Solo Section Hiking

Discussion in 'Backpacking' started by UAHiker, Jun 1, 2018.

  1. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    as a solo hiker for a while now i've been limiting myself to doing loops just because i start and end at the same place. i'm running out of loop trails and have been seriously wanting to do some sections but the logistics of either getting back to my car or getting to the trail head has been a problem. i've thought about taxi's but seems kinda expensive, doubt uber is going anywhere i want to go.... any other thoughts? anything worked for you?
     
  2. rk_az

    rk_az Wandering Supporter

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    If you have a friend who wants to do the same section in the opposite direction, you could exchange keys in the middle...or exchange spare keys in advance.
     
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  3. martin9700

    martin9700 Tracker

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    LOL, or you could drop their car off at the exit point and then both drive to the entry point and hike together. Unless you don't really like them that much ;)
     
  4. CivilizationDropout

    CivilizationDropout -MOA #17- Supporter Bushclass I

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    Or it's really an epic haul with tandem trail camp bull session in the middle.. :D
     
  5. rk_az

    rk_az Wandering Supporter

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    Only one decision...who's toting in the Fireball?
     
  6. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    that's my problem, no friends who want to go or are reliable enough to go or would i think of asking... lol
     
  7. rk_az

    rk_az Wandering Supporter

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    I figured as much, but thought I would throw the idea out there anyway... :)
     
  8. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

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    I know there are some places that offer shuttle serivse along major trail systems. It might get costly but if you want to do something aside from a loop or an out and back that's one option. Another option is to hitch. I've not personally hitched but I've given a hiker a ride before personally.

    I want to start doing more loops in the future. Hopefully longer sections at some point in the future which I'll be looking to solve the same issue.
     
  9. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    thanks :)

    so far i've found one with a shuttle that i plan on doing later this year. i'm a fan of the NCT and there's hug sections in MI within a few hours from me so was hoping to do more of the NCT. IN is kinda lacking in loop trails
     
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  10. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

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    Yeah that's the one part where I'm lucky I have two large national forests within a few hours of me and the longest stretch of the AT in a single state. We have quite a few loops available to hike, but a lot of hiking trails aren't well documented if at all. Funny thing is I still complain about not being close enough to the mountains.
     
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  11. bosque bob

    bosque bob Scout

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    Ride boards at the co op or university an option? May require a bit of planning for a return trip but . . .
     
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  12. perrymk

    perrymk Supporter Supporter

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    I section day hiked the Florida Trail solo. I have a Prodeco folding electric bicycle that fits inside my Chevy Sonic hatchback. I parked at one trail access point, pedaled to another trail access point along roads, then hiked back to my car along the Florida trail. The electric bicycle allowed me to cover 20 miles with the same effort and time as a I would cover 8 miles with a non-electric bicycle. Most of my e-bike shuttles were in the 15-20 mile range with the longest being 28 miles IIRC. I only hired 3 car shuttles during my hike of the Florida Trail (distances too long).
     
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  13. rk_az

    rk_az Wandering Supporter

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    Someday, self-driving cars may solve the problem. ;)
     
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  14. Zaveral

    Zaveral Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Hitch hiking! My friends have done hikes and gotten an impromptu ride back. I have even met them at the trail head when i was going out for trail maintenance in the area.

    What I have done in the past when there was a section of river I wanted to canoe but instead of doing an up and back paddle, I would stash my canoe in the woods at the put-in and drive my truck to the take out. Then I would ride my bicycle back to the put-in, stash it and retrieve the canoe and paddle down to the truck. I would pickup my bike on the way out. It's a lot of shuffling but you gotta do what you gotta do.

    Also I used to make my own bushwhacking loops in the National Forests and Wilderness areas. It makes for good nav practice too!

    Each method takes some planning tho.
     
  15. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    never hitch hiked but why not! I also like creating your own loop!
     
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  16. SuburbanBarbarian

    SuburbanBarbarian Supporter Supporter

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    I recently had a buddy tell me that there are spots in Manistee NF where you can rent canoes for a one-way paddle and hike back to your car. I haven't gotten to look into that any further, but it's something I plan to investigate and if I learn anything I'll post it up here. I think the NCT runs close enough to the Manistee River that you might be able to make something like that work.

    Keep us updated as you investigate this. I've been hoping to head up to that same area, and even with a hiking buddy it seems silly to split up into separate cars for a 4 hr drive.
     
  17. Bitterroot Native

    Bitterroot Native Indigenous Skills Junkie

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    This ^! Don't limit yourself to only established trails :dblthumb:
     
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  18. Pinelogcreek

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    Check the web for dedicated websites and clubs that maintain the trails many will have info on shuttles or transportation.
     
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  19. ra2bach

    ra2bach Bushmaster

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    sectioning is a great way to see places and trails you normally wouldn't be able to due to schedule, etc.. I've done several sections of the southern end of the AT and also the Pinhoti Trail in Alabama and I have always been able to find a way back to my vehicle whether a recognized shuttle driver, Uber, or hitchhiking...

    I prefer to travel solo but a well-vetted acquaintance or a friend can be enjoyable if you don't make too many demands on them. for instance, I met someone on the internet and we agreed to meet up in Damascus, VA and share a shuttle to Roan Mtn, TN and then hike the approx 100 miles back to where we left our cars.

    my agreement was that we should try to end our day, and maybe meet for rest/lunch, in the same location but we could start each day on our own schedule and hike alone.

    that worked out fairly well until my companion decided he'd had enough and bugged out on me after 5 days. I actually preferred to finish the trail completely by myself as my companion wasn't very good company and my car would be waiting for me at my destination.

    I'm waiting for my final 1 year medical clearance from my pulmonary embolism in September, and then my subsequent heart attack in October. at that point, I'll be hiking a 130 mile section of the AT that runs through the Shenandoah Natl Forest and I'd be happy to have 1 (maybe 2) people join me under the conditions I outlined above...
     
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  20. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

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    Let me know when you go, I won't be able to pull a 130 mile section, but the south gate is about 3 hours from where I live and I enjoy hiking in Shenandoah. My hike over the weekend was just south of there. I hope to be able to do sections if not a through some day, but family, work, school and other adult things limit my time.
     
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  21. ra2bach

    ra2bach Bushmaster

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    I'd definitely enjoy meeting you and share a fire at the trail head, if not some miles on the trail. Ill let you know with plenty of warning when I'm planning on this. I'd like it to coincide (either right after or maybe before) with the TN/NC get-together that has been in the discussion lately. maybe @Tennessee has some input on that... :54:

    I don't want to go before I'm cleared by my doctors. it will be 1 year for my Pulmonary Embolism on September 1, and my heart attack will be October 15. I'm hoping that won't be too late in the season, I hate hiking with a lot of leaf litter on the trail. I wouldn't mind going just when some color is starting in the leaves though...
     
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