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Mighty Blue On The Appalachian Trail: The Ultimate Mid-Life Crisis
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Mighty Blue On The Appalachian Trail: The Ultimate Mid-Life Crisis

Author: Steve Adams

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An overweight, 61-year-old retiree, with zero hiking experience, decided to hike the entire 2,185.3 mile length of the Appalachian Trail in 2014. What could possibly go wrong? As his brother, Mike, commented, "It's a bit like taking up boxing and fighting Mike Tyson in your first bout." Join Steve and his guests as they discuss all aspects of the trail, from gear to Lyme Disease, then back to trail magic and injury.
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I’m into my third week on the trail and still spending most nights indoors. The first two weeks were always going to be that way, with John, then Richard and Wendy as part of my hike, yet the weather has intervened in this third week. Hopefully, the weather is about to turn and I’ll be able to camp outside a bit more. I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXsThere, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXsThere, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
The last three days have tested me yet again, though I’m pretty much on schedule.  A schoolboy error on my part led to a very low energy day, though meeting dear friends at the end of the day more than made up for it. I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXsThere, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
The first week has been unexpected, exciting, and even a little scary. I’m now 80 miles into the hike and just starting to feel that I’m finding my way. John has returned home, as originally planned, and the tenor of the hike has shifted as I’m on my own. I’ve been overwhelmed by the beauty of this hike, I’ve been surprised by the difficulty, and I start week two excited by the prospect of the time I’ll be spending with dear friends later in the week. I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting [https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/](https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/ "smartCard-inline"). And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs "smartCard-inline")  There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. [https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/](https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ "smartCard-inline") If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at [https://www.hikingradionetwork.com](https://www.hikingradionetwork.com "smartCard-inline") . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at [https://hrntradingpost.com/](https://hrntradingpost.com/ "smartCard-inline") , or click on the store button on our network website at [https://www.hikingradionetwork.com](https://www.hikingradionetwork.com "smartCard-inline") . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
The first three days of my South West Coast Path hike are in the books. Unfortunately, my notes weren’t in the books!  I somehow lost them, so this first podcast is a little thin on detail, though full of my heart.  I hope you enjoy it. I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXsThere, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Today’s guest has recently completed a truly epic journey. Briana DeSanctis set out to hike the American Discovery Trail in January 2022. 6,800 miles later, having taken in all the seasons–twice–Briana finished her personal odyssey in February this year, becoming the first solo woman to do so. Having thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail almost a decade ago, Briana considered that it wasn’t enough for her, so she set her sights on this epic hike and worked to accumulate the funds she needed. On the way, she discovered that no woman had completed this hike, so the impetus to become the first woman doubly motivated her. She worked as a journalist throughout the hike, and you can see her column here. https://dailybulldog.com/author/briana-desanctis/. You can find out more about Briana through her social media links on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/rockygoeshiking and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/brianadesanctis/, while her website, http://www.brianadesanctis.com/ , will give you even more about her. After Briana, I share a short journal entry from a fun group hike of the Virginia Triple Crown, which I used as a shakedown for my upcoming hike in the UK. It was also a chance to catch up with fellow team members of Team 6 from my TSX Challenge hike in 2022. A couple of other friends joined us, and we had a blast.     I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting Hike with Steve - Empowering Parents, One Step at a Time | Parenting Matters %. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
We have an old friend on the show today. Clay Bonnyman Evans completed his AT thru-hike back in 2015, yet his latest hike is the intriguing Cape Wrath Trail. Clay shares his experience in his own inimitable style, even adding an unscheduled walk after the hike from Edinburgh to Glasgow. Because, well, why not? Clay is a contributor to the Trek, and you can follow his blog here https://thetrek.co/the-cape-wrath-trail-the-wild-wonderful-230-mile-at-of-the-uk/ He has added further links to illustrate some of the topics he brings up in our conversation to further aid you should you wish to follow this epic route. https://tinyurl.com/5873eesn https://www.hostellingscotland.org.uk/ https://www.mountainbothies.org.uk/ Also on the show today, the Dude, Brandon Jacob, shares news of what he hopes to become an annual “Dudefest” at Trent’s Grocery on June 1. If you’d like to attend or help out with the event, text the Dude on 713-443-8311. You can also email him at brandon@contractorscfo.com (don’t forget the “s”), though text is his preferred means of communication. I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting Hike with Steve - Empowering Parents, One Step at a Time | Parenting Matters %. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
A few weeks ago, I met today’s guest, Sarah Denison Williams, at the Appalachian Trail Club of Florida, and was so impressed by her presentation that I invited her on to the show. But it turned out that Sarah had so much more to share than the confines of her presentation that we expanded our recording to cover it all. Sarah shares the work done by the Conservation Foundation here in South West Florida, but also speaks to the local and national implications of that work and other trusts around the country. Additionally, she tells us the seven wilderness survival priorities that she presented to us at the Florida ATC, and we’ll all get a good refresher on that. You can find out more about the subjects that Sarah brings to the show by these various links. https://landtrustalliance.org/land-trusts https://soloschools.com/ https://www.byronkernssurvival.com/ https://www.thefolcfarm.com/remote-medical https://www.conservationfoundation.com/get-involved/celebrating-20-years/ https://www.conservationfoundation.com/join-us/donate/ In our occasional series on other hikes, Lisa Rana brings us the three or four day Tri State Hike, a 25-mile loop taking in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York. You can check out her daily progress on the hike via her vlog: Day 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9df-AEVMNw Day 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVWTgYtmelU Day 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8q1q4lIDqJY I hope we’re able to introduce other, shorter trails to offer something for everybody in the future. I’m using my hike in the UK on the South West Coast Path to help raise money for my absolute favorite charity, Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been privileged to serve for over a decade. You can learn more about the hike and the organization–and donate–by visiting https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/. And, maybe, you’ll get a personal picture of me thanking you with your name etched in the sand during my hike. I hope you want to support this critical mission. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
We have an old friend back on the show today, though it’s the first time I’ve met him! He is George Steffanos, writer of the hugely entertaining blog, now book, Then the Hail Came. I read the book over about 18 months and was constantly gripped by both his recall and his descriptions of the trail. Also, it was 40 years ago that George headed out on the AT, and he shares plans for a future hike in 2025. You can buy the book at Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09QFG4ZR6, while you can learn more about George at https://www.georgesteffanos.com/. He’s also fairly lively on social media. You can follow him on Twitter (X) at https://twitter.com/GSteffanos , on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100084450877622 , and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/ges8853/ , all sites where you can gaze at some of his fabulous trail pictures. We start the Hike With Steve Challenge this week, by catching up with Katie Becker, Chief Executive for Parenting Matters, on whose board I’ve been proud to serve for over a decade. You’ll learn about the work that Parenting Matters does, as well as the exciting partnership with The Flanzer Trust that will double your support. Check it out at https://parentingmattersfl.org/eventer/hike-with-steve-empowering-parents-one-step-at-a-time/edate/2024-04-15/. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Bern Leibensperger discovered the Appalachian Trail when her daughter expressed an interest in section hiking the trail several years ago. Since then, the two of them have racked up over 1,000 miles and, in an attempt to integrate further into our community, Bern and her husband Glen opened a hostel for hikers in PA. We discuss what it is that hikers need and Bern shares her own insights from her hiking. She’s also a fierce proponent of the Hike for Mental Health organization, helping out whenever she can with that awesome mission. https://www.hikeformentalhealth.org/ You can find Bern and the Lookout Hostel on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php/?id=100083102450360&name=xhp_nt__fb__action__open_user , and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/thelookouthostel?igsh=dGRoaHBhaWJvdWE2&utm_source=qr. My friend, Nate Stockton, introduces me to the Collegiate Loop, which is very remote and looks awesome. Check out the map–and Nate–below. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
We have another successful AT thru-hiker on the show today. Yet Audrey Payne seemed very unlikely to get the chance to hike the trail a few years earlier. How she recovered, and ultimately succeeded, is a story that she tells here in a conversation with Steve. Now, six years later, Audrey has continued to hike and has just released her book about her hike in 2018. You can find it on Amazon here. https://www.amazon.com/Where-Rhododendrons-Bloom-Thru-Hiking-Appalachian/dp/B0CT5XD95X/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1JSIKUO1U4LE0&dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.VGwbKyOpSbCGAC_0wTgWr6WXHIWx6IKdEtKT2rkmSPKPMDLHERF9SNzSnKPyz2MpvNtzp9SIB98HId0sVpQJ-1EDABJs_YZ34xdGpVQuXd3rjRJif-zS4iflhEc0AvJHKNsuDpQHyofG4JzS6jOuoDJn-QcP76fn6Fd-ctg0n1uIPlGqv2fX0KaLu1fGiGxNT-rm0XlDqxMGA6fdHK3jlLpv-zn3YMZ3NDUGprXp-sI.1zyW5d1eKZdpJ9VVRg2xMNiI8W8K6jNdUDKXRdItLG0&dib_tag=se&keywords=audrey+payne&qid=1709759111&sprefix=audrey+payne%2Caps%2C138&sr=8-1 She also has an excellent website with great pictures of the AT and her other hikes. http://audrey-adventures.com/. Additionally, you can find her on social media at http://instagram.com/Audipayne, and on YouTube at https://youtube.com/@AudreyAdventures?si=aZkWlCGjPob5KWCQ. Also today, Bob Campbell, or Sloggy, shares his very recent trek to the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania. He mentions–and highly recommends–the company he used to make the trip happen. So, if you fancy checking Kilimanjaro out, you should visit Peak Planet at https://peakplanet.com/. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
We have two returning guests today. First up, Al Marriott, fresh from his AT thru-hike in 2022, followed up with the PCT last year. Al shares his varied life of adventure in a great conversation with Steve. He also tells us a story of how serendipitous the trail can be, with a chance meeting with people he shared an AT shelter with the previous year. Al’s YouTube channel–Adventure Together–continues to show his adventures. You can catch it here. https://www.youtube.com/c/AdventureTogether1?sub_confirmation=1 , while he has a bunch of great pictures on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/adventuretogether.ig/ and a wealth of stories on his blog at the Trek https://thetrek.co/author/al-marriott/ . Natisha Webb is our second returning guest, with her Christmas escape coming on the Foothills Trail. You can learn more about the trail at https://foothillstrail.org/ Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Jessie Gehner, MD, is a thru-hiker from 2008 who then went to medical school. She currently works as an ER physician at Roanoke hospital, and is a member of the faculty of the Wilderness Medical Society, spearheading the Wilderness Medicine Fellowship at her hospital. She has continued her hiking life and, in her work capacity, also hikes to Everest Base Camp each year with a group of medical professionals. Jessie has provided links for both the base camp group, https://www.blueridgeadventuremed.com/everest-trek.html and the Wilderness Medical Society. https://wms.org/WMS/WMS/Attend/Adventure-CME/Backpacking-Medicine/Master.aspx?EventKey=23BACK&hkey=784185ed-d042-416a-8eb6-b827030ebed2 She can also be found on Facebook at https://m.facebook.com/profile.php/?id=1445550661 We also finished our Mighty Blue Class of 2023 debriefs with Jessica Lang-Wright who, as you can see, has done a bit with her hair! Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at Woods Hole Weekend - Trailer. There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. Come on the show! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at Hiking Radio Network. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at HRN Trading Post, or click on the store button on our network website at Hiking Radio Network. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
We meet another Brit on the show today. Daniel Clark is a listener to the podcast, and he filled in the form to register as a guest on our website, adding rich detail about his 2023 thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. We explore some of his stories. Daniel has a terrific website that chronicles some of his other hikes. You can find it at All Walks | Ourwalks He is also on social media at Instagram and YouTube at Instagram (@walking__north) and Englishman Just Walking In our casual series of other hikes, my friend Andrew Cohen shares his recent experience on the TGO Challenge in Scotland. You can catch his YouTube at The Wandering Drew, where there is a playlist with 23 videos related to his equipment, some planning, as well as each day of the journey, and his travel to and from the UK. Check them out, as well as the TGO Challenge site itself, at A unique Scottish backpacking adventure, where you’ll find a ton of info about the challenge. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at Woods Hole Weekend - Trailer. There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. Come on the show! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at Hiking Radio Network. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at HRN Trading Post, or click on the store button on our network website at Hiking Radio Network  .If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Roxanne Lashley took on the AT last year and took her time. She had planned to go straight north to south, yet reaching Harpers Ferry past the Independence Day holiday, she knew she needed to flip north, then head back south. Roxanne finished back at Harpers Ferry and shares her story with us. In our conversation, Roxanne mentioned a couple of MeetUps, so, if you’re a lone who’d like to hike with others, check out these MeetUps Blue Hills Hiking & Biking Club | Meetup   Outdoor Afro Boston | Meetup https://www.meetup.com/hike-blue-hills/ Remember, there are MeetUps all over the country, so check out others in your area. Also today, Amanda Aguillard shares her story of hiking the Hadrian’s Wall Path in Scotland last year. You can read more about the Path at Hadrian's Wall Path: British Walking Guide: Two-way: Bowness-Newcastle-Bowness - 64 Large-Scale Walking Maps (1:20,000) & Guides to 30 Towns & ... Stay, Places to Eat (British Walking Guides) Also, she has shared links for the places she stayed at. inicio The Hollies Bed & Breakfast, Gilsland, Cumbria, Northumberland Home - Walwick Hall   Keelman's Lodge - Accommodation Newburn-upon-tyne Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at Woods Hole Weekend - Trailer. There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. Come on the show! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at Hiking Radio Network. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at HRN Trading Post, or click on the store button on our network website at Hiking Radio Network. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Our two guests today have something in common; they’ve both thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail, yet their stories have taken entirely different turns. Our main guest is Molly Gaynier, who thru-hiked the trail in 2022, relishing the experience, even dragging it out with her extended breaks to take in the whole thing. But it was after the trail that she went through something none of us would wish on our worst enemy. The grace and grit that she reveals in our conversation should alert you to the importance of not procrastinating, as well as her determination to get back on trail. You can follow Molly on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/mollybeth36/ . In our second conversation today, Dave Braunlich, or Seventy, talks to us about his Ouachita Trail experience, a 200-mile hike in Arkansas and Oklahoma. Here’s his video on the trip. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2IeRhfuhC8&t=582s . He also had a blog he used for planning if you'd like to get into more detail. https://www.treelinereview.com/where-to-go/ouachita-trail Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA8ImK4qpNc&list=PLu8u88nsJtgWZxT8DLwEW2yXcz4gT6HXs There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes this year. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. https://www.hikingradionetwork.com/show/mighty-blue-on-the-appalachian-trail-the-ultimate-mid-life-c/guests/intake/ If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/ , or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com . If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
DJ Mullet, or Dos Entradas, had been a hiker for several years, with the Appalachian Trail firmly in his sights. Yet a Type One Diabetes diagnosis seemed to have put paid to that dream. However, undaunted, DJ worked out not only how to manage the illness in his day-to-day life, he was able to manage it successfully on the AT in 2023. He shares his story eagerly, so that others will be inspired to do what it takes to get out into the woods to fulfill their own dreams. You can follow DJ on YouTube at Journey To The TRAIL- Ep.06 Diabetes Gear For Thru-hiking and on Facebook at two sites. Darrin Mullet and MADE TO MOVE: The A.T. in '23 | Facebook We welcome Jester and her buddy and partner, Austin to the show today as they celebrate the release of their documentary, Safe & Found, which features the selfless and heroic work performed by the Haywood County Search and Rescue Team. The film is well worth your time and can be found on YouTube at SAFE AND FOUND Documentary. If you’d like to find out more about the film, or speak with Jester or Austin, you can email them at info@jesterwallisproductions.com. There are some terrific shots of the team in action, as well as some jaw-dropping drawings by Heidi Nisbett of Sketching Summits. Check it out. Don’t forget. Our entire series of videos from our Woods Hole Weekend in 2022 is now FREE and available at my YouTube page at Woods Hole Weekend - Trailer. There, you’ll find all sorts of tips and tricks that our guests took away from the weekend that helped them with their own hikes. Check it out. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. Come on the show! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at Hiking Radio Network. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at HRN Trading Post, or click on the store button on our network website at Hiking Radio Network If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
The uniquely named Alyssa Whoaa is our main guest today. She came to me as a member of the TSX team and she is widely experienced in a variety of different adventures that have taken in many countries and even led her to the South Pole, with the North Pole her next great adventure. Alyssa has shared several links that may be of interest to listeners having heard her on the podcast. As she says, they are links to “interesting things.” Jobs in the US antarctic program (USAP): The USAP Portal: Science and Support in Antarctica - Jobs and Opportunities ‘ai pono hawaii, residential eating disorder treatment facility that i work for (eating disorder coaching is separate from ‘ai pono): Residential Eating Disorder Treatment Center TSX website: TSX Challenge - Guided Backpacking Challenges Northwinds expeditions, polar trainings in Baffin island: NorthWinds - Northwinds Expeditions Ventiventiventi project (haven’t mentioned this yet, but it’s a project I’m supporting in the spring: The Project | Venti Venti Venti Joanne has had a couple of months to reflect upon her own epic hiking year, and we catch up with her today on the show. The memories are all about “the people.” I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch. Come on the show! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Additionally, we accept Venmo and Zelle through steve@hikingradionetwork.com. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/, or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Olive McGloin and Darrell Johnson don’t seem content with straightforward thru-hikes, they tend to go for the YOYO. That is: they turn around and head back the way they’ve come to complete double thrus in a season. Olive has YOYO’d the Triple Crown, with Darrell almost complete in that endeavor. Their remarkable story has, I’m afraid, been beset by some technical difficulties on my part, but their story is so fascinating that I wanted to tell it. You can follow along with their adventures through Instagram at Instagram (@oudarrell) Mark Carpenter returns to the show with his reflections on his 2023 thru-hike after the benefit of a couple of months back home. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of Steve's Trail Days book offer (all three of his printed hiking books for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Jason Tompkins is a returning guest to the show this week. He was on last year, discussing a new route / trail that he came up with and named “The Carolinian.” This week, an AT thru-hike was just part of his 2023 adventure. He took on the Eastern Continental Trail, stretching from Key West in the south to Newfoundland; an epic, if ever there was one. Jason didn’t share any social links, but check out his YouTube channel at Out & About. It’s awesome. We also caught up once more with Mary Marks, who has had a little time to reflect on what she achieved last year in completing her AT thru-hike as part of the Mighty Blue Class of 2023. I often ask listeners for ideas on who to interview, and I’m sure several of you say, “I could do that. I’ve got an awesome story to tell.” You’re the person we need to hear from. If you’d like to be interviewed on the podcast, just register as a guest on the link below, and I’ll be in touch.  Register as a Guest If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Additionally, we accept Venmo and Zelle through steve@hikingradionetwork.com. Any support is gratefully received. You can also support our shows by visiting our online "Merch" store. Check it out at https://hrntradingpost.com/, or click on the store button on our network website at https://www.hikingradionetwork.com. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
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Comments (7)

Victor Bennett

I'm attempting something similar but need to find a driver who is willing to meet me along the way. vbennett@ymail.com Victor Bennett

Sep 21st
Reply

Dillon Vizcarra

Great job Steve, enjoy your podcast!

May 11th
Reply

Amy Sellers

Can I get a copy of Griz’s spreadsheet? cozyhome3@yahoo.com

Sep 18th
Reply

Amy Sellers

How do I get a chance to see the spreadsheet from Griz?! Would love to see it!

Sep 18th
Reply

Ed Boyce

m.j

Nov 6th
Reply (1)

Kirk Luoma

love the podcast mighty blue! i just started listening. I'm already 30 episodes in. long way to go, but truly looking forward to the future episodes.

Feb 2nd
Reply