Travel

47 Hiking Terms Every New Backpacker Should Know

I’m not a whitewater kayaker, but I live with two of them, and dinner conversations can get so flooded with jargon that it makes my head swim. Trying to parse the lingo can feel alienating; so much so that it’s become a game for me to string together nonsensical slang just to pretend I’m part of the conversation.

Anyone who has been new to a sport or activity can relate. Learning the language of a subculture—especially in outdoor activities—can feel like as much of a hurdle as learning the activity itself. Hiking lingo is far from the most egregious (it’s just walking, after all), but beginners can still get tripped up by unfamiliar phrases. Get a handle on this terminology, and you’ll be able to hold your own around any campfire.

AT:
Short for “Appalachian Trail,” this abbreviation refers to the most iconic long trail in the nation, which runs over 2,000 miles between Georgia and Maine. Read more…

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