I've been trying to up my mileage on the trail. When I started hiking two years ago with my 60 lb. pack, I could hike maybe five miles tops. Gradually I worked my way up to 7.5 miles. After numerous gear purchases like an HG CF tarp, HG Phoenix/Burrow, and GoLite Jam 50L, i was able to get up to ten miles a day.
This weekend I set out in the Pine Barrens to shatter my previous record for miles hiked in two days. My goal was to hike 26 miles in two days. I know this is paltry mileage compared to Fronkey and others, but I got to take one step at a time!
I got to Batsto at 2:45 pm and hiked 14 miles (with detours) to Batona in 4 hours, averaging 3.5 miles per hour. I took zero breaks, and never took my pack off. All my snacks were in my Ribz pack so I snacked as I walked.
On the trip back, I was planning to hike back to Batsto on the Batona Trail, but my legs were feeling it. SilentOrpheus offered me a ride to Atsion Lake, so I decided to hike the Mullica River Trail, 9.5 miles back to my car at Batsto Village. Of course, I got lost on a couple of occasions, and ended up hiking 10 miles.
Nevertheless, 24 miles in two days is a new record for me, at least intentionally. I've hiked more mileage getting lost, but this is the first time I actually intended to hike such a distance.
The hamstrings were barking, but a soak in the jacuzzi and a couple of aspirin later and I feel right as rain. Looking forward to hiking the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon this weekend, where I hope to talk Perrito into hiking 33 miles in two days, which will be a new personal best.
I got a small blister on the inside of my heel, but applied moleskin and kept on trucking. After the PA Grand Canyon, I'm taking on the entire 53 miles of the Batona Trail this fall, in three days. I think I'm ready.