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Re: [at-l] Incomplete thru hikes


I can't give you an exact breakdown, but I spent about $500 a month, which
included some motel stays in town, some restaurant dinners, some gear
purchases, and groceries. It doesn't count what I bought before the hike
and sent as maildrop packages to myself. (I got a maildrop about every
other week, with a week's worth of supplies in it, which cut down some on
my grocery bill during the hike.) I think it could be done for less, by
someone who did a better job of stockpiling gear and who didn't go to town
much, but it would be pretty spartan. Personally, I wouldn't want to do all
my food by maildrop, because my tastes changed during the hike, and I was
glad to get "breaks" in between the boring maildrop food in which I could
change the menu. I am not a big beer drinker or "green blazer," so my party
expenses were less than some folks'. But I did splurge several times,
getting single motel rooms and buying little luxuries for myself, which
probably made up for it.

My experience was that some of the people who tried to do it on a
shoestring found that they couldn't stand the restrictions. This was
particularly true for some of the college-age hikers. One guy comes to
mind: he came into Franklin, NC, with only $500 cash left. He spent it all
on dope, pizza, beer, and hotel rooms, and got off the trail at Wesser, a
week or so later. He might have been able to nurse that $500 to Harpers
Ferry, or beyond, but it wouldn't have been any fun for him. So he had a
wild final week, left the trail, and said he'd try again another year. That
same experience, to varying degrees, was pretty common among some of the
younger hikers.

In retrospect, I think $500 per month was a reasonable figure, allowing me
some fun (but not too much), and I'd have done a better job of making the
food in my maildrops more varied and interesting.

--Rhymin' Worm (GA>ME '97)

>If this question isn't getting personal, how much didn't the thru hikers
>spend to do an end to end? Could you sort the amount spent on the trail
>(mail drops, town visits, etc) from the cost of equipment.  Is the old
>dollar per miles rule out dated?
>In retrospect, would you spend the same, more or less? thx,   Hopeful
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