Are you hiking by yourself?

My response… “Yes. Well, kinda…No.” This is the number one asked question by those aware of my decision to hike the AT. With my response, it usually evokes a gasp or a surprised look- which can be discouraging at times. I must continuously remind myself that their reactions reflect their fears and concerns, and I can choose to take them on as my own or just smile.  I try not to think that their doubts are because I am a woman and the horror stories one can come up with being a woman alone in the woods…but I know that’s not too far off. The bottom line that is difficult for them to comprehend, is that I will never actually be alone. Literally speaking, yes it is true, I am not starting at Springer Mountain with anyone on April 1st, but I will however, be joined with hundreds of other individual hikers embarking on their own journey that day for hopefully the next 5-6 months. Then figuratively speaking, no, I will not be alone, I will be part of a community, a bond, an energy, a confidence, and a bad ass lifestyle.

This is why I am hiking solo:

  • I want to be uncensored.
  • I want to only worry about myself and my material and emotional needs.
  • I want to go at my own pace.
  • I want to be with myself.
  • I want to have my own story and my own accomplishment.
  • I want to meet new people.
  • I want to listen to only my body.
  • I want to be quiet.
  • I want to be on my own time.
  • I don’t want to compromise.
  • I don’t want to share.
  • I don’t want to compete.
  • I don’t want to upset anyone.

Yes, some of this IS selfish, but that is OK. I am hiking my own hike, damn it!

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Comments 1

  • dave : Sep 6th

    haha, sorry if this was meant to be a serious post, but I found the last bit funny.

    Also, I’m taking notes for what to say when people ask me about my plans to do a thru-hike,

    you are very inspiring thus far.

    from a hopeful future thru hiker.


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