Thursday, April 24, 2014
Home > Uncategorized

Uncategorized

Chillin’ at the Holiday Inn

Hitch hiking out of Hiawassee

This post is long overdue. It's from my first week on the trail. Wifi has been really difficult to get ahold of.  A lot of places claim to have wifi, they just don't have wifi that works.  I'm having a great time out here! No tears or thoughts of quitting yet.  There are so many nice people out here with amazing stories.  Hopefully I'll be able to give an update on the past week and a half tonight or tomorrow. 4/10/2014 Neel Gap to Low Gap Shelter Day Miles: 11.5 Total Trip Miles: 43.2 Miles in the double digits!  What???  Yep.  I saw a bear but I feel like I cheated.  The trail crossed a road and I saw a few people walking down the road toward something.  They said a man on a motorcycle told them there was a bear a little Read more [...] Read More »

Leaky Tent, Creaky Tree, and Too Few Calories

1534301_461823257283904_13579885050051672_n

Well hello. Here's me sitting at a computer for the first time in 21 days...with the intentions of cranking out an update! First off, thank you so very much for your kind words. Those body aches I talked about in my last blog post ended up being symptoms of Strep Throat--no wonder I couldn't consume anything but honey water! Zero days may be fun, but five zero days are the definition of no fun. Lucas and I eventually went Stir Crazy in Hiawassee, Georgia. The day before we made our way back to The Trail, I visited the E.R (second doctor's visit at that point) and the Doc just said to pop more Ibuprofen. So I bumped up my intake of pills and felt almost okay; we hiked only four miles our first day back. I could hardly eat mashed potatoes, peanut Read more [...] Read More »

re-Equip via PO

I'm taking an unplanned off trail day to re-equip. My GoLite Pursuit is failing in the shoulder straps and REI gave me a deal on an Ospery Atmos 65. I had to slow my pace for a few days.  Alot of folks are out hiking with GoLites and Osprey packs.  The GoLites handle less heavy loads and don't take a liking to heavier ones. One thing I've learned is no mater how good the gear is, it's better to re-equip and break in new gear before the hike. The GoLite I've used for 5 years and did not expect it to fail. I'm sure the new pack will work out great however I've loaded up for 9 days so I can push through the Smokies. This is my first post on Appalachian Trials. My previous posts are on http://preyingjaws.blogspot.com I want to thank Zach Read more [...] Read More »

Ready to go!

ebay 004

This last week has been a whirlwind!  I’ve been to REI 3 times, packed my bag, cut down weight, packed it again, and repeated the process multiple times.  My bag weighed 30 pounds without water.  This was NOT the plan.  The plan was 30 pounds with water.  I got the weight down to 25 pounds without water by getting rid of almost every extra piece of clothing, replacing some gear with lighter weight options, taking out a jar of peanut butter, 2 pasta sides, 2 pop tart packs (those things are heavy!), and a can of chicken.  I don’t have anything else I can take out of my pack.  I’ve been pretty ruthless.  Currently, I’m at a hotel in Gainesville, GA with my roommates (mom and dad).  They’ll drive me to a parking lot about a mile Read more [...] Read More »

How to prepare your trail boss.

10151984_10203602415244958_352717969_n

The term ‘trail boss’ is often thrown around hiker talk and refers to the individual at the other end of the universe with whom you utilize as a major resource while on the trail (aka someone with access to a grocery store, internet, post offices, and showers on a regular basis). This person is usually a close friend or family member who isn’t able to hike with you but still wants to show support, and is used to coordinate mail drops, gear exchanges, bill payments, and other vital tasks. While it is possible to hike the AT without a trail boss (or mail drops for that matter) it certainly makes things easier if you are planning even a minimum number of mail drops on your adventure. So assuming you have already figured out who your Read more [...] Read More »

One Year Later

photo (4)

One Year Ago It is hard for me to believe that it has been one year since I first stepped foot on the Appalachian Trail to begin my thru hike. What a year it has been. A year ago, I was 29 years old and in the throes of a just-past-quarter-life crisis. I had quit teaching the year before, after discovering that my “dream job” was actually just a bunch of bureaucratic bullshit. I took a severe pay cut to work with troubled teens in a wilderness therapy program, and ended up having my car repossessed because of that decision. I had no car, two degrees I wasn't using (but was certainly paying for), and an underpaying, overly stressful job. Something wasn't working. My life. My life wasn't working. I decided to hike the trail Read more [...] Read More »

The Insanity Plea

308665_2565079694105_2060959661_n

Socrates — 'He who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god.' I feel like I'm a waste. I never learned a craft. I don't know how to play any instruments. Never even aspired to be a DJ (thankfully). I don't have any particular skills that would make me a valuable contributor in a world without technology. This is the most I've ever written in any form if it didn't involve school. School is basically all I have worked for and I passionately disliked almost all of it. Partially because I didn't learn much. I gained invaluable cerebral superpowers from the International Baccalaureate program I did in high school, but university left an unsettling feeling of Read more [...] Read More »

You’re Going to Die

image

You're going to die someday. Me too, probably. Maybe tomorrow morning at 4:30 a.m. while you dream of cupcakes. Maybe in 75 years while your family holds your old, wrinkly body and you're wearing a diaper. Either way, the body you call yours and all those memories you hold so dear and everything you've ever known will cease to be. It's quite poetic. What are you doing, right now? Did you come here from Facebook or Twitter or some other click that took you through the mass clusterfuck of voices clawing at the attention bit - screaming to be heard, to be noticed, to have a little ego stroke for some transient bit of self worth? Good. When you're done reading this I want you to go do two things: 1) put down your computer or phone or whatever Read more [...] Read More »

The Paradigm Shift

340729_10150494253796808_1986121346_o

I beg young people to travel. If you don’t have a passport, get one. Take a summer, get a backpack and go to Delhi, go to Saigon, go to Bangkok, go to Kenya. Have your mind blown. Eat interesting food. Dig some interesting people. Have an adventure. Be careful. Come back and you’re going to see your country differently, you’re going to see your president differently, no matter who it is. Music, culture, food, water. Your showers will become shorter. You’re going to get a sense of what globalization looks like. It’s not what Tom Friedman writes about; I’m sorry. You’re going to see that global climate change is very real. And that for some people, their day consists of walking 12 miles for four buckets of water. And so there are Read more [...] Read More »

Hiking with a Dog (Part 2)

hiking with a dog

If you missed Part 1 of Hiking with a Dog, you can click here to read it.  We covered diet, paws, ticks and gear.  This time we wanted to talk about a few things to consider before hiking with your dog. Before we get to that though, we wanted to give an update on Rooney.  In Part 1, we talked about the dangers of ticks and we mentioned that our pup contracted a tick-borne illness on the AT.  Several people sent us messages asking how Rooney was doing today and we wanted to say thank you for the concern!  We’re happy to report that he’s doing great and is fully recovered.  We got off the trail when his injuries first occurred and took him straight to a vet.  He had a cast for a few days (to protect his swollen paw) and a month of Read more [...] Read More »