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Thru-Hiking vs. Section Hiking

Aaron Zagrodnick

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Aaron Zagrodnick

For many long-distance hiking enthusiasts, whether aspiring novices or seasoned triple-crowners, there comes a time when one needs to decide between attempting a full thru-hike or a shorter, but still ambitious section hike. For the purposes of this article, I’m defining a “thru-hike” as a hike of the Appalachian, Pacific Crest, or Continental Divide Trail completed in one season. There are other ways it could be defined, and other trails to be hiked, but these three are arguably the most popular and iconic, with a strong culture of thru-hiking. Thru-hikes can be appealing, but section hikes are often more practical in several ways. In this article, I’ll give an idea of my own experience with both, and attempt to offer some perspective for anyone deciding on their own itinerary…

Adrienne Marshall takes a look at key differences, along with pros and cons of section hiking vs. thru-hiking one of our long trails. Check out the full article below in Issue 21:

Thru-hike or Section Hike?

Thru-hiking and Section Hiking

Issue 21 Page 1

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