Leave the road far behind and come on a guided backpacking trip with A Walk in the Woods for a true wilderness experience.

Just starting out? Avoid the trials and pain of learning the skills of backpacking through the school of hard knocks. Before your trip, we will talk to you about your experience and expectations. We'll tell you what you can expect, what to bring, what not to bring, even how to pack it. And that's just the beginning. Your guide will help to make this wilderness experience as safe and fulfilling as possible. On your trip, you will learn wilderness and backpacking skills and all about the natural world. These trips are dedicated to building self reliance in each backpacker. Our groups are small enough to allow us to get to know each other, and to travel as a team, with confidence, trust, and humor while creating a feeling of ease in nature. Wilderness backpacking is the most rewarding way to experience a bit of real America. Because you do it on your own two feet, you'll bring back a dramatic sense of accomplishment that flows into your daily life.

 

Backpacking is suited to anybody who is healthy, reasonably fit, and open to the hands on experience of learning a new hobby.

Been backpacking for years? How about traveling with your own naturalist while learning more about the forest you love. You'll learn how to identify plants useful for food and medicine, how to cure a headache, what to do if lost in the woods, how to avoid getting struck by lightening during a thunderstorm, and everything you need to make your trips through the wilderness safer and more enjoyable. These hands on experiences are like learning about the brush strokes in a painting. When you emerge from your trip, you will truly see the forest for the trees, the plants, the mushrooms, the animals ....

 

Let A Walk in the Woods Customize a Backpacking Trip just for you, or join one of our Pre-Scheduled backpacking trips.
Customized Backpacking Trips
We will design a personalized adventure based on your abilities, experience and expectations. The process starts with a questionnaire about yourself, what you want to experience and what you want to take away with you. From this we will build an excursion tailored just for you and your group.

 

Pricing for Customized Backpacking Trips start at: $350. Additional charges apply for trips requiring transportation. Discounts available for parties of 2 or more.

Family Rate Special for those with children under 18 : up to four family members start at $800 per night. $100 for each additional person per night.

Questions? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Request a Customized Backpacking Trip Online

 

Pre-Scheduled Backpacking Trips
2016 Schedule

 

Rather join a group of others with common interests? Sign up for one of our Pre-Scheduled Backpacking Trips for 2016 below:
Title of Trip Backpacking 101: Everything you ever wanted to learn about backpacking, but were afraid to ask. Just like Samantha Brown did on the Travel Channel
Length/Price
Two Days One Night
$254 includes all backpacking gear*, meals and guide. $224 if you provide your own backpacking gear. Outing size restricted to 8 people total including guide.
Rating Moderate. For beginner and intermediate backpackers.
Upcoming Dates

March 19th - March 20th (Saturday - Sunday) - CLOSED
April 23rd - April 24th (Saturday - Sunday) - 1 SPOT LEFT
May 7th - 8th (Saturday - Sunday)
May 21st - 22nd (Saturday - Sunday)
June 18th - 19th (Saturday - Sunday)
July 16th - 17th (Saturday - Sunday)
August 6th - 7th (Saturday - Sunday)
September 3rd - 4th (Saturday - Sunday)
October 8th - 9th (Saturday - Sunday)
October 29th - 30th (Saturday - Sunday)
To reserve, please call (865) 436-8283 or reserve course online
Description

Turn that curiosity into knowledge with a one night trip into the woods. Learn everything about the exciting and challenging sport of backpacking while meeting other people. On this trip, you will learn all the steps needed to become a proficient backpacker, find out what to pack and not to pack, how to pack and how to wear your pack for the most comfort. You'll learn how to use the best gear and what to do in the event that things don't go as planned, if the weather changes or your gear doesn't work well. You'll learn how to identify wild plants, which ones are edible and poisonous, how to cure headaches and poison ivy, and how to survive in case of emergency. We'll start with a brief class on backpacking and apply it in real life.

Title of Trip Family Backpacking Adventure
Length/Price
Three Days Two Nights
Up to four family members $1,600.
Includes shared backpacking gear*, meals and guide.
$200 for each additional person.
Rating

Easy. For beginner and intermediate backpackers.

Upcoming Dates
March 25th - 27th (Friday - Sunday)
April 1st - 3rd (Friday - Sunday)
May 28th - 30th (Saturday - Monday)
June 10th - 12th (Friday - Sunday)
July 1st - 3rd (Friday - Sunday)
August 5th - 7th (Friday - Sunday)
October 8th - 10th (Saturday - Monday)
To reserve, please call (865) 436-8283 or reserve course online
Description Experience the enchantment of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on a three day/two night backpacking adventure. Designed for families with children ages 5 and up, this beautiful two night excursion into the backcountry is the perfect tool to unplug from the devices that infiltrate our every day and reconnect as a family. We'll carry everything we need comfortably on our backs as we take our time enjoying a beautiful hike through old growth forests, by pristine streams, pools and cascades. Along the way we will get our hands dirty playing in the earth, exploring mountain brooks looking for salamanders, tasting wild foods and soaking up the sights and sounds of mother nature. Our experienced naturalist guides will offer instruction on backpacking techniques, identification of native edible and medicinal plants and allow your family a chance to hone their skills in basic outdoor survival techniques. When you arrive at your home in the woods for the next two nights, your family will relax in front of a campfire and listen to stories of the Cherokee and Settlers. Enjoy a night hike while learning about the habits of nocturnal creatures. During the day, you may enjoy playing in a clear, cool mountain stream, exploring other nearby trails or simply enjoying the quiet of your campsite. Reconnect with nature through fun games designed to awaken enthusiasm in children, focus attention and begin a life long love of all that mother nature has to offer.
Title of Trip Mountain Mist LeConte Lodge Overnight Adventure
Length/Price
Two Days One Night
$369 or $349 With Cash Discount
Includes Lodge Bed, Dinner and Breakfast, Snacks, Lunch on the first Day and Transportation to and from the Trailheads.
Outing size restricted to 10 clients.
Rating Moderate to Strenuous.
Upcoming Dates

May 22nd - 23rd (Sunday - Monday) - TWO SPOTS OPENED!

July 4th - 5th (Monday - Tuesday) - SOLD OUT

September 1st - 2nd (Thursday - Friday) - NEW DATE

Call (865) 436-8283 or request adventure online

Description Make new friends as you enjoy a guided group hike up to the famous Mount LeConte Lodge for a memorable bucket list experience. Your guide will meet you at the Sugarlands Visitors Center where you will be shuttled to the Trillium Gap Trail. Enjoy an interpretive tour through a beautiful old growth forest, walk beneath a refreshing waterfall, experience giant moss covered trees, and explore the uniqueness of a Southern Appalachian Heath Bald, before arriving at the famous and historic lodge. After your check in, follow your guide as you explore the mountain top before heading back to the dining hall for a hearty, family style meal. Enjoy a quiet moment on your deck's rocking chair before heading up to view an awe inspiring sunset. Spend a moment in front of a warm fire in the lodge, playing games or stomping your feet to some local blue grass. Conditions permitting, experience the dawn's early light as you walk to Myrtle Point and enjoy what world travelers have said is one of the best sunrises they have ever experienced. After a delicious breakfast, your guided tour continues as you explore the wonders of a different trail down the mountain. You trip concludes with a shuttle back to your vehicle, as you say good byes to new friends.
Title of Trip Women in Wilderness
Length/Price
Three Days Two Nights
$469 includes all backpacking gear*, meals and guide.
$429 if you provide your own backpacking gear.
Outing size restricted to 8 people total including guide.
Rating Moderate. For beginner and intermediate backpackers.
Upcoming Dates
March 25th - 27th (Friday - Sunday) - CLOSED
April 15th - 17th (Friday - Sunday)
May 6th - 8th (Friday - Sunday)
May 28th - 30th (Saturday - Monday)
June 10th - 12th (Friday - Sunday)
July 8th - 10th (Friday - Sunday) - FULL
September 9th - 11th (Friday - Sunday)
September 23rd - 25th (Friday - Sunday)
October 7th - 9th (Friday - Sunday)
October 28th - 30th (Friday - Sunday)
To reserve, please call (865) 436-8283 or reserve course online
Description

Need a little time out from your daily life? Immerse yourself in the calming embrace of nature as your cares drop off like leaves in autumn. Leave your stress behind as you challenge yourself to an adventure. On these trips, you will learn the backpacking secrets of experienced guides, the proper gear to bring, the right way to wear a pack, unlock the mysteries of pain free long distance hiking and more. Along the way, learn about wild plants and their medicinal and edible uses, taste wild foods and teas, learn how to be safe in the wilderness, what to do if lost in the woods, and how to be comfortable while sleeping in the outdoors. This is a time to celebrate your body, to push your limits and discover your hidden strengths. But don't worry, we'll ease into the trip, taking plenty of time for photos and rest, and help you to rediscover your inner kid through games, journaling, laughter and camaraderie. Come to this prepared to make friends, learn about yourself and reconnect with nature.

Title of Trip Survival Smoky Mountains Ultimate Backpacking Adventure!
Length/Price
Three Days Two Nights
$669 includes all backpacking gear*, meals and two guides. $629 if you provide your own backpacking gear. Outing size restricted to 8 people total including one guide.
Rating

Strenuous. For fit beginners and intermediate backpackers.

 

Upcoming Dates
July 1st - 3rd (Friday - Sunday)
August 26th - 28th (Friday - Sunday)
September 9th – 11th (Friday - Sunday)
To reserve, please call (865) 436-8283 or reserve course online
Description On these two night high adventure trips, you will learn fire making skills, cooking over a fire, navigation, how to set up and comfortably sleep under a tarp, rope tying and deal with the mental challenges of a tough day in the backcountry. You will also learn the basics of non lethal bear aversion techniques, leave no trace, wilderness safety skills, how to identify edible plants and more. These adventure programs will leave you feeling challenged and ready to take on the adventure that is daily life in this modern world.
Title of Trip Smoky Mountain Backpacking Adventure
Length/Price
Three Days Two Nights
$469 includes all backpacking gear*, meals and guide.
$429 if you provide your own backpacking gear.
Outing size restricted to 8 people total including guide.
Rating Moderate. For beginner and intermediate backpackers.
Upcoming Dates
March 18th - 20th (Friday - Sunday) - CLOSED
April 8th - 10th (Friday - Sunday) - CLOSED
May 13th - 15th (Friday - Sunday) - 2 SPOTS AVAILABLE
June 17th - 19th (Friday - Sunday)
July 22nd - 24th (Friday - Sunday) - 1 SPOT OPEN
August 12th - 14th (Friday - Sunday)
September 3rd - 5th (Saturday - Monday)
October 14th - 16th (Friday - Sunday)
November 4th - 6th (Friday - Sunday)
To reserve, please call (865) 436-8283 or reserve course online
Description

Been backpacking for years, but are looking to hone your skills and learn more about nature? New to backpacking but want to learn while physically testing yourself? These two night trips are designed to challenge you while leaving you refreshed and ready for the "real world." Learn the backpacking secrets of experienced guides, the right way to wear a pack, how to unlock the mysteries of pain free long distance hiking, and more. Along the way, you will learn about plants and their uses, animals and their habits, how to travel safely through the wilderness, and what to do if things go wrong. These trips will take you deeper into the backcountry than any one night trip, truly allowing you to get away from the stresses of everyday life. Explore old growth forests, pristine streams, incredible history, a sea of mountains and plants found only here and nowhere else on earth. We may even spot the Smoky Mountain icon, the black bear. Caution, backpacking side effects include: feeling awkward without a backpack, self confidence and a hunger to explore more wilderness!

 

Title of Trip Great Smoky Mountains Backpack – Appalachian Trail through REI Adventures
Length/Price
Four Days Three Nights
$749 REI Member
$824 Non-member
Outing size restricted to 6 clients and 2 guides.
Rating

This trip is rated Vigorous (4) as we plan to hike for 6-10 hours per day most days on steep, rocky, sometimes exposed terrain, gaining and/or losing up to just over 3,000 feet in elevation some days.

Upcoming Dates
June 2nd - 5th (Thursday - Sunday)
June 9th - 12th (Thursday - Sunday) - FULL
June 6th - 6th (Monday - Thursday) - New Date
June 16th – June 19th (Thursday - Sunday) - FULL
June 20nd– June 23rd (Monday - Thursday) - FULL
June 23rd – June 26th (Thursday - Sunday) - FULL
June 27th - 30th (Monday - Thursday) - New Date
July 1nd - 4th (Friday - Monday) - FULL
July 7th - 10th (Thursday - Sunday) - FULL
July 14th - 17th (Thursday - Sunday)
July 21st - 24th (Thursday - Sunday)
July 28th - 31st (Thursday - Sunday)
August 4th - 7th (Thursday - Sunday) - FULL
August 11th - 14th (Thursday - Sunday) - FULL
August 18th - 21st (Thursday - Sunday)
August 25th - 28th (Thursday - Sunday)
September 2nd – 5th (Friday - Monday) - FULL
September 4th – 7th (Sunday - Wednesday)
September 8th – 11th (Thursday - Sunday)
September 11th – 14th (Sunday - Wednesday)
September 15th – 18th (Thursday - Sunday)
September 18th – 21st (Sunday - Wednesday)
September 25th - 28th (Sunday - Wednesday)
October 2nd – 5th (Sunday - Wednesday)
October 9th – 12th (Sunday - Wednesday)
October 16th– 19th (Sunday - Wednesday)
October 19th - 22nd (Wednesday - Saturday) - New Date
October 23rd - 26th (Sunday - Wednesday)
October 30th - November 2nd (Sunday - Wednesday)
November 3rd - 6th (Thursday - Sunday)
Description The Appalachian Trail through the Great Smoky Mountains offers fantastic hiking and expansive mountain views.  We backpack from one primitive shelter to the next on this short section of a classic route, where hikers can expect an authentic taste of the Appalachian Trail thru-hiker life. Our experienced guides will offer instruction for those looking to hone their skills in survival techniques, backpacking basics and learn about native plants and their uses. This is a REI Adventures trip with ground operations provided by A Walk in the Woods.

Please see REI Adventures for more details and to book.

Title of Trip Winter Wonderland Backpacking 101
Length/Price
Two Days One Night
$275 includes all backpacking gear*, meals and guide.
$250 if you provide your own backpacking gear.
Outing size restricted to 8 people total including guide.
Rating Moderate. For beginner and intermediate backpackers.
Upcoming Dates
February 20th - 21st (Saturday - Sunday)
To reserve, please call (865) 436-8283 or reserve course online
Description

Learn everything you need to know about safely enjoying the sport of winter backpacking as you experience the solitude of the Smokies in winter. You will increase your confidence as you enter a different world. During these trips we will have greater opportunities to view wildlife, learn animal tracking, explore homestead sites normally hidden in the thick foliage, and encounter the Park during the quiet season.  Our guides will teach you the tricks to staying warm, dry and comfortable on cold winter nights in the backcountry. Learn how to make a fire even in a wet environment, basic survival skills, how to prevent hypothermia and more, all designed to help you gain the expertise to backpack in any weather!

 

* Please Note : Trekking Poles are an additional $7 per person.

We also offer Pre-Scheduled Trips exclusively for Women. Please visit our Women in the Wilderness page for more information.

Spaces are limited. Please call: 865-436-8283 or e-mail for more information.

A Walk in the Woods is starting our 18th year of business. In that time we have safely helped over 73,500 people enjoy the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

We are permitted through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and insured. We are certified in Wilderness First Responder, Professional Level CPR and Non-Lethal Aversive Bear Conditioning.

 

 

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