Duncannon, Penn., Doyle Hotel, AT NOBO mile 1143.1, Thursday April 24, 2014 — The Doyle has been one of the iconic AT destinations for a very long time.
Priced for a hiker’s budget, this vintage 1905 hotel welcomes hikers with a smile and open arms. The owners, Vickey and Pat Kelly, led the initiative to make Duncannon an official AT “Trail Town.” They truly are hiker-friendly folks.
The Doyle features everything a discriminating guest could expect from an unrenovated and threadbare late Victorian era working class hotel building.
One Doyle fitness exclusive is the absence of elevators which helps maintain hikers’ leg strength, a critical characteristic that often diminishes while they languish in hamburger-stuffed towns.
Ambiance exudes throughout the hotel. Reminiscent of nature, critters found along the trail are conveniently located in guest rooms and throughout the building. The antiquarian shared baths and room appointments would be impressive to the 18th century experts on “Antiques roadshow.”
The bar and kitchen are to be commended for their hiker fare. Army surveys for years have shown that soldiers value temperature and volume above all else. The Doyle’s menu scores a hundred percent on both. It’s selection of craft brews is excellent.
Karma rated the Doyle cheeseburger “best on the trail.” She makes a valid point. By the time she reached the Doyle, she knew her cheeseburgers.
The Doyle may not have earned any Michelin stars, and there is no expectation that it ever will. But, I’ll have to award it at least one asterisk for brand consistency. It promises nothing but delivers so much more in its unique way. It is a hiker-friendly place indeed, and best of all, a friendly home away from home.
Today’s trek chugged through the farmlands of Pennsylvania’s fertile Cumberland Valley complete with curious cows. The view of Duncannon along the Susquehanna River was magnificent.