Every hiker has different preferences for the maildrops they decide to use (some use none at all). Mountain Man preferred more frequent drops in the beginning of his hike to reduce the weight he was carrying. We used the addresses and instructions on this website. I send by USPS (usually in priority flat rate boxes). I suggest you also pick up book.
The following are the Maildrop locations we’re using for the thru-hike (updated in real time), and the supplies I’ve sent to each:
Carried at start of hike: 3 breakfasts, 3 dinners, crackers, hard sausage/cheese, 1/2 quart of GORP, assorted snacks. Started 4/10.
Neels Gap (Mountain Crossings): 6 breakfasts, coffee, 6 dinners, 4 Cliff Builders Bars, a quart of GORP. Picked up 4/13.
Franklin (Haven’s Budget Inn): 6 breakfasts, coffee, 6 dinners, 2 Cliff Builders Bars, a quart of GORP, a few treats. Mailed 4/13
Fontana Village (Fontana Village Resort): 6 breakfasts, coffee, 3 Thai Pineapple Chicken, 3 Shepherd’s Pie, 6 PB Protein Bars, Clif Builder’s Bar, 2 beef jerky sticks, quart of GORP. Mailed 4/20.
Gatlinburg: We originally planned this maildrop but decided to skip it. Mountain Man will pick up supplies in town.
Hot Springs (c/o General Delivery): 6 breakfasts, 3 Thai Pineapple Chicken, 4 Shepherd’s Pie, I FORGOT THE COFFEE, Clif Builder’s Bar, beef jerky sticks, letter from Mountain Man’s momma. Mailed 4/30.
Erwin, TN (Uncle Johnny’s Nolichucky Hostel and Outfitters): 7 HICA bars, 4 BBQ Potatoes, 1 Unstuffed Pepper (starting to back off the care packages a bit…). Mailed 5/11.