2018 Thru-Hiker Transformation Photos

While the real transformation happens inside the soul of a thru-hiker, it doesn’t mean we don’t love to see what 2,000 miles of hiking looks like from start to finish. From bright-eyed excitement and fresh gear at the start, to the haggard, trail-worn, still glorious finish photos, here are some of the best before-and-after thru-hike photos of 2018.

Pika, Appalachian Trail

30 lbs down ?

Juju, Pacific Crest Trail

Slider, Appalachian Trail


“I hiked the entire trail with a yellow plastic trombone. I lost about 17 pounds on the trail and the last 10 pounds were lost within the last 2 weeks of my hike.”

Aquamira Snotrocket, Appalachian Trail

“My weight and measurements didn’t change very much. The real transformation is inside but still shows.”

Day Hiker (trail name!), Appalachian Trail

“Started Feb 21 at 305 pounds. Finished July 27th between 205 and 215.”

Logan, John Muir Trail

Pebbles, Appalachian Trail

Walker in the Woods, Appalachian Trail

Story, Appalachian Trail

Started the AT 3/25/18 and finished 9/25/18. Lost 18 pounds and gained some leg muscles!

Toe Jam,  Pacific Crest Trail

Kelsy, Appalachian Trail

Rabbit, Continental Divide Trail

Triple Crowner: AT 2016, PCT 2017, CDT 2018

Bingo and Ratatouille, Pacific Crest Trail


Brandon, Appalachian Trail

“My shipwreck survivor glamour shot.”

Ultraviolet, Pacific Crest Trail

Kelsey, Pacific Crest Trail

Bubbles, 2,200 miles on the Continental Divide Trail

“Yes… that is the same filthy shirt. If you could smell it… Jesus help us all. Didn’t complete my thru but had a great time trying!”

Seabiscuit, Pacific Crest Trail

Salty Dog, Appalachian Trail

“Day one, March 4. Starting my quest. July 30. Mile 1,520 near Great Barrington, MA,  after falling on a rock face and forced to terminate my thru-hike. It was my separated shoulder that ended it.  Will complete in 2020. Third photo is a couple hours later after a shower and some rum. Last photo, Aug. 4. On the way back to Alabama after a few days of  denying my fate and reluctantly deciding I can’t carry my backpack for several weeks.”

Scoop, Pacific Crest Trail

“This is Scoop (@trailscoop) before and after my 2018 PCT NOBO trek. I lost 39 pounds in five months. But I gained 23 new friends, whose average weight is 152 pounds each. That works out to a net gain of 661 pounds per month. I feel fat with friendships. OBTW, I’ve since gained back four pounds. Apparently the Snickers and IPA diet is only effective when accompanied by 25-mile days.”

Katie, Pacific Crest Trail

Ferrari, Appalachian Trail

new hats the trek


Throwdown, Appalachian Trail

“Lost 16 pounds!”

Fez, Pacific Crest Trail

Elizabeth, El Camino de Santiago

“I hiked 570 miles of the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage (in northern Spain) and lost 35 pounds on the trail. Since returning daily hiking has become part of my lifestyle and I lost another ten pounds and have regulated a weight of around 120 for the past four years… all kick-started from the pilgrimage.”

Melinda, John Muir Trail

Slackrack, Appalachian Trail

Orlando, Appalachian Trail

“You can determine the before and after!”

Paige, Pacific Crest Trail

“I lost 60 pounds!”

Concrete Cowboy, Appalachian Trail

“Fifty-seven pounds lost, or an entire small human.”

Jayson, Pacific Crest Trail

“I lost 57 pounds thru-hiking the PCT! It’s nuts!”

No Excuse, Appalachian Trail


“Lost 27 pounds!”

Huck, Pacific Crest Trail

The Crawford Family, Appalachian Trail

Sour Patch, Appalachian Trail

Ashley Samuel, Appalachian Trail

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