8/14 – A Walk in the Park

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I have to say, it’s hard for me to remember a time before I was hiking in Virginia. As I’ve said before, Virginia contains over 550 miles of the AT, nearly a quarter of the whole trail. If you’ve had much connection with the trail, you’ve probably heard of the Virginia Blues. It’s the state […]

Best Zero Ever

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This far along in the trip, I think there are some things most thru-hikers can agree on. One is that a successful thru-hike takes discipline and planning. In order to make the miles, it’s necessary to stick to a schedule, discipline yourself, and keep some sort of an itinerary at least a few days in […]

Sweet Virginia

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I’ve been in the great state of Virginia for nearly two weeks now, and so far it’s been some of my smoothest time on the trail yet. I apologize for not posting in such a long time, cell signal, much less mobile data, have been sparse at best. I’ve also been short on places to […]

Hold Fast

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Well, it was bound to happen. After dealing with inclement weather, ornery wildlife, and difficult terriain, it was time I dealt with disease. I wouldn’t be getting the full Appalachian Trail experience if I didn’t get sick at least once. Getting sick is common among thru-hikers, and it’s not hard to figure out why. We’re […]

The Proving Ground

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I survived Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It sounds like a slogan on a gift-shop t-shirt that a day-tripping tourist would buy. But I gave it some thought, and that’s the best way I can put it. Everyone told me the Smokies would be hard, but I still underestimated these mountains. I’ll come right out […]

5/4 The Power and the Glory

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Two days ago, I reckoned with my own death. Not in a hypothetical, philosophical sense, either. The most real, tangible sense imaginable. And it was one of the most holy, humbling, and exhilarating things I’ve ever experienced. Now today wasn’t the first time I’ve given mortality a good long look in the eye. I’ve had […]

Soul Food 

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I anticipate that by the time you’re reading this, I’ll be a mile up, approaching the summit of Wayah Bald, roughly 120 miles away from my starting point at Springer Mountain. But right now, I’m laying in a hammock on the front porch of Gooder Grove Hostel wearing nothing but a pair of sparkly red […]

A Spark Ignites, Pt III: A Manifesto

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Today, I return. Today, I start back on the Appalachian Trail at Unicoi Gap, heading north. This is where my trip truly begins, and barring any unforeseen circumstances, the next time I come home, it’ll be by way of Maine. I’ve been home almost two weeks, and with every passing day, I’ve gotten more restless […]