It looks like I may have time off for a trip of up to 5 nights, from July 26 to 31, so I'm looking for ideas. Because my time is limited, I'd like to stay within a few hours of home (the Philly suburbs) to minimize travel time. Avoiding crazy rocks is key as well, as I'm rehabbing a sprained ankle. That means the Pennsylvania AT is out.
My first thought is the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail. It's a 70-mile linear hike about 4 hours from home. That should suit my hiking pace well. For those who are familiar with this trail, a few questions: Are the shelters sufficient that I can travel without a tarp or other shelter? (That and the summer weather could result in a truly lightweight experience.) What type of shuttle arrangements are available? If I find I'm hiking faster than anticipated, can I shift my permit from one shelter to another?
Any other trip suggestions within a similar distance? That would include most of Pennsylvania (except NW), Catskills, Maryland, the northern half of Virginia, and maybe even Dolly Sods.
Thanks for your help!