My Last Post

Better late than never. I last posted on The Trek at the end of the 100 mile wilderness on the flop portion of my thru-hike back in 2021. I did not post again, leaving you to the impression that I dropped off trail. I did not. I kept on hiking and finished my Thru Hike in Port Clinton, PA on November 14, 2021 exactly 7 months from my start date.
I thought I would provide a few highlights of my last few months. Maine was, by far, my favorite state. The 100 Mile Wilderness Area was beautiful and challenging and almost prepared me for Southern Maine and the Whites of New Hampshire. I also had the privilege of meeting and then hiking with Nimblewill Nomad and Odie for much of this section of the trail. We met at The Cabin hostel in East Andover. The hostel was being run by Honey who amazed me with her energy and work ethic. She was still cooking for hikers and running off to the Sam’s Club 75 miles away for groceries at age 89!

Hiking with a legend, Nimblewill Nomad, was a gift. He finished his hike in Connecticut and currently holds the record as the oldest AT Thru-hiker. I saw him tackle and conquer terrain that made me tremble. He took on steep granite faces with just his trekking poles and his determination holding him in place. He hiked with the least amount of gear possible (I could lift his pack with a pinkie finger) to get the job done. Odie was hiking with him and carrying a huge load which I couldn’t pick up with both arms! He dropped us off at trailheads and then hiked in to meet us after positioning The Bus at the pick up point. He is the most skilled woodsman I have ever met. Odie made a fire out of soaking wet wood that I am still in awe of and grateful for to this day.
If you ever have to be stuck in the wilderness Odie is who you want by your side. When Odie told me I was part of his Tramily, I felt better than I had on top of Katahin. I had reached a pinnacle that I didn’t ever presume to summit. I was a Thru-hiker and while still short of my milage goal, I felt, in that moment, that I had earned the title.


The rest of New England and back to PA was a mixture of solo hiking and short term connections with section hikers and a few dwindling flip floppers. I met up with Yo-Yo (another flip flopper) and we hung together through some cold rain in Massachusetts!

I ran into all my NOBO friends in Southern Maine and New Hampshire! I ran into Squeeze and Scout (the women I was hiking with when I had to leave trail for my Mom’s surgery before I flipped) on the side of Mt. Washington. I found out later they summited Katahdin on the last day it was open.

By the last month of my hike, many of the few hostels in the North were closed. I mostly hiked solo in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and northern PA. I stayed in the shelters because the days were shorter and it saved time to not have to set up and pack up my tent. The AT through New York and New Jersey is nicknamed the Deli-belt because there are many options for deli food in this section. This is great at first and I found that by ordering a large Italian sub I could save half for my dinner. This was necessary because while there were a lot of Deli’s there were very few outfitters so freeze dried food was no longer readily available. The hiking got progressively easier, and by the last month I was doing 24 mile days with no zeros. I was in a race to beat the snow and get to Port Clinton on a weekend when my daughter could sneak away from Med School to meet me. I made it seven months to the day of my start date. My daughter hiked with me for the last day and I finished the trail 23 pounds lighter in weight but gained much more in confidence, memories and friends. Overall, it was one hell of a trek!



See you in the woods!

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Comments 4

  • thetentman : May 18th

    Congrats on finishing and posting.


  • John "Tercius" Rutkowski : May 18th

    You go!

    I’ve lived and walked all over. Mostly short walks, but I have done all of the terrain in your last section.

    Carry on, keep walking. And as back from Spain “Buen Camino” or Ultreia!

    Walk your own walk

  • Nature Boy : May 20th

    A lovely post – many thanks for coming back to do so. What an excellent adventure! I hope you have had more since your hike of the AT! I look forward to the day when I can be out for the long adventures… Hike on, Kat!
    (Hike on, Faceplant…)

  • suzanne demirjian : Jun 5th

    hello – thanks for the great post on 100 mile wilderness. my brother in law is a section hiker and is today (June 5, 2024) beginning the 100 mile and at the end of completing the AT and his 10+ year journey. I am wondering about what animals you saw while out there. I love your photos and your wiring – so glad I ran across your stuff!


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