The A.T. Guide
- A Handbook for Hiking the Appalachian Trail

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The A.T. Guide
Weight of book (oz) 11.8 (Nobo) 8.6 (Sobo)
Size (inches) 5.25 x 8
Town Maps 80
Elevation Profile YES (0.35"/mile)
Landmarks (water sources, summits, roads, etc...) @ 2500
Pages 224
Southbound Edition YES
Loose-leaf Edition YES
GPS Coords for Trailheads @ 200
Distance to next shelter north & south To next 3 shelters
Blurbs about historic landmarks YES
Layout Alternating Spreads

There are *common* things for which you will use your guidebook.  Base your guidebook choice on how easy it is to do these things, because you will be doing them every day:

  • You pass a gravel road or a trail crossing and want to know where you are.  Maybe it’s an indication that you’ve gone past a tent site or spring that you were looking for.  The A.T. Guide has more landmarks like this than any other source.  With it, you’ll be much more likely to find out where you are.
  • You’d like go into town, for example Falls Village, to get a maildrop.  Falls Village is close, but the path is not straightforward.  The A.T. Guide has a map of the town, so it’s a simple matter. 
  • You want to know what kind of terrain is ahead.  The A.T. Guide has an elevation profile.  At a glance, you can see the ups and downs.
  • Another benefit of having the landmarks aligned with the profile is that the text is spaced proportional to the mileage.  Each data page in the book covers the same number of miles (20.2), so even without reading mileage numbers you can make a good guess at the mileage between landmarks.
  • You are in town and want to know what services there are.  Scan the text of each book and see how quickly you can find something, an outfitter for example.  In The A.T. Guide, services such as this will all be on a line of their own, preceded by an outfitter icon.  The business name is in bold.
  • You want to hike with just the pages you need.  The A.T. Guide is sold bound or loose-leaf, and every book sold from the website comes with a heavy-duty zip-lock bag.
  • You start your day at a shelter and want to hike 15-20 miles.  Will you finish near another shelter?  The average shelter-to-shelter distance is less than 10 miles. The A.T. Guide gives shelter-to-shelter mileages for the next three shelters.  
  • While on the trail and looking at the mileage data, you see a road crossing with a town nearby.  You want to find out if the town has something you need, so you flip to the “Town info” part of the book.   In The A.T. Guide, most town services are a page turn away.  Even so, every data entry with additional “town” info provides a page number to make is easier to find that info.  The “town” entries have corresponding mileage, so you can easily cross-reference back to the data page.

Even with the extra features, The A.T. Guide is ounces lighter than anything comparable.

The A.T. Guide makes it easier to do the look-ups that you’ll do hundreds of times.