Hey… Hey Guys. It’s Me. (5 Quick Facts)

I’m new to the Appalachian Trials blog and feel the need to introduce myself. Truthfully I feel like I’m playing catch up here. because in less than two weeks I’ll be in a car heading east towards Springer with my mother and her best friend, and shortly after that my adventure begins. But not to rush ahead, back to the point of this post, an introduction to me. I have a tendency to ramble so without much ado…

1.) I’m a born and bred Kansas Citian – Go Royals and Chiefs! For undergrad I went to Truman State University (in Kirksville, MO the North Star of the great state of Missouri) and swore I would could go anywhere I wanted in the world for grad school. I ended up just an hour and a half from home at the University of Kansas –ROCK CHALK! For the last 6 months I lived in Roanoke, VA completing an internship at the VA Medical Center, but now I’m home. My time in Roanoke is the direct reason I even contemplated a thru-hike.

2.) I am postponing finishing my Master’s in Music Therapy to undertake this thru hike. While I’ve finished coursework and am credential to music therapize the world, I won’t be able to actually call myself a Master until I finish my thesis. It’s been a mad dash to complete the first three chapters of it (Introduction, Review of Lit, and Methodology) before I hit the trail and I hope to edit during zeros. We’ll see how that goes…

3.) I rowed competitively all through grad school. After an exciting four years of being besties with Ronald McDonald and Natty Light, I felt I needed a lifestyle change. Cue rowing. Great rowers (and I am not a great rower by any means) have more than just sheer speed, they’re mentally tough as well. While at KU it was a huge part of my life and after moving to Virginia I left lost. I was in great shape but what I liked most of crew was the camaraderie with others. It was often brutal, but you shared the misery with others. For some reason, brutal workouts alone just aren’t as “fun.” However, while I wasn’t a great rower, I was great at the side eye. Example:


4.) I am fortunate to have a wonderful family. My family has been incredibly supportive, even if my mother says I’m giving her grey hairs.


I have a younger brother too. But he’s too cool to ever take pictures with us.

5.) And why am I doing this? (in short)

  • I want to know that I can.
  • I want to reaffirm that I can live without all of these things I need.
  • If I don’t do it now, I probably won’t be able to in the next 30 years.
  • I will get to meet new people and create awesome new stories.
  • It provides the opportunity to create a whole new set of skills.
  • It scares me.
  • I like the idea of spending so much time in nature.
  • I’m looking to fill the void that rowing has left in my life.

I am more than thrilled to be part of this community. May have bragged about it to some people. If you ask me, I’ll deny it though.

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Comments 2

  • Caleb : Mar 8th

    Go Royals!

  • Avery Smith : Mar 20th

    Me and my wife shop at your mothers store, and I have been a long time outdoors fanatic and survival enthusiasts. I think it’s really inspiring that you are taking the time to do this. Looking forward to reading about the experiences you have and that trials and tribulations. I bet you return a changed person. Not good, or bad, just a person who has changed views from prior to the trip. Stay safe!


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