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Author Topic: Backpacking Trip Using BT  (Read 5375 times)
Buckeye
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« on: August 21, 2011, 02:26:39 PM »

Folks, I am looking for some suggestions for a longer backpacking trip using all or part of the BT next spring.  My trips thus far have been mostly single night or long weekend affairs, to places like Shawnee, Vesuvius, and Big South Fork (longest mileage was 32+ in three days at BSF).  I want to do something longer, maybe four or five nights, in the sixty to ninety mile range, that doesn't require stealth camping or plopping down in a church yard.  Something more like a trip on the AT, where I can use primitive sites or camp as needed, LEGALLY, and that has water along the way (streams or what not).  Do we have a section of the BT that qualifies?  Heck, I would even take a fifty mile section.  Just want to pull off a longer trip within Ohio, that is NOT Shawnee, that is more like a "normal" backpacking experience.

Thanks in advance,
Buckeye
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atwalker
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« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2011, 09:34:02 PM »

Buckeye,  I sincerely wish you the best in your search for what you are looking for on the BT.  However, as I read Captain Blue's blog, it does not seem that there is such a place on the BT for what you are looking for.  I do sincerely wish you luck and hope you find it. 

I have recently moved down to Virginia and am only about 40 miles or so from the AT where I plan to do a lot of backpacking in the future.  Since I thru-hiked back in 1999 it is my love to be out on a trail where I can spend time with nature and camp where I please. 

I sincerely do wish the BT would offer such a place but for the past 20+ years it does not seem to be a priority and I sincerely doubt that it will ever happen even though you and several more are sincerely trying to make it more than a day hiking experience.   Even those that do hike it and stay overnight, it seems that they are in someones back yard, a church, commercial campground, or motel.  Even Captain
Blue spent very few nights in his tent and even then it was usually on private property. 

Anyway, good luck and if you are every down here in the Blue Ridge and wish to backpack for a week or so let me know.
Ed
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It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters in the end. -- Ursula K. LeGuin
Buckeye
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« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2011, 09:23:23 AM »

Hey Ed,

I was fairly certain that my inquiry might be a futile exercise, but thought I would ask anyway.  Perhaps there is still section out there I am not thinking of that will meet my requirements!

As for the AT, good relocation!  I am doing a long weekend in two weeks from Davenport to Hot Springs, hopefully getting some ideas for the BT, because we need a way to save long stretches of trail for backpackers to use (water sources, shelters, camp sites, etc.).

Buckeye
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« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2011, 10:30:33 AM »

I wonder if the new towpath sections in NW Ohio would satisfy your request.  I know several dozen miles (don't know to total) have been moved off road and on to refurbished towpath.  I don't know what the camping rules are, though.  Maybe talk with Rick and JimR this weekend.
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Couscous
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« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2011, 05:52:45 PM »

You could make a 143-mile loop using the Whipple and Road Fork sections..
Just take a PLB so we can recover your body.  Grin
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Captain Blue
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« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2011, 10:54:19 PM »

Buckeye - You could probably take a real nice ~50 mile backpacking trip from Point 14 in the Old Mans Cave section to Point 9 (US-50) in the Scioto Trail section. This area passes through some scenic areas including Hocking State Forest, Hocking Hills State Park, Tar Hollow State forest and private land. You could continue another 20 miles and take in more private land and Scioto Trail State Forest.

As for campsites ... if you did some map research and maybe did a scouting trip to talk to landowners (state forest, private land owners) ahead of time I think you would find plenty of legal camping areas. There are a number of campsites listed on the two maps. (Many people who camp along the AT don't do so legally. Many hikers don't obey the regulations that require a campsite to be a certain distance from the trail, a road or a water source.)

As for churches, chapels and cemeteries ... they do make for fun and scenic places to camp. Churches sometimes own the nicest property in an area. Some churches have a water faucet, picnic shelter and an outhouse. Church property is always kept mowed. Some churches are on high points with good views and other churches are on land along rivers and streams. I would not knock it unless you have tried it. (Staying at churches is popular on the AT as many churches operate hostels. You would be hard pressed to find someone who has hiked the whole AT and not stayed on church property at least once.)

Everybody has their own definition of what a "normal" backpacking experience is. Only you know what that is. There are many places on the AT that I would not consider a normal backpacking experience. For example the Great Smoky Mountain National Park (lots of regulations, lots of people, no tent camping) Shenandoah National Park (follows a road for ~100 miles, lots of civilization), parts of Pennsylvania (miles and miles of rocks on the trail) and the White Mountains National Forest (wicked climbs and wicked weather).

My advice is just go do it! The real pleasure of hiking on the Buckeye Trail is not finding what you expect. It is finding the unexpected.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2011, 11:03:13 PM by Captain Blue » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2013, 11:17:26 AM »

The NE Buckeye Trail makes it hard even to do a overnight hike.  I'm trying to break up a 40 mile hike over two days and camping permits are for groups only.  As an individual, I can't gain access.  I think it is a total joke to have a piece of nature preserved, set aside, and then sanction and strongly regulate it so nobody with more commited ambitions can enjoy an extended trip.
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