Maps for the Appalachian Trail near Springer Mtn., GA

I received a text message from a friend: “My sister and I want to begin a hike at Springer Mountain in mid-July. Do you have maps we can borrow or recommend the best maps?”

My maps are in storage in Virginia while I work out in California! Besides, once you step on the Appalachian Trail, you’ll fall in love with it and want your own set of maps for fanning the flame of your new passion and recording your memories!  Here are my recommendations

MAPS

Maps are helpful for spatial orientation, road crossings, and for locating nearby towns and highway routes. They can also show topography, shelters, and points of interest along the way.  I also enjoy perusing a good map for bedtime reading! Here are suggestions for maps for the southern section of the Appalachian Trail:

The National Geographic Trails Illustrated Maps are excellent with detail and scope. A new series since I walked the AT has come out: the Appalachian Trail series (#1501-1513). 13 maps cover the entire trail.  Before this series, it took two maps to cover the trail in Georgia.  If you’re planning to walk trails in Georgia in addition to the AT, including the Benton MacKaye Trail, Brasstown Bald, and Bartram Trail, among others, you might prefer #777 and #778.

#1501 covers the southern 200 miles of the Trail.
http://www.natgeomaps.com/appalachian-trail-springer-mountain-to-davenport-gap-georgia-north-carolina-tennessee

#777 covers Springer Mountain part way through Georgia.
http://www.natgeomaps.com/springer-and-cohutta-mountains-chattahoochee-national-forest

#778 covers the north Georgia section
http://www.natgeomaps.com/brasstown-bald-chattooga-river-chattahoochee-and-sumter-national-forests

GUIDEBOOKS

Guidebooks are good companions for maps because they round out the information on the maps  with data points specific to the trail, distances between landmarks, shelters, and water sources. In addition, current guides also include details about trail towns, post offices, shuttle providers, gear vendors, and even trail profile guides.  Currently, there are two popular guides available. Both are updated annually and have dedicated followers who swear to the accuracy and helpfulness of the guide they chose.

The AT Guide  (“The AWOL Guide”)
http://www.theatguide.com/

Thruhikers Companion and other planning guides from the Appalachian Trail Conservancy
http://atctrailstore.org/official-a-t-guide-sets-1/

 

MOBILE PHONE APP

If you prefer a digital guide to the Trail, the Guthook Guide has become quite popular since its first release in 2012.  The app and the demo guide to the Approach Trail are free. In-app purchase of 9 sections gives hikers everything they need to navigate the entire 2,189.2 miles of the Appalachian Trail and 273 miles of Vermont’s Long Trail. Each section costs $8.95, with a bundle price for all the sections.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.highsierraattitude.atcomplete&hl=en

Katahdin Anniversary

June 27, 2016
Today is my nine-year anniversay of my first summit of Mt Katahdin, the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail, in Maine!

What a day that was! I was astounded at the arduous terrain of the mountain, surprised at the boulder climbing and the 10-hour trek to get up – and down!

Now I know that Mt Katahdin is in the top five most difficult parts of the trail, too! But, I’m so glad I did my thruhike  that way because I got the hard stuff out of the  way first!

I’ve gone back to climb it again – eight other times! If you haven’t watched my video of Mt Katahdin, watch it here!

Katahdin Sojourn

In joy,
Regina

Important Details

A dreaming Pacific Crest Trail hiker posed this question in a women’s hiking forum: “When & where will you start? how long have you been planning? Would you share some of your plans/knowlege… I’m so nervous I feel I will leave some important detail out.”
She’s touching on one of the Five Essentials in the Guiding Star for Radiant Hiking, and that’s TIMING. Timing is essential in many aspects of our fulfilling walks. When we consider our hike in our life, the timing in the seasons, the timing of each section, in our daily pace, and even in the timing of each step, we can fashion a walk that builds from the inside out, one that takes outer shape from our inner intention. Our hike becomes an expression of our purpose and our physical and spiritual rhythm.

My suggestion to her would be to sit quietly and imagine herself in rhythmic timing in all of these areas and listen to that inner conversation. Then, bring those answers into her plan with the trail. My belief is that this will lay a foundation for a radiantly fulfilling walk.

Winter Walk In Pennsylvania

Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail
January 2 – 22, 2014

What a lovely walk John and I had for 6 days in the snowy mountains of Pennsylvania! Enjoy this 5-minute slide show featuring Barbara Hotz singing “Wild Wind” and a few words of explanation from me! Highlights of this walk included:

  • Super Trail Angel help from my sister, Betsy!
  • Fireplaces with split wood in every shelter!
  • Beautiful snow starting the second day!
  • Crisp, cold, fresh water from mountain streams
  • Moderate walking on a well-marked trail

Please comment after you watch! Post your questions too!

 

Let’s Meet at the Next Trailhead

The journey that I’m on now has a name – Journey to the HeartLand – for its significance in my life. I thought that this one would be different than other trail walks I have done. Wouldn’t an off-trail journey be different than a month on the Benton MacKaye Trail or on the Appalachian Trail?

What I’m discovering is that this journey has the same essentials for success as a walk on a physical trail.

  • Know the trail – I’ve got the road map for our class topics
  • Consider the timing – Well, 7 a.m. might be a little early for some participants!
  • Love my gear – I’ve had technology challenges that I’m stepping through one at a time.
  • Have support – Thanks to my friends who are sharing their home, my partner, my sister, and the participants themselves for their understanding and flexibility while we get our journey underway.
  • Have tools for shifting emotional energy – Well, that’s what this journey is all about! What I’m teaching in this course are the exact tools I’m using to navigate the journey myself! Perfect!

During our first week, we’ve been looking at our “Stories”. Stories are those emotion-laden, repeating patterns that seem to happen over and over again in our lives. They usually have a consistent disempowering “story line”. In addition, our biggest Stories are ones we have been playing out unconsciously – until now! Now, we’re awake to their insidious repetition and we’re tired of their presence. We want to get rid of them, but don’t know how!!!
That’s what Journey to YOUR HeartLand is all about! We’re taking a loving and safe look at these stories and walking step-by-step into a New Story of vibrance, creativity, and fulfillment.

Here’s what journeyers are saying:

“Please find attached a brief summary of my story. Thank you for what you do!”

“Hello and thank you for responding to “my story”. I have rewritten it and feel a lot better. Thank you for the suggestions you made and I believe this journey is for me!”

“You make me smile! I just love you and don’t even know you!”

We’re only missing YOU!  You can jump in now and get the same results. It’s just like a walk on the Appalachian Trail. You can start anywhere on the path and be filled up with the wonders of that iconic trail!  “Hike your own hike” is a perfect saying for a journey to your heart as well as a trail walk.

Get the details here:

Journey to YOUR HeartLand: STORIES

What’s calling me to this journey is the chance for sharing my heart so much with you that all the self love, the claiming of my passion, the letting go of unnecessary things, relationships, and ways of being that it has taken to invent my life of adventure rubs off on you. It’s easy to go on walks myself or with my beloved hiking partner!
But, what I really want to do is entice you to look at your own limiting stories and love yourself in those stories enough to choose whether you want them or not. I want to be with you when you bravely touch into the buried feelings and let the tears flow to wash away that stuck energy. I want to walk with you as you step through the gateway of willingness to see that this might be happening for a higher purpose.

Why?

So you can feel the lightness, the joy, the inner glow, the rush of magic and miracles all around you that come from telling your story, feeling the feelings, switching off the energy flow to those old stories, noticing a new story, and integrating that into your body.

Why is that important?

Because then you can claim your own vibrant dream, your own fulfilling relationship, your own passionate purpose. And that’s what I really want for you!  And I believe I can guide you on that journey!
Here are the details of the journey:

Journey to YOUR HeartLand: STORIES

Not sure this is for you?

Do you recognize any of these stories in your life?

I don’t want to rehash the past or go deep into my feelings, just enjoy myself.
I’m overweight and not attractive.
Intimacy is hard for me.
I don’t like myself when I’m mean and angry. I shouldn’t be that way!
I feel lost in my life and nothing seems to be working.
My family doesn’t love me.
I yearn for more, yet force the taste out of my mouth in resignation and fear.
I feel uncomfortable in my own skin and don’t know how to cultivate true love for me.
I am surviving, but I want to thrive, yet I’m at a standstill, living half-heartedly.
I’ve birthed a baby and that was a most magical thing. Now, if I could only birth my own life!
I’m convincing myself to stay in a desolate relationship because I don’t know any other way and I surely don’t want to be alone!
At this stage of my life I just don’t want to change things!

In Journey to YOUR HeartLand: STORIES

We’ll take a look,
with ease and grace and lots of compassion
,
at how those stories play out in your life. Not to say they’re wrong or you’re wrong, or you’ve screwed up to have them.
No! We’ll look at them to acknowledge that we all have a story that gives us the chance to feel separate from our fulfillment, just because that’s what we humans do!
Then using some really simple tools that are actually fun to use, we’ll play around with New Stories that we might actually like better and try them out and see what happens!
Chances are, you’ll feel lighter and happier and more creative with your New Stories, which is why I love

Journey to YOUR HeartLand

In joy,
Regina

Here’s to you and YOUR Journey!
Drop me a line and tell me about it today!

Benton MacKaye Trail: Deep Creek Bridge

Deep Creek Crossing

It’s October, 2009. I’m standing on the north side of Deep Creek in the Smokies. “It’s not good to be here alone”, I thought. “It’s not safe here. I shouldn’t be doing this by myself. I should turn back. Is there another way?”

I’m at mile 44, three miles shy of the half way point in the Smokies section of the Benton MacKaye Trail I’m looking at my map, tracing a possible alternate route around the swollen torrent that is Deep  Creek. I’m considering scooting across the tipped log that’s interrupted by perpendicular poles. That’s what the bridge had become.

“What a surprise!” Last June, on my first BMT traverse, this had been a simple walk across a log bridge. Now, crossing this big creek required a strategic decision.

Continue reading

Benton MacKaye Trail Winter Thru-Hike Slide Show!

Regina, founder of Forgiveness Walks, completed the 300-mile Benton MacKaye Trail during a walk in January, 2013. Follow her journey, photographed by John Lemberg in slides and music.

Please comment below!

Take your own journey!
Walk into YOUR dream!
Let Regina and Forgiveness Walks inspire, train, and coach you to love yourself and your life just as you are, opening the gateway to shifting old beliefs and stories. As you do, vibrant energy, fulfilling relationships, and freedom from your past will fill your life.

Click the photo below to take your first steps.

Celebrate!

Click the photo to Walk into YOUR Dream!

Resourcefulness on the Trail

In this photo, I’m wearing my food-bag skirt!

My shorts had ripped and my rainpants were too hot. When backpacking, I don’t carry extra clothes, just one of each type, except socks. I cut the bottom seam of my nylon food bag, which turned out to be just the perfect size for a drawstring skirt. It’s made of silnylon, silicon nylon, so it’s waterproof. It was a good rain skirt too!

When have YOU been resourceful, using something right at hand to fill in for something that you didn’t have.

A hiker’s motto I like is:

 

“If you don’t have it, you don’t need it!”

Dressed for rain

I made a skirt from my food bag when my shorts ripped.