Affordable Guided Hiking & Kayaking Vacations perfect vacation Aug 07, 2012 10:12 pm wanted to do a guided group hiking trip and had initially looked at large companies like BackRoads. Thank goodness I came upon ATA in my search. It was just what I was looking for, and it is a vacation where the activities are individually designed for your own level of fitness and ambition in hiking. The hikes were beautiful, challenging but not exhausting, and within a short distance of the Lodge the in one of the program's vans. If it wasn't an all-day hike, John takes anyone who wants to go out for either river kayaking or pond kayaking, which were just great experiences with the gorgeous fall folliage. No one should be scared off by the physical activity, you can do short and easy hikes on lovely country roads, or you can go straight up a mountain if you are up for it. There were two guides besides John, and they were both great. Summitt Lodge is a large, lovely and welcoming place, appropriately rustic for my taste, but very comfortable with all the creature comforts such as cable television. There is a really nice, large jacouzzi at the lodge. The food was very good, with many choices available. It was hearty, healthy, home-cooked food, whole grains, veggies. You choose what kind of lunch sandwich you want the day before, and the guides deliver your lunch to you on the trail or afterwards, depending on the time. The nice thing about this vacation is that you spend time with other people while hiking and at meals, but you can also spend time alone at the Lodge, or just go off on your own anytime. I especially loved playing with the Lodge's new 11-month old Saint Bernard puppy!
All in all, John and his guides are very invested in making sure each person gets to do the outdoor activities they like, at a level they are comfortable with. They help you with your gear, and any little problems that come up. I would definitely do this vacation again.
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