The Appalachian Trail truly has mythic status and for many of us, hiking it is a dream. But then we look at the reality of it and find the prospect of carrying a 40-50 pound pack on our back and sleeping on the ground rather daunting. Solution? Slackpacking! We cover the same distance as backpackers, but at the end of the day we return to a comfortable lodging with beds and hot showers. This section of the AT has a wide variety of terrain, with roots, rocks, steep climbs and incredible views. We end the trip by summiting Mt. Greylock, the highest mountain in Massachusetts.
Hiking from 8 to 15 miles a day (see the itinerary for daily mileage) with one 3,000-foot ascent, particularly on a trail with many rocks, roots, and muddy sections – even if the terrain is flatter than most sections of the AT – requires being in excellent physical condition and prior hiking experience. If you need a down day, you can always choose to stay at the rental house and explore the town. This trip is rated 5 and requires a high degree of fitness. Adding some specific conditioning such as strength training, endurance training, and longer aerobic workouts is suggested.