Registration for one of the Northeast’s most epic endurance hiking challenges – Pennsylvania’s Allegheny 100 Hiking Challenge – opens today, February 29, at noon.
The event date for the 2016 Allegheny 100 Hiking Challenge, also known as the A-100, is June 10-12, 2016.
The A-100 is held annually by the Allegheny National Forest Chapter of the North Country Trail Association. It’s an unsupported hiking challenge offering 100-, 75-, 50- and 25-mile options that must be completed within 50 hours.
The route features the beautiful scenery of the Allegheny National Forest. But while the scenery will be beautiful, this is not a challenge to be a taken lightly. The A-100 is not a race, but an individual challenge of stamina, determination and resilience. Being an unsupported hike, there are no first aid or water stations. Hikers are responsible for supplying their own food, drinks and equipment. And participants need to plan ahead in case they run into problems, as cell phone reception is very spotty along the trail.
The challenge covers a 100-mile stretch of the North Country National Scenic Trail in the Allegheny National Forest. Participants climb over rolling hills and pass through many beautiful stream valleys. For 2016, the hikers will travel north to south. The direction is changed every two years to give hikers the opportunity to complete all 100 miles of trail.
Organizers offer a variety of distances to make the challenge accessible for anyone, regardless of skill level, who wants to test themselves against the trail.
This year’s challenge will extend from the Pennsylvania Route 66 trailhead, between Marienville and Vowinckel, Pennsylvania to Pennsylvania Route 346 trailhead, near Willow Bay.
Pre-register to receive a membership to the North Country Trail Association, shuttle service to the start of the hike, and a T-shirt. Pre-registration ends May 15, 2016, or when 110 hikers have signed up. Cost will be $50 for non-members and $27 for members.
For insight into what it’s like to take on the A-100, plus tips on gear and training, YouTuber Ian Young has many helpful videos devoted to the challenge.