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What are PUDS (Pointless Ups and Downs)?

What are PUDS?

PUDS, in any other case often called pointless ups and downs, are a frequent subject of dialog amongst hikers and backpackers, up there with blisters and butt chafing. They signify the quite a few ups and downs discovered alongside many mountain climbing trails, that are considered as deliberate obstacles positioned by sadistic path conferences and path maintainers to make backpackers “earn” their hikes.

However these PUDS have a goal that belays the attention. For one, it’s merely simpler to construct a path alongside the highest of a ridgeline, PUDS and all, which is why so many trails comply with them. They’re simpler to take care of since gravity supplies the path drainage they usually’re simpler for hikers to comply with since you possibly can rapidly sense whenever you fall off the ridgeline and begin to sidehill. Whereas hikers do complain about them, it’s simply the traditional bellyaching that backpackers do to commiserate with different hikers they meet on the path.

The Rollercoaster is a famous stretch of PUDS on the Appalachian Trail in Northern Virginia.
The Rollercoaster is a well-known stretch of PUDS on the Appalachian Path in Northern Virginia.

PUDS are very prevalent on the Appalachian Path which follows the ridgeline of the Appalachian Mountains over 2000 miles from Georgia to Maine. Whereas Mt Katahdin on the northern terminus of the Appalachian Path is just 5269 toes excessive, the entire variety of toes that thru-hikers and part hikers should climb alongside the size of the Appalachian Path quantities to roughly 250,000 toes, which provides as much as lots of PUDS simply to climb a 5000-foot mountain.

However then once more, the journey is the vacation spot, one thing that lots of hikers and backpackers lose sight of in-the-moment once they’re bitching a few path. They’ll be a time when the mountain climbing is over that you simply’ll look again and marvel why you’re sitting behind a desk or a money register when you possibly can be outdoors and climbing PUDS.


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