-l] PA to ME



Concerning your question about hiking from Pennsylvania to Maine, I can onl=
y answer from my own experience this year during May, and then later in Jul=
y/August.

I have always done my long distance section hikes in May, at least from Spr=
inger, GA to Port Clinton, PA.  However, when I started from Port Clinton i=
n May this year I found the trail to be vacant, cold, and wet.  Besides tha=
t, I had stomach problems which necessitated that I return home and try aga=
in later.  The hike in July/August was ideal.  I covered the last 50 miles =
of PA and on through New Jersey, New York, and Connecticutt, and to Great B=
arrington, MA in the three weeks from July 15th to Aug. 4th.  I was so than=
kful that I didn't have to climb out of Lehigh Gap over slippery rocks in t=
he cold and rain.  There was a greater problem with water availability duri=
ng that time frame, but trail angels came to the rescue by leaving water at=
 road junctions along the way.

You can check my comments from my hike this year on my trail journal for th=
at section at:  http://www.oc.edu/staff/phil.heffington/ATIndex02.htm

I'm not a winter hiker.  I just don't like the hastle of carrying clothes f=
or both cold and warm weather (think cold =3D more clothes/weight and heat =
=3D less clothes/weight), and I don't like having to make the transition fr=
om warm sleeping bag to cold hiking.  Also, being from Oklahoma, I chuckle =
when I hear the northeasterners talk about the "heat".  They think anything=
 over 85=BA is the Sahara Desert.  We don't think spring has arrived in Okl=
ahoma until we have at least one day of 85=BA weather.  A couple in Connect=
icutt this year made comments to me about the heat, which I checked on my p=
ack thermometer as being in the high 70's.  Personally, I think July/August=
 from PA to ME would be ideal.  You are going to find a prolific number of =
mosquitoes along that section during July/August, but at least it is not th=
e worst of the black fly season.

I agree with the others about the time you are scheduling for this section.=
  The distance from Port Clinton, PA to Katahdin, ME is approximately 970 m=
iles.  If you averaged 15 miles per day (a very optimistic goal, considerin=
g the Whites in New Hampshire) it would still take you 65 days.  I would su=
ggest you take a more leisurely pace and enjoy it more.  I haven't been thr=
ough the Whites yet, but I'm certainly not planning on major daily mileage =
through that section.