2 forum posts
My boyfriend and I are planning a 3-4 day section-hike from USFS 42 to Neel Gap. We have already completed the 8.8-mile access trail to Springer Mountain from Amicalola Falls State Park and the 0.9 miles down from the summit to the intersection of 42 this past Sept. We are planning to drive down to Neel Gap from Knoxville, park the car there, shuttle to our starting point at USFS 42, and hike back to the car in mid-June. My question is: judging by our normal mileage (hiking the access trail and other w/ packs on and full) of 1 - 1.5 mph, will we be able to hike the 30.7 miles to Neel Gap at that rate in 3 - 4 days or should we go to Woody Gap 20.1 miles away? I am a fairly experienced hiker and backpacker but I have knee problems (well, my left knee isn't great... I have a metal pin in it holding it together but I still do a ton of physical activity because I've found that it helps with the pain to keep active) so from all you AT-experienced hikers, I need to know about the terrain involved here. Is there a lot of rocks/roots in this area or just what's to be expected or is there a lot of downhill? What am I looking at here? Because I have heard some horror stories about this part of the trail. I would like to get some of the AT knocked out but looking at road access and parking access to the trail, I'm afraid its either 20.1 or the 30.7 miles one or the other unless you guys know of another access that I can park my car at. If so, please enlighten me to it. Thank you in advance for your advice.