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Cumberland Island National Seashore, GA

Feb 20 - Feb 27, 2022 -- $1300 ★, Only 1 Spot Left

Cumberland Island National Seashore is a beautiful barrier island in Georgia just 50 miles north of Jacksonville, FL boasting a wealth of natural attractions. Whether it's quiet coastal marshes, the Atlantic surf pounding undeveloped dunes, wild feral horses you're sure to see roaming the island, beachcoming for sand dollars or sharks teeth, grand live oak trees, armadillos scampering through saw palmettos, Victorian ruins from a bygone era, or glimpses of an occasional alligator, manatee or pod of dolphins, Cumberland Island is sure to please the senses. Get away from your frigid climate, explore a wild barrier island, and get a fitness jumpstart.

Cumberland Island is one of Fitpacking's most attainable offerings and is highly recommended for beginners. Our route will traverse nearly all of backcountry trails of this primarily flat island. Although our daily mileages are not overly ambitious, carrying around a backpack all day, especially along the sandy beach can be difficult. On days we get into camp early, we can head to the beach to beachcomb and enjoy the surf rolling in.


Weather is always an important concern when backpacking. February temperatures average in the mid-70s, which is perfect for backpacking, but we might also experience blazing heat, some rain or even frost at night. The water temperature will probably be too cold to comfortably enter, but some intrepid participants have done so on previous trips. But usually you can expect at least a few days of warmth.

Probable Trip Leaders

Bruce Cannon
Maxie Johnson


$1300 per person double occupancy. Here, double occupancy means that you will share a hotel room with another trip participant. You will also be responsible for transportation to and from Jacksonville, FL (JAX) as well as personal equipment, restaurant meals (typically 2 dinners) and any gratuities for guides.

Covered expenses include 2 nights in a hotel, 6 days of trail meals, ground transportation, Cumberland Queen ferry tickets, National Seashore permits, camping fees and awesome guides.

Tipping: In order to keep our prices competitive with (and hopefully favorable to) other outfitters, we shamefully can’t pay our guides as much as we think they deserve. Like most other guiding services, we rely on the generosity of our participants to make up this shortfall by tipping the guides. While tips are not required or expected, if your guides have served you well, please consider a gratuity so they can continue living their extravagant lifestyles of eating powdered meals, sleeping in the dirt and pooping in smelly outhouses and small holes they've dug.


We highly recommend you read the book Untamed in preparation of the trip.

Here is a great map of the island.

Here is a New York Times article about how the island may be threatened by commercial space exploration.

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Sunday, February 20, 2022

Fly or drive into Jacksonville, FL (JAX)

Take free airport shuttle to our local hotel (TBD)

Equipment shakedown

Obtain any last-minute equipment participants forgot at Gander Mountain, 13075 City Square Drive, Jacksonville, FL, 32218, (904) 714-3557

Trail mix distribution

"Before" body composition measurements taken

Go out for welcome dinner at a local restaurant (cost of dinner not included in trip cost)

Monday, February 21, 2022

Second set of "before" body composition measurements taken

All the items that you won't bring on the trail will be set aside and put in storage

Free breakfast in hotel

Shuttle to St. Marys, GA

Take the 9AM Cumberland Queen Ferry to Cumberland Island

Arrive at Sea Camp Ranger Station at 9:45AM

In the past, the Rangers have given us a mandatory presentation about the island and regulations, but may no longer require it

Hike 0.1 miles from Sea Camp Dock to the Main Rd.

Turn onto the Parallel Trail and Hike 2.7 miles to Little Greyfield Rd.

Hike 0.1 miles on Little Greyfield Rd. to the Main Rd.

Hike 0.4 miles on Main Rd. to Old House Rd.

Hike 0.7 miles on Old House Rd. to Old House Dock. Dock may be rickety in places

Hike 0.8 miles on Old House Rd. to Main Rd.

Hike 0.7 miles on Main Rd and Stafford Beach Rd. to Stafford Campsite.

Camp at Stafford Campsites Sites 2, 5 & 7, campfires permitted

Miles today: 5.5. Total miles: 5.5

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Hike 0.6 miles on Stafford Beach Road to Main Rd.

Hike 1.4 miles on Main Rd. to Old River Trail.

Hike 2.7 miles on the Old River Trail to Plum Orchard

Take a 1 hour tour of Plum Orchard Mansion (schedule permitting)

Fill all water vessels at Plum Orchard

Hike 1.1 miles to Yankee Paradise Camp

Set up camp at Yankee Paradise Camp

Miles today: 5.8. Total miles: 11.3

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Hike 1.4 miles on the Duck House Trail to the beach

Hike 3.5 miles on the beach to the South Cut Trail marker post

Hike 1.6 miles on the South Cut Trail to the Killman Field Trail

Hike 0.9 miles on Killman Field Trail to Brickhill Bluff Campsite

Camp at Brickhill Bluff

Miles today: 7.4. Total miles: 18.7

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Day-Hiking only today

Hike 0.8 miles on the Brickhill Trail to Main Rd.

Hike 0.3 miles on the Brickhill Trail to the Bunkley Trail

Hike 0.6 miles on Bunkley Trail to North Cut Road

Hike 1.0 miles Northbound to the First African Baptist Church. Restrooms nearby at the Alberty House. Carol Ruckdeschel lives next door.

Turn around and Hike 2.4 miles on North Cut Road to Candler Beach Rd.

Hike 1.4 round trip miles to the beach for lunch

Hike 1.7 miles on Roller Coaster Trail to South Cut Trail

Hike 1.0 miles on South Cut Trail to Main Rd.

Hike 0.9 miles on Main Rd. and Brickhill Trail to Brickhill Bluff

Camp at Brickhill Bluff

Miles today: 10.1. Total miles: 28.8

Friday, February 25, 2022

Hike 1.3 miles on the Main Rd. to the Oyster Pond Trail

Hike 1.4 miles on the Oyster Pond Trail to the Tar Kiln Trail

Hike 1.5 miles on the Tark Kiln Trail to Yankee Paradise

Hike 1.4 miles on the duck House Trail to the beach

Hike 3.1 miles on the beach to Stafford Beach Rd.

Hike 0.2 miles on Stafford Beach Road to Stafford Campsite

Camp at Stafford Campsites Sites 2, 5 & 7, campfires permitted

Camp at Stafford Campsite

Miles today: 8.9. Total miles: 37.7

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Hike 0.2 miles to the beach

Hike 4.1 miles on the beach to Sea Camp Marker Post.

Hike 0.6 miles to Ferry Dock.

Miles today: 4.9. Total miles: 42.6

End of hiking

Catch the 10:15 boat back to St. Marys. They may add a 2:30PM ferry which would allow us more time in the morning to check out the Dungeness Ruins

Arrive at St. Marys, GA at 11:00AM or 3:15PM

Shuttle back to Jacksonville Hotel (TBD)

"After" measurements taken

Dinner and awards Ceremony (Dinner not included in trip cost)

There should be a fair of time if you'd like to depart Jacksonville in the evening.

This is the official end of the trip. You are welcome to spend the night at the hotel, however if you drove and would like to get on the road or if you flew and would like to schedule a late flight (or a red-eye if this is a West Coast trip) you can definitely do so.

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Free Hotel Breakfast

Take free airport shuttle

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