Are you one of those folks who have the crazy, irrational dream of thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail? Well, here's your chance to hike vicariously. I've posted several links to online journals of folks who are thru-hiking the "AT" and other trails this year. I'll be adding more as I find journals that I personally enjoy; some journals turn out to be not-so-interesting, while others are a pure joy to read.
So far, I'm linking the following:
Ken and Marcia Powers are thru-hiking the southern route of the American Discovery Trail, America's only coast-to-coast, non-motorized recreation trail. It's more than 6,800 miles long and goes through fifteen states, from Delaware on the east coast to northern California on the west. Ken and Marcia thru-hiked the Pacific Crest Trail in 2000, traveled Europe in 2002, and hiked the Continental Divide Trail in 2002. In 2003, they thru-hiked the most well-known of America's long trails, the Appalachian Trail. And they did all of this hiking after retirement! I've linked their personal website in my list of hiking links.
Daniel Bailey is an Oregon native who recently finished college. He is dedicating his hike to his Uncle Patrick, who was diagnosed with adult onset MS a few years ago. His journal includes a link to an MS benefit donation page.
Apple Pie and Chasing Amy stayed with us last week when taking a break from the trail. Apple Pie is from Holland and has several thousand miles under her boots already. Chasing Amy recently graduated from Columbia University with a degree in anthropology (even more useless than my degree in English!) and is taking some time to thru-hike the AT before starting medical school in the fall.
William "Spanky" Bateman is "a veteran long distance hiker, Christian father of a family of ten, speaker, teacher, mentor and writer" who is thru-hiking the Eastern Continental Trail (Florida to Cap Gaspe, Canada). I can't find any journal entries on his website, "Hike4Fathers," yet, but there is a lot of information on there, including his aspirations to write "a special inspirational book for fatherless children called, "Above the Clouds- searching for the Father to the fatherless" and to establish a national speaking tour encouraging today's youth and single-parent families toward restoration."
My friend Nocona is back on the Pacific Crest Trail this year, making up the miles they missed on last year's thru-hike attempt.
Our friend Stumpknocker is attempting to thru-hike the Eastern Continental Trail this year. Good luck, "Stumpy"!
Want to read more and/or different journals? Go to Trailjournals--the place on the internet for hiking journals.