OK. Right up front let me say that I realize there are a lot of variables involved in what I am asking. I am posting the question here because I believe people near my own age (68) can give me more representative answers for me.

I am getting back into the hiking and backpacking world this year as soon as it warms up. Right now I just want to do some preliminary planning. My health and fitness are pretty decent for someone my age. I am not doing triathlons but I do walk 3 to 4 miles several times a week. And I am working to improve my fitness.

What I am trying to figure out is what is a realistic number of miles per hour to plan on covering. The Foothills Trail in upstate SC is the type of terrain that is representative of where I will be hiking. There are some pretty decent elevation changes to deal with but nothing I would consider extreme. I have done day hikes over the past year or two in the same general area and terrain and have not encountered anything I could not handle.

I plan on starting out with a 2 or 3 nighter and building to a 5 nighter by early fall. But I am trying to determine how much of a trail to realistically plan on covering on an hourly/daily basis. I would like to plan around an hourly rate because I still need to determine how many hours per day that I am ready for right now.

Like I said, I know that a lot of variables are involved but I would like to get a feel for what some of you other senior citizens are doing.