Backpacker Radio #143 | Sophia “Wheelz” Garber
In today’s episode of Backpacker Radio presented by The Trek, we are joined by former Trek Vlogger, Sophia “Wheelz” Garber. Wheelz was a member of the AT NOBO turned NOGO class of 2020, due to the pandemic- duh. Her shot at redemption didn’t have to wait too long, as Sophia ended up completing her mission to hike the AT the very next year.
We learn what it was like to be on trail during the early days of the pandemic, how it felt to deal with social media trolls when trying to decide whether to stay or go (and the challenge of even getting off trail), the role Sophia’s recently deceased friend played in her motivation to hike, and how thru-hiking compared to Sophia’s 4,000-mile bikepacking trip just a couple years prior.
Things fall off the rails a bit in the segments, as we answer a couple of listener voicemail questions, do a triple crown of thru-hiker no-no’s, and a listener accuses Chaunce of having stinky privates.
Download this episode.
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Interview with Sophia “Wheelz” Garber
- Sophia’s Instagram
- Be the Sun Design Co Instagram
- Be the Sun Design Co Website
- First Descents Website
- Sophia’s Hiker? I Barely Know Her Shirt
Time stamps & Questions
00:04:39 – QOTD: Are there more doors or wheels in the entire world?
00:10:41 – BPR Announcements: Asheville Meetup Location May 11, 6:30pm
00:11:55 – Introducing Sophia
00:13:48 – Tell us about your cross-country bike adventure.
00:15:12 – What group did you bike with?
00:17:02 – Awkward silence.
00:17:12 – What would you pick between being on foot or being on a bike?
00:20:28 – Did you know anyone going into the bike ride?
00:21:07 – What if someone wants to quit?
00:21:57 – What kind of roads did you bike on?
00:22:15 – Was there any carryover between your biking gear and your hiking gear?
00:23:55 – Were there trail names on the bike ride?
00:24:35 – What would your next long bike ride be?
00:25:08 – Did the ride feel rushed at all?
00:26:04 – At what point did you realize you wanted to do the AT?
00:29:40 – Tell us about starting the AT on March 15, 2020.
00:30:38 – Discussion about getting off trail.
00:33:40 – Tell us about being on the receiving end of social media comments?
00:36:25 – What were the vibes on trail before you got off?
00:39:02 – Did you know right away that you’d re-attempt the trail the next year?
00:41:02 – Tell us more about Cristal and fundraising for the Ulman House.
00:46:38 – What led you to working for the Ulman House?
00:49:37 – Have you heard of the program First Descents?
00:50:18 – What was your fundraising goal?
00:53:21 – Having started the trail twice, did you prepare any differently the second time?
00:54:01 – What did it feel like to do horrible climbs twice at the start of the AT?
00:55:12 – What was your experience vlogging on trail?
00:56:40 – What was your editing practice and how long did editing take?
00:58:10 – Did you ever get weird comments?
01:00:31 – How often did you hike alone?
01:03:00 – Tell us your poop story.
01:07:30 – Tell us about aqua blazing.
01:11:55 – What’s another not boring story?
01:14:35 – Tell us about your woodburning side hustle.
01:16:14 – Where can people find your site?
01:17:49 – Did you go to school for art?
01:18:20 – Discussion about stick and poke tattoos.
01:19:40 – Tell us about your upcoming hiking plans.
01:21:10 – Thank you!
Triple Crown of thru-hiker no-no’s
5 Star Review
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