On the Beaten Path: An Appalachian Pilgrimage

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Building on a strong foundation of four Florida Trail guidebooks previously written by Sandra Friend, this book contains more services details in an easier-to-read format … inspired by The AT Guide. David Miller was kind enough to assist us in understanding the logic behind his layouts and provided us the service icons found throughout the text. This page book covers the full length of the Florida Trail, including both portions that are designated National Scenic Trail segments as well as connector trails like the Ocean-to-Lake Trail.

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Mileages, and the overall flow of the book, are based on a typical thru-hiker route from Big Cypress to Fort Pickens, with alternate routes fully detailed in the back of the book. Samples of these spreads are on the website. Chris Townsend is a prolific outdoor writer and photographer with a passion for wilderness and mountains, and a penchant for long distance hikes. He is the author of seventeen books, most illustrated with his own photographs. How fortunate the Pacific Northwest Trail one of our newest National Scenic Trails is to have its first memoir written by this award-winning writer who, by the way, was also the first person to walk the length of the Canadian Rockies.

In fact, much of the route is on abandoned logging roads and disused trails that are fading back into the wilderness. There are some difficult cross-country sections too, both above timberline on exposed rocky terrain and in dense vegetation in the forests, where bushwhacking is the apt term for desperate struggles through the undergrowth. If you read only one book about the A.

Brian King, the publisher and keeper-of-the-archives at ATC, is such an excellent writer that I feel unworthy of trying to write about his book.

Stories of the Appalachian Trail: A Recommended Book List - The Trek

The text is his, and without it, this would be just another coffee table book with pretty pictures. However, what he has written about the history of the Appalachian Trail—with a myriad of details—makes this a book to read and treasure, even if you do keep it on your coffee table. You might expect a history book to be dull—just the thing to put you to sleep at night. Brian has brought 75 years of A. A wanderlust soon set in. Then other books. More gear. And this gear is not of the sort that really could be used for anything except backpacking.

Soon you are telling people what you are going to do. Note the word commitments. Two-thousand-some miles…No, I had climbed way out on a limb, leaving myself just hanging there. Commitment is also a big factor in his marriage to his wife, Kris. Kris is a major figure throughout the book, and he timed his summiting of Katahdin to coincide with their fortieth anniversary.

I got the feeling that this book was, in a way, a long love letter to her. George had another commitment, and that was to honor the spirit of Earl Shaffer in his approach to hiking the trail. Shaffer was the consummate purist, and if there is any similarity to what he did and what we do as thru-hikers, it seems like there should be some effort made to emulate…what he did—hike the entire length of the trail, fully loaded, heading the correct direction at all times.

As the hike progressed, and George lost 35 pounds, he felt he looked more and more like his namesake character. Repeated over and over…How arduous this section of the Trail is. How very arduous this mountain is. How arduous this rainy day is. A fun word to say. The epitome of understatement…. There are a few pages at the end giving details of his equipment and its cost, lodging and camping places and their cost,and trail jargon. This is a book worth savoring—an exceptional book with a lot to offer the reader.

The accounts of his family life and his career add much to the content, and I found it a wonderful introduction to a very interesting person. George and his wife, Kris who is a nurse , have lived in 70 towns in 19 states and currently reside in Wausau, Wisconsin. They have 3 children. Did I hear you say that trail memoirs recounting every little detail of a hike, step by step, day after day, month after month, are the most dull and boring things ever written?

Welcome to the Appalachian Trail community. And then there are a few characters who have been given pseudonyms; have fun guessing who they really are. If these two volumes leave you wanting more, take a look at TrailJournals. He says he then plans to write about that little stroll. I can hardly wait. He currently resides in Jasper, Alabama.


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Now imagine, really hard, the extreme physical and emotional struggles of such a hike and how easily they could tear your marriage or friendship apart. How do spouses or friends succeed not only in hiking from one endpoint to the other, but in holding together—and even improving—their relationship? How do they deal with the struggles and come out even stronger at the end? Randy Motz is a sound engineer and composer of music for Native American flute.

In , this couple—both in their fifties and married 14 years with 4 children between them—took six months off to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail together. Solemates, is not one of the typical chronological hiking journals. They do describe many days of their hike, but not necessarily in order. The descriptions, worked into anecdotes about people, places and events throughout their hike, illustrate how the hike enriched their relationship.

The authors also include many quotes from, and anecdotes about, other couple and solo hikers on ways they dealt with life on the trail.

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Solemates includes a list of Trail terms, their gear list, a food list and information about Leave No Trace and Hiking in Harmony. Walker, Bill. Skywalker: Close Encounters on the Appalachian Trail. Macon, Ga. After all, he already loved to walk—-he walked to work and walked to explore cities in which he lived. So why not walk the Appalachian Trail? Ignore the fact that he had never slept even one night in the woods. The thru-hike idea stayed with him, and he finally decided that would be his year to hike.

It was pretty much a disaster for Bill. But Bill possessed one very important quality that made all the difference—- determination. How else would one describe him, in addition to being determined? In fact, this book is such a delight to read precisely because of his fondness for people, his observation of their character, and his talent for capturing it all in words. But he also writes about such colorful characters as dominatrix Drama, lewd and obnoxious Tanya, annoying Air Puppy and a group of nine male hikers in their twenties know as The Sleazebags.

Some of his companions, as is always the case, dropped out along the way. Bill is a former commodities broker and teacher who grew up in Macon, Georgia and later lived in Chicago, London and various Latin American countries. He currently resides in Sarasota, Florida where he works for a financial literacy and youth entrepreneurship program. His fondest hope is that his story will inspire others who are new to the outdoors, just like he was, to give some thought to an Appalachian Trail thru-hike. Skywalker is hiking the PCT as of this writing.

Espy, Gene. As a year-old, Gene Espy picked up a chinaberry stick in the woods and felt an inexplicable urge to keep it. Twelve years later he was back in the woods on his thru-hike, carrying that same stick. In this simple straightforward book is the life story of the man who, in , was the second to complete a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail—a much more difficult and solitary journey than it is today.

He writes of the years leading up to his hike, of developing the skills and inner resources that would enable him to complete his hike. He tells, with his wry sense of humor, how his early experiences—such as selling Coca-Cola and distributing flyers so he could save pennies to buy a bicycle—taught him ingenuity, self-motivation, discipline, perseverance and, most of all, determination. And what about that chinaberry stick? It finished the hike with Gene, but finished a foot shorter due to an incident with a timber rattler.

Several photographs of the display are among the many color illustrations in this beautifully crafted book. Gene grew up in Cordele, Georgia and now resides in nearby Macon with his wife Eugenia.


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He is a graduate of Georgia Tech and a retired U. Air Force aerospace engineer. These books were originally self-published by the authors.

Now they are being published by Stackpole Books. A buyer at Campmor liked their books so much that he acted as their agent and shopped them around to publishers. Since he was central to the effort that made the publication of their books at Stackpole a reality, the authors are asking that people who wish to purchase the books do so at Campmor.

ALDHA :. Once upon a time, in a mountain kingdom not so far away, there were two charming and talented sisters who thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail from North to South, then turned around and thru-hiked it South to North. And they did it barefoot, mostly. This a true story, not a fairy tale. Or maybe a true story with some fairy-tale elements. They wanted to continue this experience on their thru-hikes. And a lot of words. And the words are quite, um…, dense in spots.

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