Deepen your backpacking know-how with plenty of advice from hiking experts. If you’re carefully considering a thru-hike as your next big adventure, or if you’re scheming about how to section-hike the Trail in weekend jaunts, then these sessions are for you!
10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Trip Planning, Logistics, and Navigation.
Do you wonder how, exactly, to start planning your thousand-mile journey? If you feel a little confused, you’re not alone. The good news is there is a wealth of resources and IATA staff is eager to demystify them. You’ll learn the ins and outs of the interactive map including Trail conditions, as well as, the helpful details embedded in the Mammoth Tracks app. You’ll get the inside scoop about how to connect with chapter leaders; how to use the Thousand-Miler spreadsheet; the nitty-gritty of resupply, shuttles, and trail angels; and how to use social media to network with other hikers.
11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. What’s Inside Your Pack?
So you have your backpack loaded with all the “necessary” items for your next backpacking trip. Still think you might be carrying too much? Join Sarah Mayer, REI Outdoor School Instructor, and learn how to cut weight, carry the essentials, and tailor your gear to best suit your needs. In this hands-on class, bring in your personal pack and gear and we will go through the items you take with you when backpacking and do a group “shake-down” on gear. You will receive the small group attention you need to really perfect your packing system.
12:15 – 1:15 Buffet Lunch (included)
1:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. Thousand-Miler Wannabe’s Hacks for Completing the Trail
Accomplished segment hikers will share their best practices that allowed them to complete the Trail in fine style. For example, when is the best time to do the connecting routes (road walks); how they used shuttles or bicycles to get from point A to point B and back again; How to locate a hiking buddy; and even how to Leave No Trace. You’ll leave this session with a usable hack or two for your own adventure.
3:00 p.m. – 4:15 p.m. Hikers’ Forum – Wisdom from the Trail.
Wondering what the chances are of meeting a bear, what cowboy camping entails, or how people survive heat and ticks on their way to the coveted 1,000-miler status? This session is your chance to hear crazy, make-you-want-to-hike-the-trail stories of those who’ve made the journey. Be inspired, be informed, and be entertained by the stories and fresh perspective of those who most recently completed their Thousand-Mile journey.
Investment: $50.00 if attending the Long-Distance Hiking Seminar.