Plan ahead with this indispensable set of Appalachian Trail planning materials ideal for both thru-hikers and long-distance section-hikers. Save 10% off individual prices by purchasing the Starter Pack!
Appalachian Trail Data Book:
Essential for A.T. hiking and planning and the over-all best buy in the Ultimate A.T. Store; an indispensable summary of guidebook basics since 1977.
This pocket-sized, paperback handbook is a consolidation of the basic information from all 11 official Appalachian Trail Guidebooks, into a lightweight table of distances between major A.T. shelters, road crossings, and features. The Data Book is divided according to the guidebook volumes and updated each year to account for relocations, new or removed shelters, and other changes. It is also keyed to maps from the official Appalachian Trail Guide Sets. Batteries not required.
From the back cover:
“…making the Data book an essential source for any Appalachian Trail hiker, whether out for the day or for the long haul of walking from Georgia to Maine in a single journey."
…The mileage information (with elevations for major landmarks) is keyed to both the official A.T. maps and to the guidebook sections – in a state-by-state, at-a-glance format. Shelters, campsites, water sources, road crossings, supply source, off-trail lodging, eateries, and post offices are all easy to spot in the listings. Whatever distance (or direction) you are walking on the legendary “A.T.” this is your easiest way to see where you are…compared to where you want to go”
Compiled since 1983 by Daniel D. Chazin of Teaneck, N.J., a volunteer with the N.Y.-N.J. Trail Conference. Fortieth Edition, 2017.
Appalachian Trail Thru-Hiker’s Companion:
The longtime champion of thru-hiking guides for 25 years! The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) and the Appalachian Long Distance Hikers Association (ALDHA) join their volunteer forces to produce the official guide especially designed for potential thru-hikers who want the basic information for a five- to six-month trek in the woods, at a reasonable price, but also want the adventure of finding out the extras for themselves. With professionally crafted elevation profiles, new maps, and redesigned tables for quick, at-a-glance planning. Updated each year by hikers volunteers with the latest Trail-town services, mileage, relocation, and shelter information.
Edited by Robert "Sly" Sylvester, with research by more than three dozen thru-hiker volunteers in 14 states, backed by the first-hand information of the Trail's volunteer and staff maintainers and managers. Still the only such guide written by volunteers for which all the proceeds are returned to the Trail by these two nonprofits!
Twenty-fifth edition, 2017.
Appalachian Trail Thru-Hike Planner:
Essential reference for any hikers in the planning phase of a thru-hike or long-distance section-hike, based on experiences of dozens of thru-hikers and observations by staff and volunteers. This 8.5” x 11” paperback planner provides valuable information including sample schedules, average temperatures and precipitation by location, packing tips, as well as information on resupplies and health and safety. In addition, the workbook offers rip-out-pages for calendars, budgets, resupply itinerary, and checklists for food and gear
Food, equipment, money, weather, shelters, distances to towns - it's all covered.
Fifth edition. 2015.
Red Baron (Submitted on Aug 27th 2018)
The "Thru-Hiker Planner" has great info like average temperatures and weather conditions throughout the trail.... and a bunch of helpful tips. I think this is more designed for someone who has never done a long distance hike before, but I still found it to be very useful.
"Thru-Hikers Companion" is amazing. Cross-Section-Elevation maps with mile count, shelters, road crossings, and water sources listed. Also has maps of local towns to give you an idea of where to resupply, get a drink, or find some real 'non-dehydrated' food. Even has info about landmarks and historical info on different places. I carry this one with me on the trail, weighs 11.6 ounces.
"Data Book" is ideal for the backpacker who measures each piece of equipment in grams... Its essentially the "Thru-Hikers Companion" compressed down to just the basics. Miles, shelter locations, water sources, road crossings. No elevation or town maps, just a long spreadsheet like list of the important data.
Unless you're a section hiker who is carrying all your food for the trip and doesn't plan on stopping to resupply..... I would strongly recommend bringing either the Companion or Databook with you.
Kelly (Submitted on Mar 26th 2018)
Using the 2018 Starter Pack as just one source and a basis for planning my future AT Thru-Hike.
The Companion is just that - compact, detailed, and small enough to be carried in your pack. Additionally, the Planner provides lots of other 'trail details', maps, worksheets and checklists.