The Trek Bloggers

The following awesome people are the official bloggers of the The Trek.   In other words, they’re the renegade trail-folk who will be blogging their thru-hikes right here on  Their job is to be adventurous and share their experiences in vivid detail.  Our job is to live vicariously and envy their existence.

Want to be a Trek Blogger?  You can: apply here

Want to write for this site, but aren’t thru-hiking?  We’re always looking for more backpackers with a passion for writing. Find out more about the The Trek Writers.


A.J. Matthews

Hi everyone! My name's A.J. and I'm hiking the Appalachian Trail this year. A long time ago, in a galaxy far away, my parents took me and my siblings on a roadtrip through the Smoky Mountains. I remember walking up Clingman's Dome and my dad telling me about thru-hikers for the first time. I remember my 10 year old self thinking how crazy people must be for wanting to walk all the way from Georgia to Maine. Fast forward to now and after completing college, military service, and working a mediocre job, I've found there's nothing else I'd rather be doing this year. Join me for the ride as I share the stupid things I do and enjoy the trip of a lifetime!

Aaron Owens

Hello hikertrash foodies! Clinical dietitian by profession but spend my days dreaming of the outdoors. My blog focuses on experimentation with trail friendly ultralight foods, meal preparation, menu planning and resupply strategies. Hope you enjoy following my culinary experiments while thru hiking the PCT starting 3/26/17.

Abby King

Hey readers! Thanks for tuning in. I'll be writing here about my upcoming PCT hike. I hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2011, the John Muir Trail in 2012, and the Wonderland Trail in 2013. I worked, hiked, skied, and played in the White Mountains in New Hampshire and Maine for a while but now I'm living in Tahoe City, CA where I work as a backcountry ski guide and environmental policy advocate. I am SO excited to hike from Mexico to Canada along the Sierras this Spring.

Abby Rachwalski

Hi, I’m Abby! I was born and bred in the suburbs of Chicago, near the cornfields of central Illinois, and next to the greatest of the Great Lakes. But, at 24 years old, I remain conflicted by a love for higher elevations, sequoia giants, and dramatic vistas. So obviously the logical solution is to venture out on a 2,650 mile long jaunt along the height of the Western United States to embrace that love, right? In April I’ll be taking a hiatus from my job as a nurse to the tiny humans of this world, making my parents officially empty nesters (you’re welcome, Mom & Dad), and pursuing another dream of mine: a thru hike of the Pacific Crest Trail with my best friend, Annie. AND I CAN’T WAIT!

Adam Ryan

Hi. I'm Griz. I have bilateral optic neuritis and have less than 5% of my visual field remaining. My passion is hiking. Over the course of 2015-16' I completed hiking the Appalachian trail. This year, I have my sights set even higher. I'll be hiking the PCT!


Howdy, everyone! My name is Adeline, 22, and a photojournalist by trade and writer by heart. I will be stepping off from Maine in July of 2017 for a southbound thru hike. Should be interesting ^_^

Alex and Amanda

Hello, friends! Our names are Alex and Amanda and we are out to rediscover life. For the longest time we defined our success and happiness by the lives we lived in the kitchen. One day, we realized that in order to come full circle as the people we want to be, we needed to leave everything that made us at that very time behind. Follow us and let's take this spiritual journey together!

Alex Pellerin

Hey everyone! I'm Alex and I'll be heading down to Georgia in May. I'll be skipping my college graduation to start my NOBO thru-hike with my mom! I'm a 22 year old, college senior, from NH- the Whites are my home. I love hiking, doing cool things, eating snacks, and long walks in the woods...(so I guess that's how I got here, huh?)

Alexa Shapiro

Hey friends! My name is Alexa. I was born and raised in Southern CA before, in 2015, I picked up my life and moved to the frigid woods of Northern Minnesota with my partner, Cooper. The two of us met while doing a year of volunteer service in 2014 and spent our first date on a cross country road trip from Sacramento CA to Portland ME. We love being on the move, which is why we eagerly agreed to attempt a thru hike of the Pacific Crest Trail together. When not on the road or working, you can find me in the outdoors hiking or climbing, or teaching somatic yoga. We'll be stepping foot on the trail starting April 24 going NOBO!

Alli Huggins

Hey I'm Alli! A native Marylander residing in New Haven, CT with my boyfriend and our rescue cat, Penelope. I am a recent graduate of Yale Divinity School and an alum of the University of Pittsburgh. I am hiking the AT NOBO with two other gals, Sydney and Shelby! I love a full glass of cheap champagne, binge watching HGTV, and sauntering in the woods. Hike on!

Amber Kostka

I'm Amber. I'm a born and raised beach bum relocating to the mountains for stint on the Appalachian Trail. I'll be thru-hiking NOBOish beginning April 2017. Yes, I've read Wild. No, I'm not bringing a gun. I am, however, hoping to raise as much as I can for Alzheimer's Research on behalf of Cure Alzheimer's Fund.

Amber Redfield

Hello, folks, and welcome to my little basecamp here at The Trek. My name is Amber and I'm just a crazy Adventurer, Photographer, and Naturalist always looking to experience and document my explorations around the world as I go. When I'm not backpacking, I clean dinosaur fossils and teach Earth Sciences at a Natural History Museum. Get ready for some beautiful scenery and Steve Irwin-esque wildlife videos! And please feel free to ask questions and connect with my during my hike. Cheers!


Hi all, I'm Pup, a nature-loving nomad-at-heart and Druid-in-training from England, hiking the AT NOBO in 2017 with my amazing partner. I can't wait to get my paws on the trail in April! I enjoy talking nonsense, making connections with new people and spending time around trees and I have high hopes that the AT will provide all three in abundance... I also blog at Happy Trails!

Anna Zimmerman

My name is Anna. I am an 2017 Appalachian Trail thru-hiker. I'm not a writer but am a photographer and I'm trying to live this one life to the fullest.

Anne Baker

Hi! I'm Anne, a North Carolina native now living in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia. I'm putting my career on hold this year to hike the Appalachian Trail, and I'll be attempting a flip-flop thru-hike from Harpers Ferry beginning May 1. I can't wait to share my journey with you!


Hi! I'll be thru-hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in 2017. My favourite place to be is outside, especially in the mountains and in the ocean. I am a scientist, writer, actor, traveller and sea turtle whisperer. I am also a student of the universe trying to find an answer to the ultimate question "Who am I...really?"

Ashley and Zach George

Hi! We're Ashley and Zach George from Cincinnati, Ohio. We're 26 & 28, have been together since high school, and were married in October of 2015. We have been working in the professional world for about 5 years now and have quickly realized that working 9a-5p, five days a week until we're 60 just isn't the life for us. We're heading out NOBO on the Appalachian Trail in March of 2017 looking for an adventure and hoping to figure out what the heck comes next.

Ashley Hill

I have suffered with depression on and off for years but recently came out of this severe low point with a brand new attitude to tackle hardships and live life to the fullest. I am doing this by attempting a thru-hike of the AT in 2017. Currently, I am working two jobs as a server/bartender to pay for gear and add to my savings. I was raised deep in the Blue Ridge mountains of Virginia and after I (hopefully) complete this insane endeavor, I plan on settling down on my parents' farm and living in a self-sustainable manner.

Barbara Richey

Hello My name is Barbara. I live in the Midwest but, spend time in Southwest Florida because of the trails. I retired the end of 2016 and now plan to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail. I taught school for a number of years and retired from the military after serving 23 years. I am a vegan and I'll make an effort to maintain a healthy lifestyle on the trail. My other passions include photography, gardening and herbalism.

Barry Hudson

I'm a Nature addict hiker/backpacker who is doing a 2017 flip flop AT thru hike starting NOBO at Harper's Ferry 4/23. At age 55, hiking has changed my life and I know that this thru hike will be truly magical... even the miserable times.


Hey! My name's Becca and my adventures have taken me from the Amazon River to the Andes Mountains. Next up on my adventure list is an AT thru hike! Jesus, rescue dogs, essential oils & hiking are the delights of my soul!

Becky Booroojian

Hi, I'm Becky. I'm quitting my job and moving out of my apartment in San Francisco to hike the Appalachian Trail in 2017. My motivation for this blog is to reassure my grandmother I'm not dead while on the trail.

Bethany Varner

Howdy! I'm Bethany from Houston, Texas. Ever since learning about the AT a little over a year ago I've been planning my hike, but i'm still having trouble trying to figure out how to keep a pint of blue bell ice cream in my pack without it melting! Just kidding (sort of). It's slightly crazy that people voluntarily hike ~2,190 miles, but hey my mom always says that I'm a nut, so I guess it's the perfect adventure for me!

Big Jim

Howdy!!! I'm Big Jim and I am a thru-hiker for the class of 2017. But, I am a little different. I am actually starting from Panama City, Florida and hiking all the way to the Canadian border and weather permitting continuing hiking the International AT into Canada, Newfoundland and to the trails end at Belle Island. I am walking with a purpose. As a recovering addict alcoholic for over 34 years, and this being my first time ever sober in my adult life, I am taking on this journey impressed by God to walk. This is a spiritual journey of self discovery that I pray will bring a message to all affected by addiction in any way that there is HOPE! There is LIFE after addiction! There is a new life after recovery.

Caleb Bonner

Hey I'm Caleb! I'm Thru Hiking NOBO starting February 25th, 2017! I'm a backpacker, kayaker, climber, and fisherman who loves all things outdoors. I enjoy good burritos and craft beer. I hope to keep up with my journey, people I've met, and my gear through this blog! If you would like to help me out any way with my hike feel free to get in contact with me! "Adventure is not outside man, it's within"

Carolyn Burman

Howda! My name is Carolyn Burman and I am an AT Nobo thru-hiker hopeful beginning my sojourn on April 15, 2017. My dream to hike the Appalachian Trail began two years ago when I became utterly and over-the-top obsessed with the idea of hiking from Georgia to Maine. For whatever reason, walking from Georgia to my home of New England was exactly the kind of insanity I had been yearning for. In the beginning of my planning, I researched what it would take to rescue a Chihuahua puppy to raise as my hiking companion on the trail, strapping it to the front of my pack like a newborn baby. Unfortunately, after several hours of research on the importance of keeping your pack light, the dream of the Chihuahua faded, but my dream of hiking the AT remained! Anyways, I look forward to sleeping on the earth every night and feeling no guilt about the junk food I will be consuming along the way. Onward and Upward!

Chelsea Bates

I love good wine and the great outdoors. Originally from Atlanta, Georgia. When I grow up, I want to be a gypsy.

Chris G.

2017 AT NOBO. Did normal stuff up until this point in life, college, job for 5ish years, and other assorted marginally interesting stuff. Born near the Blue Ridge Mts in VA and spent a lot of time wandering around the AT and other hiking trails. Plan is to head north early April.

Christina Rose

Hi there – I’m Christina! I’m a wife, health coach, marathon runner and soon-to-be thru hiker on the Pacific Crest Trail. I’m prone to wander – seriously, I can’t sit still. I was born and raised in Olympia, WA, graduated from Montana State University – Bozeman, and for the past 3 years, my husband and I have been living an adventurous life in the beautiful state of Wyoming. My motivation for this blog comes from 2 Timothy 1:7 – which calls each and every one of us to be bold. Whether that’s facing your fear, taking a leap of faith, or responding to the call of adventure. Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail is a dream I’ve had ever since I met my husband. After four years of saying NO, this year, we’re saying YES. Together, backpacking and being outdoors has become an important part of our lives, our faith and will forever remain a priority in our marriage. I hope as you continue to follow me in my wanderings that you will be inspired to go after your dreams. They beckon for a reason. ✌ Christina Pacific Crest Trail Start Date 5.4.17

Clayton Barker

Cockblock Moses here. A.T. SOBO '16 PCT '17 I'm blunt and do things my own way. YouTube: Cockblock Hikes

Colin Baker

From Austin, TX. Decided to hike the AT a year ago for a new adventure in life. I look forward to the experience and challenges ahead of me. I see it as another growing moment in life. I'm certainly excited to meet new people and friends from all over. Can't wait to get out there.

David Stasiak

I'm 22 years young from a small town in the great state of Alabama, home of my momma, the greatest college football program ever (Roll Tide), and some of the dankest BBQ you'll ever have the privelege of gnawing on. My community is unlike any place I've been in America. We express a genuine interest in the wellbeing of our neighbors, and as cliche as it might sound, we'd give the shirts off our backs to ANYONE in need. I should feel right at home in the AT community. "This is the beginning of a new day. God has given me this day to use as I will. I can waste it or use it for good. What I do today is very important because I am exchanging a day of my life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever, leaving something in its place I have traded for it. I want it to be gain, not loss — good, not evil. Success, not failure in order that I shall not forget the price I paid for it." -- Paul W. "Bear" Bryant

Deane Giordano

Hey, y’all. You can call me Ruby Throat. I live in the Western North Carolina mountains and I’m planning a flip flop hike (because I never do anything in the “right” order). I’ll start with a new moon on April 26, NOBO from Grayson Highlands State Park (because….ponies!) I’m a card-carrying tree-hugger and a natural born nomad. If you see someone smelling wild roses and marveling at flamboyant fungi along the way, that will be me. Oh, yeah... my knees are totally looking forward to hiking the White Mountains. Please visit me at, too.


I'm Joe "EarthTone" Harold. I have always had an interest in the outdoors and backpacking. That interest has morphed into an obsession with the A.T. and my wife (LoGear) and I will be feeding that obsession starting in April of 2017. I'm a 30 year veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard and have just finished up as the Manager at the A.T. Museum in Gardners, PA. You can also follow my life adventures at my personal blog: See you out on the trail.

Elizabeth Connolly

Hey guys- my names Liz. I once gave a snack bag to an Irish man, who was hiking the Appalachian Trail. It changed my life. I'm settled cozy in Southern Maine, and engaged to my best friend! Yoga, reiki, rivers and mountains soothe my soul, but cider and icecream also help with that. I have dreams of hiking the trail and living in the woods.

Emily Ben

Emily - trail name TBC - I'm thru hiking the PCT in 2017. I'm a hiker, boulderer and aspiring filmmaker currently working in digital. I live in London, UK so my journey to the trailhead is a long one and planning for my hike has been a complicated affair at times. I'll be writing about my experiences as an international hiker and as a solo female hiker.

Emily Elizabeth

I’m Emily! I enjoy climbing trees, cultivating and sharing love for the Earth and its inhabitants wherever I go, and being a total goofball. This June I’ll be EMbarking upon a SOBO hike after I wrap up my final year of nursing school. Planning on hiking my own hike whilst on a gluten free, dairy free, soy free, specific grain diet due to food allergies. I’ll be sharing the tales of my travels and my experiences as a young womEM in the forest here. Basically the mountains and the wilderness have been calling me for as long as I can remember and finally now I can honor their calls. I mean, how can you say no to bigfoot?

Emily McCambridge

Hello! I'm Emily, and I'll be doing a flip flop AT thru-hike in April 2017 with my boyfriend Dan and our 1-year-old lab pup Oliver. I grew up a couple miles off the AT in northern NJ, went to college in Washington, DC, and for the past three years have been in the Chicago area, and I'm very excited to leave cities & suburbia behind to live in the woods for half a year! We'll be heading south from Delaware Water Gap April 3rd, so if you're a NOBO hiker in 2017 we'll likely cross paths.

Eric Guldberg

Hello! My name is Eric Guldberg and I'm from the Great Lake State. Ann Arbor, MI to be exact. I will be NOBO thru hiking the A.T starting March 1st, 2017. I am hiking to raise money for the National Brain Tumor Society in honor of my father who has brain cancer. Before I do that I am finishing up a business degree from Hope College. I hope you all follow me on my journey from A2 --> GA --> ME.

Erica Notini

Hello world! I'm Erica, 23 years old from New Hampshire. I grew up hiking the Whites with my mom and brothers, which I'm sure is why I'm a completely kick ass human today (thanks mom). I'm also a runner, an almost college grad, and soon to be NOBO thru hiker! I'm wicked stoked to be able to share this adventure here with all of you lovely people. Happy hiking!


I first heard the trail call my name shortly after graduating high school, and after just a few weekend hikes, I could no longer keep myself from a thru-hike. Between medical waivers and appeals for the Navy, being called in for 14 hour shifts at a gas station, and all the other stresses of the daily grind, a 2,600 mile hike sounds like a great break.

Forrest Radarian

I'm Forrest and I'll be traveling SOBO on the AT in 2017. I'm currently an AP Environmental Science, AP Biology, and Biology high school teacher in Phoenix, Arizona. My wife and I are into long distance cycling and trail running. I've done a self-supported bike tour from Canada to Mexico, I've thru-hiked the John Muir Trail, the Loowit Trail around Mt. St. Helen's, and Buckskin Gulch/Paria Canyon in Northern AZ/Southern UT. Wilderness conservation and environmental justice are my passion. Building an environmental ethos in my students, as well as getting them out into the wild, gives me meaning. Hiking the AT has literally been a goal of mine since I was in elementary school. This thru-hike will be an opportunity to share the wild with my students back in AZ, push myself physically, do an adventure with my wife, and be in the wilderness in the way it always transforms me.

Funky Stuff

I am a 23 year old kid born and raised in South Bend, IN. Graduated college in 2016 and survived 2 months in an accounting internship. Since then I haven't spent more than 5 weeks in the same state. I am addicted to road trips and have been to 49 states in my 93 Buick (help me get her to Hawaii). I make money when I am home by substitute teaching and scalping tickets at every Notre Dame football game. I love having fun, playing games, helping others and listening to good stories. My best friend rose from the grave one time (true story). I am hiking the Appalachian Trail NoBo starting March 26th and taking a couple weeks off the trail in May to go on a mission trip to Guatemala to help some children there (currently accepting financial support).

Gail Barrett

Hi, everyone! I’m a 62 year old romance novelist who has decided to get out from behind my desk and do a flip-flop AT thru-hike starting in April 2017. I admit I’m both thrilled and terrified at the thought of taking on a challenge this big. I have no backpacking skills, no survival expertise, and absolutely no reason to believe I can do this other than a healthy dose of stubbornness that has always helped me succeed. I figure this will either be the adventure of a lifetime or the dumbest thing I’ve ever done. I hope you’ll cheer me along as I try to find out!

Gary Stell

I'm a 67 year old retiree from a long career in the Oil and Natural Gas industry. I am a native Oklahoman, I have 5 children and 11 grandchildren. I have always been more comfortable in the woods than any other place. I love God and all kinds of outdoor activities, I hunt, fish, kayak, play golf, hike, camp and enjoy God's creation.

Gas Monkey

Greetings everyone! My name is Ian 'Gas Monkey' Matta, and I'll be hiking NOBO come March of 2017. I'm currently finishing up my degree in Visual Effects at the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia with my graduation set for March 14th. (perfect timing.) I first caught the thru hiking bug back in 2010 during a 10 day section hike through the Saddlebacks and Bigelows. Since then I have had the opportunity to hike the 100 mile wilderness, portions of the White Mountains, the whole of Georgia, and countless other mountains on both the east and west coast. I return to the trail because of the serenity and non-aggression. I am a happy guy by nature and the AT provides an escape from all things stress, politics, and judgement. I'm ready to leave my worries at the doorstep, and live life out on the loose for a bit.

Hannah Bosel

Hey! I'm Hannah. I'm a 2017 AT solo NOBO from The-Middle-of-Nowhere, Ohio. I love trees, Harry Potter, summer camp, donuts, airports, dogs, lists, and just about ten-million other things. I'm taking a semester off from college to thru-hike and figure out where I'm supposed to go next.

Heather P

Hey howdy! My husband and I will be starting our NOBO thru attempt in March of 2017. At present, I live in Washington state and I work as an occupational therapist. I am a lover of documentaries, peppermint everything, my sweet dog, and early bedtimes. Louise (our dog) is such a joy, but she won't be coming along with us. My wanderlust is the product of being raised in the military; I don't think I will ever see enough places or meet enough people. My husband had the hare-brained idea to hike the Appalachian Trail...I took that idea and ran with it. Follow along with our adventure! Happy hiking!

Heather Q

Hey there, nice to see you here. My name's Heather and I'm a travel junkie. I love anything and everything new, all the time. My husband loves everything the same, all the time. I know for him, once we do something for the first time, it is already our routine. We love each other infinitely and are looking forward to do the same thing repeatedly every day in new places by hiking the AT in 2017. My husband, Joel, is the social media guru so my social media links take to you his accounts of tracking our adventure!

Henry Slocum

Hi! I’m Henry, aka Righteous. I spent the summers of 2011 and 2012 as a backcountry campsite caretaker in the White Mountains. I couldn’t resist the temptation any longer, and in 2013 I completed a SOBO thru hike of the AT. I am currently a professional bicycle mechanic living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Since leaving the AT, cycling and bikepacking expeditions have worked to fill the gaps in my life. Now, I’m preparing to thru hike the PCT, SOBO once again! I’m always plotting more adventures, including long-distance bikepacking routes.


My name is Teri (Hoozurmama) and I'm attempting a NOBO thru hike. My hometown is St. Louis (Go Cardinals!) but I've call Texas home for the last 20 years. After my hike I'm headed to North Carolina. I've spent 32 years in the corporate world but my most important job is being a mom. I'll keep that job but my new "day" job is slaying mountains between GA and ME. I love God, my family, Diet Coke, birds singing (not crackles screaming), the smell of fresh cut grass, baseball, soccer (well basically all sports), Blue Bell ice cream, The Waltons, and the color purple.

James Shepherd

My name is James. Along with my wife, Rebekah, we hope to spend 2017 rendering the word 'aspiring' no longer necessary when describing us as thru-hikers on the Appalachian Trail.

Jeff Santos

Hi. I´m Jeff Santos. I´m from Brazil. When I was a kid I had to walk a league to visit my grandma. A league is around 3.5 miles. I was 7 years old. She lived in a village called Boavista. It´s nice view in Portuguese. That´s what I expected during my thru-hike: nice views. If you don´t speak Portuguese you can use Google Translator to read more at . If you prefer pictures and videos, follow me on Instagram or YouTube. Cheers.

Jennifer Giddens

Recent Auburn Grad headed off for a NOBO hike in March. Hiking to raise funds for Pediatric Cancer Research. - Travel light, live light, spread the light, be the light - Yogi Bhajan

Jeremy Gottschalk

Jeremy G is a military veteran and enthusiastic hiker. Starting in Hawaii, Jeremy began the Barefoot Hikers, a social group aimed at trail restoration, history and conservation while building friendships. With some 300 hike events over nine years, the group reached 17,000 Barefoot Hikers without injury or fatalities (very rare in Hawaii). In 2016, Jeremy transitioned into the civilian world with hopes of continuing his hobby as more of a lifestyle. He set out to cover two of the National Scenic Trails, AT and the FNST. Follow along with the OG Hawaii 'Barefoot Hiker' as he attempts the AT!

Jessica Tinios

Just a girl from New Hampshire who has dreamed of having her own epic adventure since viewing "The Neverending Story" at the age of 3. In March I will begin my thru hike of the AT from Springer to Katahdin. Follow me and my friends as we embark on our odyssey through the Appalachian Mountains!

Jim McNelis

Greetings fellow hikers! In brief, my name is Jim, I'm 39, and I am originally from Manassas, Virginia. I moved to San Francisco in my early 30s and now live in Truckee, California, which is just north of Lake Tahoe. I consider myself experienced at hiking and camping, but not an expert. I'll be attempting my thru hike with an ultralight setup, and in that category, I am a beginner. Join me as I figure out the nuances of thru hiking with as little as possible along this 2190.3 mile walk.

Jody Chancey

My name is Jody (no trail name yet). I will be hiking from the beaches of Destin, Florida all the way to Canada. I will be traveling most of that distance via the Appalachian Trail. I currently work as a Database Administrator/Web Developer for CACI, Inc.

Juliana Chauncey

Hi I'm Juliana, I'm 25 and from New York, and getting ready to hike the PCT starting on April 3rd, 2017. I've road tripped across the country 12 times, and am excited to switch it up and go border-to-border on foot!

Justin and Wella Jay

Wella and Justin are two former US Army officers that have been living in Alaska for the past four years. We have been afforded the incredible opportunity to thru hike as part of the Warrior Expeditions team in 2017! We look forward to sharing our journey with friends and family as we make our way North!

Kai Meka

Hi there! I'm Kai, I am an adventurer, and an aspiring travel blogger/photographer who currently resides in Southern Maine. I am going to attempt an ultralite SOBO thru-hike of the AT, starting about a month after my 20th birthday in July 2017, with my dog, Cheyenne, joining me for as much of the trail as possible. The ultimate goal is to hike over 2000 miles, and to have as much fun, and as many new experiences as possible in the process!

Kate Gewehr

Hello, my name is Kate! I'm 41 years old and currently live in Madison, Wisconsin with my partner, Sweetie and my cat, SmallCat. I also frequently spend time with my partner Ginger Dragon, and he will be both driving me to the trail and shipping me food. I'm not trying to conceal anyone's real name, but I thought that in a space where trail names are normal, it would be more fun to refer to my loved ones back at home by the nicknames I frequently use for them. I've also decided to give myself my own trail name before setting out: Pét-Nat (after a natural sparkling style of wine beloved by wine geeks like me). I'm looking forward to heading back to the East Coast, where I was born and raised, to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail. As I once wrote in a dating site profile, if there are two ways about it, I like it at least both ways, so it shouldn't be surprising that I'm flip-flopping so I can hike first northbound and then southbound. My hike has been delayed due to a medical emergency with SmallCat, and it's hard to predict when she will be back in good enough shape to leave her, but hopefully I'll be starting from Shenandoah National Park in mid-May 2017 about a month later than originally planned.

Katie Eckman

I will be hiking on the Appalachian Trail in April 2017. I will start in Georgia and hike northward. Hoping to share some of that experience with you through this blog!

Katie Sandage

Hey, I'm Katie and I'm thru hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2017. I enjoy long walks through the mud and eating dessert first. In my spare time I like to nerd out on nature and occasionally shoot things.


I'm a mid-lifer who has hiked The Whites and parts of Utah, Arizona, Hawaii and Ireland. I love the outdoors, especially winter in New England (although I haven't given winter in the West a try...yet). My "mid-life-crisis" is requiring that I quit my job and hike the Appalachian Trail this year and I think I'm going to listen to THAT voice since the timid-safe voice hasn't done much for me thus far. I've been reading so much - especially the blogs on The Trek and I can't wait to meet some of this year's thru-hikers!! I'm a little undecided right now about where to start but I'm leaning on flip-flopping, starting at Harper's Ferry. Anyone else?

Keturamarie Lennick

Hey everyone! I'm Ketura a.k.a Littlefoot. I'm a 22 year old from the beautiful state of Arizona. I start hiking mid April from Amicalola Falls, and I hope to see all of you guys out there! Thanks for taking interest in my hike, and I hope you follow along!


Trail name: Krispies. Hiker, traveler, swim instructor and author of Hold for Hiker Trash, a novel about Trail Angels on the PCT. I call Buffalo, NY my home base, where I’m currently planning an eastbound hike of the Finger Lakes Trail and a southbound hike of the Long Trail.

Kirsten Fraude

Hey! I'm Kirsten and will be hiking the AT NOBO this March. Hiking the AT has been a dream of mine since I was a little kid and I'm so excited to go on the adventure of a lifetime. I'm 23, a photographer, upstate newyorker, lover of nature, recent college grad, and have absolutely no idea what I want to do with the rest of my life now that I no longer go to school everyday. But I'm hoping to figure that out in the 6-ish months I'll be hiking.

Koty Sapp

Just a guy with a camera in search of adventure and a desire to inspire others. No Trail name yet, but I know one will come soon enough!


Until I am given a trail name you can call me Kristin. I am 31 and by no means am I an expert hiker but I am more passionate about hiking than just about anything else in my life. I am a Maryland Native but moved to Nashville, Tennessee in July, 2013 for some change. My time off the trail is spent Bartending or traveling across the country on tour with my husband Dylan while he plays music. I lost my dad, Lou, unexpectedly in January 2016, and he is the reason I'm hiking the trail. he introduced the trail to me and the concept of thru-hiking it. When he died he took a big part of me with him. After a year of heartache and grieving, I'm looking to fill that hole with all the beauty of nature and the beautiful people I meet on the trail.

KT Saunders

I answer to Katie, or KT, or Penny (when the whisky kicks in). I’m leaving Texas to hike NOBO in 2017. I have 2 gay cats, I like awkward situations, I speak in sarcasm, and if you see someone talking to a squirrel trying to convince it to be their friend, it’s probably me. Please stop and say hi!

Kylie Torrence

Hey everyone! I'm Kylie. 22 years old from Georgia. I'm an AT NOBO starting on March 27th. You'll probably find me with a camera in hand. I had more written here but it sounded like a dating profile so instead I'm keeping it short and sweet! Happy hiking! :D


Zero to Hero. I've only completed day hikes before planning the AT Thru Hike. After a friend talked me into hiking with him who has since dropped out, I'll be going Solo. I've always lived the life of adventure -- surfing, skydiving, snowboarding, skiing, day hiking, camping, etc. Now I'm looking AT my next adventure -- Thru Hiking! Also, I'm hiking for a cause - the Air Force Enlisted Village ( Please sponsor me at:


Hiking 2,189 for Girl Power! As a solo female trekker with little backpacking experience, I am setting out to show women that they (and I) can do anything. I always imagined a thru hike with a partner, but since none showed up I am going solo and stoked about it. I'm raising money for SheLift, which empowers women with physical disabilities through outdoor activity. Because conquering mountains leads to conquering mountains. Let's go. DONATE

Leila Pike

Hi. I'm Leila. I'll be tracking my musings and progress here for my 2017 thru-hike of the PCT. I'm from Maine! (Which deserves an exclamation mark). I'm a general outdoor enthusiast, but this will be my first time spending five to six months outdoors. Luckily, I'll have my ever-knowledgeable and experienced friend, Abby, with me (a fellow trek blogger - check her out). Follow me here!

Linda Vance

Hey everyone! I'm Linda, a 65-year old research ecologist who had a plan to retire and trade field work for hiking. But you know what they say about the best-laid plans.... So instead, I'll be starting a flip flop the first week in April, and then will take a little time off after Maine to collect baseline data on fire-affected wetlands in Montana. I know, it's a tough life. I'm looking forward to the Trail, but sometimes I wonder exactly why I need to spend so much of my life sleeping on the ground.

Linnea Delucchi

My name is Linnea and I am one of the many love child's of our great God Zeus. I kinda wish my mom was Hera, but my mortal mom is pretty tight. In reality, I grew up in the swanky suburban town of Fair Oaks, along the American River. I spent my summers floating down the river, backpacking, day hiking, and swimming back and forth too many times in a 25 yard pool. In the winters, we skied North Lake Tahoe every weekend we could make it up. That was before the gnarly drought and currently gnarly winter that plagued California. After four years with my nose shoved in too-heavy textbooks at UC Berkeley, I decided to ditch the "real world" for a bit to be a ski instructor at Copper Mountain in Colorado. It's only been a little addicting and opened my eyes to the world of outdoor employment. I have worked the winters to be able to play in the summers: travel and now hike for a really, really long time. I am going to attempt to NOBO the PCT this summer, despite the surplus of frozen water that is covering the Sierras. I plan on eventually going back to school for a Master's in Social Work and Education, with the end all goal to somehow provide educational and emotional support to youth at risk. Until then, I will continue sliding on snerw and exploring the four zillion places that are on my bucket list.

Lion Heart

Hi! I'm Lion Heart and I love all things hiking. I'll be thru-hiking NoBo on the PCT in 2017. After being diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2006, I launched a more active lifestyle with a refreshed perspective on Life. I thru-hiked the Pacific Crest Trail in 2009 and 2013. In 2015, I hiked 700 miles of the Continental Divide Trail. When I'm not thru-hiking, I work as a science teacher, perform as a percussionist, and rally for bicycle advocacy. No matter where my footprints fall or my bicycle tires roll, I believe in treading lightly on this planet and honoring my connection to all things.

Lisa Howatt

Hi! I'm Lisa, a 2017 NOBO PCT thru-hiker (I'm hoping that if I say those words out loud enough I'll come to believe them; I'm not sure I'm there yet) based out of Edmonton, Canada. Although I've been an avid hiker/backpacker for many years this is my first attempt at a thru-hike. I'm a notoriously type A person (I suspect others in my life could chime in here with entertaining stories demonstrating this) so I expect that this experience is going force me to balance those tendencies with the acceptance that nature cannot be always forced into a spreadsheet or to do list. Let's see how this goes... Hiking along with me will be my husband, Dan. We will also be celebrating our 10 year anniversary along the way, likely somewhere in SoCal.

Mackenzie Findeisen

Hi, my name is Mackenzie, but most refer to me as Mack Daddy. Hawaii native, living in Boulder, Colorado (shocker). I am a student at the University of Colorado, Boulder pursuing a BS in Journalism and a BA in Communication. Meanwhile, I spend my time climbing rocks, riding down snowy hills, chasing waterfalls and snuggling with my cat. I fell in love with backpacking when I was 16 and hiked a small portion of the #AT. Since then, I've been busying myself with school and short backpacking trips around Colorado (still haven't found a favorite, suggestions?).

Maricruz Mosqueda

Hola amigos! My name is Maricruz Mosqueda. I was born in Zacatecas, Mexico but grew up in Colorado. This year I'm going to through-hike the Pacific Crest Trail! I'm hoping that my journey can inspire the Latinx community to participate in the outdoors more. I’ m mostly going to wing it, so I hope you enjoy my story.

Mary Meixner

I hail from Ohio, the state with no mountains, so this mountain-seeking girl is heading for the Appalachian Trail in 2017! I graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in 2013 and have been working in the animal care field ever since, taking care of everything from horses to snakes to tigers to bears to eagles. At present, I am the Curator of Birds at a sanctuary for birds in Ohio. I am not sure where in life I want to go from here, so I am hoping that spending four months in the woods will help me discover some direction. Happy Trails! “Blessed are the curious, for they shall have adventures.”

Matthew Morelli

I have spent the last 2 decades (my whole life) exploring and extensively photographing the Southern Appalachians with my dad and friends. I am a sophomore at Kennesaw State University studying to be a high school history teacher. For work I coach a rowing team out of Roswell, Georgia. Thanksgiving 2015 I made a day trip to the top of Springer Mountain and stumbled across a group finishing their SOBO thru-hike. One of them was an 11 year old girl. It was in that moment that I realized the trail was my destiny and this semester is finally my time to do it!

Mikaela Kostrubiak

I climb things. I drink things. I smile at things. Starting my NOBO thru hike in March 2017 thanks to the love and support from Levante Brewing Company. Sit back with your favorite beverage and elevate your craft!

Nadine Symons

I am a 54 year old trying to reconnect with myself. Quit my job and started thru hiking March 10th with my dog Yankee. I would rather try and fail then never try at all

Nick Cellini

Hey, I'm Mismatch, I enjoy long scenic hikes through the woods and a chilled bottle of Mike's Hard Lemonade. AT '15 ME-GA, and setting off for a PCT thru hike attempt in May. I'm currently a personal trainer based out of the cornfields in central Illinois. I have my sights set on hiking the Triple Crown and I'm excited to share all the ups and downs of this journey with you all.

Nick Parsons

Hi guys! In the adult world I am known as Nick, but on the trail I'm called, TreeHouse! I love carrying my life on my back for months at a time, I'm a fan of living simply and simply living. I love music, fresh air, cold frosts on mountain tops and brisk breezes atop of balds! I'm about to go out for a LONG walk starting on February 15, 2017. My feet will carry me 2,190.3 miles from the Southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail at Springer Mountain, Georgia to the Northern terminus, MOUNT KATAHDIN IN MAINE!! Follow along with me as I embark on the journey of a lifetime!!

Olivia Plumb

I'm a recent high school grad who has decided to put off college and other adult-ish things for a year so I can hide out in the woods. If you want to find me on the trail, I'm the one carrying way too many books.

Patrick Donahue

My Name is Patrick "Dragonfly" Donahue and in the summer of 2016 my girlfriend, better known as "Butterfly", attempted a SOBO AT thru-hike. We made it all the way to Duncanon, PA where she was diagnosed with stress fractions in both feet, and my entire pack was stolen. We decided this was a calling to get off the trail and attempt it at a later date. Since then we have moved to central Oregon where we now live. We don't currently have the time for a 6 month hiatus from life so we plan on attacking some shorter trails such as the Lost Coast Trail and sections of the Oregon Desert Trail. -Happy Trails.


I'm A British Guy, living in Finland and hiking long trails in America! I've been travelling all over the world in the last few years. I had an adventure Thru-Hiking the AT in 2015 and will hopefully be having some more in 2017 on the Continental Divide Trail. I'll be blogging all about my preparations for the CDT in the build up to the hike and will be blogging from the trail in June. Checkout more of my writing at and follow me on Instagram @pieonthetrail

Rhys Hora

Howdy All, I'm Rhys, thanks for stoppin' by. If you've made it this far it means you just read all the gibberish I've written above, and for that I'm sorry. I owe you a beer. I'm hiking the the Appalachian Trail because, short answer, I think there's more livin' to be squeezed out of life. Thanks for reading, if you have any questions or want to nerd out about gear, hiking, or shenanigans (I love shenanigans!) feel free to reach out via email or facebook. See you on the trail!

Ronn Raszetnik

I'm "Wayfinder," a 34 year old adventurer, spiritual seeker, craft beer geek, and aspiring writer who is taking the path less traveled on the Benton MacKaye Trail in 2017. Born and raised in Florida, I have scaled as many swamps as I have mountains, but hiking in the southern Appalachians always renews my spirit.

Ruth Morley

After living overseas 18 years, I continue to enjoy exploring the world, especially via my own two feet. The AT has been calling my name for several years now, and I'm finally accepting the challenge, with a custom-made flip-flop hike: SOBO from Harper's Ferry, July-October, 2017, and then NOBO out of Harper's Ferry, April-July, 2018. Even though I have hiked extensively in Europe, that was hut-to-hut, so this will be my first time to have my bedroom and kitchen on my back. I welcome the challenge! Please join me as I prepare for my "home-grown hike," as I sew my own tarp, backpack and quilt and dehydrate all my gluten- and dairy-free foods. Let the adventure begin!

Sam Getchell

You'll find me wandering the woods, clearing trails, and walking long distances. I hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2015, and will be walking north once again on the PCT in 2017! Hailing from New Hampshire, the mountains have always been my home.

Sara Chico

Hey, everyone! I'm getting an early start on my NOBO and I'll be hitting up Springer Mountain in February (the cold never bothered me anyway, right Elsa?) I'm 24 and I grew up in North Carolina, but I live in Colorado right now, where I'm spoiled rotten playing in the Rockies every chance I get. I graduated from Appalachian State University with a BS in Cellular/Molecular Biology in 2015, and I'm thru hiking the last bit of my gap year before I hopefully start med school in August. I'm a simple gal who loves the usual things in life: big dogs, flannels, and free chips and salsa. Get ready for some serious shenanigans. Happy hiking!

Scott Edwards

I am a class of 2017 Appalachian Trail thru hiker. My background in camping, hiking and backpacking is through scouts. As a youth I spent five summers backpacking in the mountains of New Mexico at Philmont Scout Ranch, two of which were spent teaching others how to do so as a Ranger. As an adult I have continued my love of the outdoors, and have been back to Philmont four times as an adult leader and have led two groups for week long adventures to Isle Royale. It will be amazing to see some of the changes that take place in others on the trail, but I am especially interested to see what I can learn from the trail. The longest I have ever been out at one time is three weeks, and that was over 30 years ago. Hopefully I can convince my wife, Leslie, to write a couple of blog posts about what it is like for those that are left behind as we pursue our dreams of a thru hike. Happy trails......

Scott Farley

An avid hiker that loves to escape the world and run into nature. I do not have a trail name YET so be gentle. Besides hiking I love to ride my Harley Davidson any chance I get. I also do Stand Up Comedy and you can see one of my shows by going to my you-tube channel. I am also an 8 year Marine Veteran and a Veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan. I am really looking forward to this upcoming 2,189 mile journey on the Appalachian Trail. If you see me out there say hello and carry my gear. Ha

Scuba Steve

Salutations fellow wanderers and followers, fans, friends, and families of wanderers! Our's not to reason why, Ours but to hike and die, Up the Appalachian Trail, hiked the 2017 thru hikers. (With apologies to Alfred, Lord Tennyson). My ambitious plan is to start a NOBO the first week of May, take one week off in mid June, and finish by the first week of September. I will either succeed greatly, or fail spectacularly, either way, it should be quite entertaining and exciting. I am 47, retired military, working on my MBA, a book, and of course a hike! RLTW

Sean Heinrichs and Hannah Storrs

Hey there! Thanks for checking out our blog, we just love to write out here on the trail. During our 2015 thru-hike of the South West Coast Path we knew that long distance hiking was for us and that we would absolutely have to come back for more. Hannah has lived in close proximity to the Appalachian Trail and it has been a dream of hers to hike it for a long time so it was a logical next adventure! We're hiking the trail this year for CHaD Kids - an amazing children's hospital located right along the trail. If you'd like to help you can find out how on our website!

Sean Kearns

I'm 35. I'm a father of 2. I'm a heavily bearded outdoorsman and I have an unnatural obsession with craft beer. I will be NOBO thru-hiking the AT with the love of my life Carolina (trail name Geisha) in 2017!

Shaina Dudek

Hey world, I'm Shaina. Southeast Michigan native. I showed up to my first adventure in the mountains with a suitcase and had no idea that people climbed rocks for fun until 2014. Since then I have gallivanted around the deserts of Utah as a wilderness therapy guide, trekked 2200km of Te Araroa in New Zealand, and have spent more nights under the stars than under a roof. I dabble in paints, poetry, live music, and portable instruments. Follow me and my love and our new harmonica on the trail this May. NOBO PCT 2017.

Shelby Cook

Hey everyone! My name is Shelby, and I'm from Newaygo, Michigan! I studied writing at Wheaton College ('14) in the suburbs of Chicago, and have been floating between the high peaks of Denali, Alaska and the warm beaches of St. John, US Virgin Islands since then. I love coffee, used book stores, front porch sittin’, drinking beer, traveling, playing outside, all things Alaska, Taco Bell, and you. :)


Nature-lover, spreadsheet warrior, and amateur yogi. I like books, giggle fits, and fried potatoes in any form. Embarking on an AT thru-hike adventure in March 2017. NOBO.

Stephanie Brummett

Hi! Hey! My name is Stephanie, and I'm gearing up (pun very much in-tent-ed... I mean, intended... MUCH eye-roll) for my solo NOBO thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2017. I'm from beautiful San Francisco and am a cliche san franciscan with a love of yoga, rock climbing, waiting in long lines for brunch (our favorite hobby), complaining about rent increases, and "literally freezing" in 50 degree weather. I grew up backpacking and hiking in the Sierras and am eager to get my feet on the ground over in the Appalachian Mountains. You can follow me along on Instagram (@stephbrummett), twitter (@sabrummett), and here!

Steve and Ivetta Severance

Hello! My name is Steve, I'm a 51 year old retired firefighter/paramedic. My wife Ivetta and I will finally be realizing our dream of thru-hiking the AT in 2017. We've been looking forward to this opportunity since we were married 32 years ago! Our trail names are Engine and Caboose...given to us on the AT years ago while hiking in a long line with our four children. In addition to hiking, we enjoy running, cycling, good food and craft beer. We'll be leaving Springer on March 8th and we can't wait to get the journey started. Hope to see you out there!

Stewart Moore

Stewart developed a passion for writing and the outdoors as early as high school. Living in the Southeast's premier climbing city, Chattanooga, Tennessee, Stewart was drawn to the natural beauty of the area and spent a great deal of time climbing and running, experiences that crept into his college applications. As a French Language and Literature major at Sewanee: The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, Stewart grew his passion for languages while continuing to spend ample time trail running. His study of the French language took him to Nantes, Corsica, Geneva, and Guadeloupe, while his dedication to running allowed him to complete over ten marathons and ultra-marathons. Moving to Colorado in 2014, Stewart began a Masters program at Colorado State University focusing in creative non-fiction writing. Combining his outdoor experiences hiking over 1,000 solo miles on long-distance trails with thoughts on familial and personal relationships, Stewart finished his Masters thesis in August of 2016. Stewart currently lives in Frisco, Colorado, teaching yoga at Summit Hot Yoga, skiing and snowboarding at Copper Mountain, and writing a weekly gear roundup for Shoulders of Giants. He is continually active outside and has written freelance work for Elephant Journal and The Flyfish Journal. He is currently planning a Northbound thru-hike of Appalachian Trail starting in mid-April 2017.


Hey y’all! Stubbs here! I’m a Marylander who likes beer (maybe a bit too much!), running, reading, traveling the World, and of course hiking! I will be making my second thru-hike attempt with my husband and best friend, after a pelvic fracture forced me off trail in 2016. I made it over halfway to Boiling Springs, PA and have every intention of conquering the trail in its entirety this time if the odds are in my favor! It’s go time!

Tasia Kellogg

I just recently graduated college two BS degrees poorer and am in the twilight zone of misdirection where most graduates find themselves, so I decided to follow a path marked far better than the one to my future. White blazes, here I come.

Therese Masotta

The name's Lil Wayne. This is one incredibly novice hiker attempting to hike as much of the AT as possible in Spring 2017! I am a co-founder of The Slag Review, an online/print literary magazine. On the side, I am a self-taught guitarist, ceaseless pun generator, and cheap wine enthusiast. This is the time to live, let's all shout from a mountain top.

Tiffany Taylor Korrigan

I was a prospective 2016 AT NoBo thru-hiker, but leaning more toward a SoBo or flip-flop now. Also I'm a retired Army Sergeant First Class that lives in Kentucky with my three teenagers. I'm newly back into hiking and backpacking after some time away from it while serving in the military. I bring into these new adventures a completely different outlook than I had 20+ years ago when I originally wanted to do this hike.

Tom Abel

My name is Tom, but I am going by the trail name Red Beard. I am 66 years old, and as you can tell from my picture, my beard is no longer red. Red Beard reflects how I see myself when I am not looking in the mirror. I refuse to grow old gracefully. I am a geologist, now retired. I have always enjoyed working in the field and disdained working in the office. I have wanted to thru-hike the AT since 1975 and am finally going in 2017. In the mean time, I will be training physically and mentally (thank you Appalachian Trials) and getting my gear the way I like it. I will occasionally write about my progress. Happy Hiking!

Tom Rainer

Hi. My name is Tom and I'm planning on completing a North Bound thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2017 along with one of my sons. I'm recently retired from my job as a technical manager. This adventure offers an opportunity of a lifetime, as I seek to discover the focus for my encore career. I'm happily married to my wife of 38 years and we have three grown children, and four young grand children. I love all kinds of music, singing, playing guitar, country line dancing, and square dancing.

Tom Willard

Haunted by a failed thru hike attempt in 2016, I am back in 2017. My head is clear, the flame is reignited, and I am hungry for the trail.

Tommy Corey

Hello! My name is Tommy, I'm 29 and live in Portland, Oregon. I grew up in Northern California in a town called Redding. For the last 12 years I've hopped around from Santa Barbara, Seattle to San Francisco. I'm a photographer, craft bartender and a incredibly successful singer when I'm in the shower. I've been taking photos for 15 years now. I picked up my first camera at 14 years old and immediately became deeply passionate about photographing people. I am taking on the PCT this year and will be creating a photo series of nudes, concept art and portraits of hikers I meet out on the trail. Some of my photographer heroes are Annie Leibovitz, Joel Peter-Witkin, Helmut Newton and Diane Arbus. My favorite artists are The Police, Stevie Wonder, Jeff Buckley and Whitney Houston. I hate lasagna and the sound of motorcycles. A long walk on the beach sounds awful because I don't like the ocean that much (OK, I'm afraid of the ocean). But I do love my Mama, Sundays and good dick joke; not in that order though. And sorry this was long, I forgot I was writing this for an outdoor website, not a Tinder profile. Happy hiking! ;)


My name is Tortugamama (Tortuga was taken), and Grey Hare and I are recently retired and are very excited to be starting our adventure on the AT. We will be flip flopping beginning in Virginia on April 10. We are life-long outdoor enthusiasts and look forward to hearing from our family and friends, old and new, along the way. Any words of advice will be greatly appreciated!


My name is Travis. I will be through hiking the PCT in 2017. I worked on cars for the last 13 years as a BMW master technician and shop foreman. Aside from loving to hike, I also love to build and off road Jeeps, and everything that comes with that, such as fabrication and welding. I have recently decided that I did not like my job and situation. My wife and I sold almost everything that we owned to downsize our life pay off most of our debt and are beginning a new chapter in our life starting with an epic adventure across the western United States to the PCT.

Tyler Burnette

I am currently 22, but will be spending my 23rd birthday on the Appalachian Trail this summer! Recently graduated from Tennessee Tech, and excited to go Walkabout. Hoping this trek will allow me to develop into the person I aspire to be. Will try to post weekly on topics regarding the body, mind, and soul. Also, will be posting a series regarding physical fitness while on trail. I hope that my experience can help fellow and future thru-hikers make the most of the journey of a lifetime!


Hello Everybody! My name is Jordan and I am 29 years old. I am currently planning my first (full length) Thru-hike, and will begin sometime in March 2017! This is just the beginning. I intend to complete the triple crown and then move toward advanced mountaineering. My current goals are to summit Everest and own an adventure related business by the time I am 40! I am the definition of "free spirit". I have lived in almost every state on the eastern seaboard! I was born in StateCollege, PA and raised in Londonderry, VT. I'll admit, I was a spoiled ski resort brat. Anyway, now I have developed this strange urge to walk up mountains? I Don't know... sounds kind of silly when I actually think about it. This is not my first appearance on the AT. Some of you may have seen me and my Siberian Husky back in 2015 as we hiked from Damascus, VA - Roanoke, VA (Hiking under the trail names "Vermont and Mukluk"). I have also completed all of PA and All of VT! "I don't expect anybody to care about my dreams, I just want to be the one who inspires you to follow you own" - Vermont


Hi, I'm Waterfall, a retired elementary school teacher. I've been section hiking the AT for seventeen years and have finished one fourth of it in all that time. I know, I hear all of the thru hikers out there saying, "What?!". This year is the first time I'm going to be on the trail for two months straight, hoping to do another fourth of the trail. Next year I'll do the other half. I needed a blog space and The Trek was gracious enough to allow me to share space on their site with the Bloggers of 2017 thru hikers. Trust me, I'm honored. I'm not doing the AT hike your way, thru hikers, I'm doing it my way, a little at a time. But, I have the same thoughts in my mind as all of you, that I will get it done. I'm excited, nervous, and anxious and can't wait to get out there, again.


Aaron Ibey

Hey guys! My name is Aaron I'm 20 years old from Indianapolis, Indiana. I'm setting out to hike the Appalachian Trail in early March, I can't wait! I recently graduated High School last spring and decided to take a gap year before I head into the "adult world" (whatever that means...). I'm a photographer, skateboarder, and adventure enthusiast. Along the way on my hike I will be photographing my trip along the AT, in hopes of creating a photo book of the A.T. as well as the people that help the A.T. both on and off trail. I'm very excited to blog for Appalachian Trials! Happy hiking!

Alan Goodwin

Just a 29 year old guy from New Hampshire who will be attempting to hike the AT starting in late March 2016. Everyone has their own reasons as to why they are hiking the trail. I suppose mine are similar to others – need an adventure, need a change, have big dreams, want to live life to the fullest etc. etc. My goals of this blog are to hopefully provide everyone a little bit of entertainment, a little bit of inspiration, and most importantly to let my parents know that I’m still alive. Working 8-5 for the next 35 years (with a few vacations mixed in) scares the shit out of me. People live their lives in a magnitude of different ways. Find something that you love and do it because you want to, not because society told you to. (this whole paragraph is such a cliché) I’ve had people ask me if I am hiking for a charity or for a cause. My answer is no, I suppose that is selfish, but you shouldn’t donate to a cause because someone is hiking the AT, you should donate because you want to. If you feel strongly about one specific issue you should contribute in any way that you can. Whether that is cancer, ALS, or the heroin epidemic is a huge bitch right now. If anyone wants to send me anything along the way (another selfish statement) snickers and whiskey are encouraged items.

Alex Frank

Hey! My name is Alex (at least for the time being). I graduated college about three years ago and have been working since then. After a long career in the corporate world, I decided that it was time to retire and start a new adventure. This trek has been a dream of mine for years now and I can't wait for the experiences to come. For me, the spiritual journey is just as important as the physical one. I will be attempting to hike the Appalachian Trail NOBO, starting mid April!

Alex Mohrman

Alex is currently studying Environmental Science at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. As soon as she graduates this May she will be trading the beach for the mountains and embarking on a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail!

Amy Bee

I love backpacking, but it is not something that comes easily to me, which is why I am so enamored. As a person that struggles with a mental illness, it is common to live in my head and be at the whim of my emotional impulses. Backpacking demands I get out there in the physical world; it helps me to be present, to work, to overcome obstacles, and find success on top of mountains. It pushes me to be tenacious and accept emotional transience. Besides, the best places in the world are the ones you have to walk to! I will be thru hiking the PCT in 2016- you can follow along here, and read about past PCT adventures at gottahike dot com.

Andria Schmitz

Well hey! I'm Andi, a traveler currently pit stopping in the Midwest. I'm a jogger, tea enthusiast, banjo listener, and in December, a recent college grad! My post-college plans are slightly deviated from the norm, as the AT is first on my list. Follow my wanderings and we'll most likely learn a few things together as I journey north to Katahdin.

Ashley Schellhase

Appalachian Trail Southbound 2016 || Colorado Trail 2017 || GA hiker trash

Aundrea J

Hey Hey Hey! Aundrea here, I am an aspiring 2016 Appalachian Trail Thru-hiker. Mother of a plus size feline. Lover of life, laughs, and leftovers. Wanderer, adventurer, and beverage enthusiast. I dream of mermaids and motorcycles and meeting a man who can dance.


Growing up in the south as a displaced northerner, I've never been able to fit in perfectly anywhere. After subsisting on little more than dirt and pennies as an AmeriCorps and SCA intern at Bear Mountain State Park, I rekindled my love for all things green, dirty, and 100% natural. Follow my adventures as I head northward on the Appalachian Trail on February 27. I promise I'm sort of funny.

Ben Moster

Hey folks Ben here! I recently graduated from Kent State University in December with a Bachelor's of Science in Aeronautics. In my last semester I spent more time studying the AT than I did studying for classes. I've got some time to kill before I start a new job and I can't think of a better way to spend this time than on an epic adventure.

Ben Pugliese

My name’s Ben, and I’ll be setting out on April 7th for a northbound thru-hike on the Appalachian Trail. I grew up in Alpharetta, Georgia, and have spent the past six years in Boulder, Colorado after moving there to attend the University of Colorado. If you're interested in my hike or just looking to kill some time, I'd love to have you follow along. I’ll do my best to keep things interesting! Happy Trails.

Beth Harper

Hi! I'm Beth. I like singing disney songs in the shower, coconut flavored anything, and really terrible puns. You can usually find me rereading one of my favorite books, searching for treasures in thrift stores, or lying in the sun and pretending that I can tan. My husband Jordan and I fell in love with hiking in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. We are thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail NOBO starting in March.

Brenda Whaley

Hi, my name is Brenda Whaley. I'm a 60 year old mother, grandmother, retired teacher, dog lover, bike rider and thru-hiker wannabe! Happily retired and living an active life, Larry my husband of 43 years, and I were looking for a little more action than breaking in the porch rockers. What could be more in tune with that idea than hiking 2,189.2 miles on the Appalachian Trail? We moved to Piedmont, Alabama next to the Chief Ladiga Bike Trail where we ride our bikes on an average of 100 miles a week. We found that The Pinhoti Hiking Trail connects with the bike trail. Having hiked the AT approach trail to Springer Mountain in Georgia our interest was peaked, so to speak. We will begin our flip/flop thru-hike adventure April 2016.


In no particular order, part time: brewer, hiker, kayaker, driver, traveler, photographer, and cook. Someday I'd like change that to full time for one or more of those. I've known about the A.T. for as long as I can remember. My grand parents lived in Harrisburg and hiked sections of it. I'm not sure when I got the notion to do a thru-hike. I'm fairly certain it wasn't in my head upon graduation of H.S. or after getting out of the Navy as those would have been perfect times to do such a thing. Guess I was too worried about getting on with life and doing the "responsible" thing. I want to change that. And I'm hoping 2016 is a good year for a NOBO.


Hi guys! I'm Cat! I am a recent graduate of the University of Georgia and now I am out adventuring through Colorado while in grad school for military counseling. I love school, Colorado and my job at REI but I am choosing to leave it all for 6 months to walk through the woods with a true friend who was crazy enough to join me. From Colorado to Georgia to KATAHDIN! I am excited about joining this community! Please feel free to reach out to me -- I would love to hear from you!

Charles Edwards

Recently retired 63 year old husband, father of two and grandfather of 1. A 40 year career in adult and juvenile corrections now behind me, I look forward to a bucket list adventure of a thru hike of the AT. Now with the time, health and resources I can actually attempt this adventure. Please, keep me in your prayers!!!

Claudia and Andrew Carberry

Greetings! We completed our dream of North-bound thru-hiking the AT in 2016! We loved life on the trail. We will continue to share reflections on our hike and dispatches from new places. Our next adventure is New Zealand in 2017.

Cole Farnum

I'm Cole and I'll be starting my NOBO thru-hike on New Year's Day, January 1st @ Springer Mt. My passions include learning, teaching, physical challenge, the combination of the three being the biggest of them all.

Colleen Goldhorn

Hello! My name is Colleen, but I'm better known on the trail as NoNa. I currently live in Rocksylvania, and have been in love with climbing the state's rocky peaks since I was a little girl. In 2016, I attempted a thru hike of the AT when illness unfortunately forced me off the trail - however I am currently working towards section hiking my way to Katahdin! You can usually catch me somewhere in the woods most likely hugging a tree, taking a thousand pictures of the same overlook, or eating my 5th Snickers bar of the day. Happy hiking!

Corinne DuBois

My name is Corinne, but you can call me Cori. I am a 25 year old piano technician and bagpiper finally realizing a childhood dream of thru-hiking the AT. I love music, literature, hot chocolate and laughing. I hope to emerge from this journey of a lifetime (at least) alive, wiser, stronger and with tons of great stories to tell.

Crystal Gail Welcome

I grew up in Orange Park, Florida. Two weeks after receiving my Bachelors of Arts in Forensic Psychology, I spontaneously traveled to a small village in Kenya. There, I worked as a tree planter in the Kenyatta National Forest, in the morning. Then I would walk nearly five miles to teach Literature at a secondary school in the afternoon. My time in Kenya proved instrumental in helping me to uncover my love for education. Upon returning to the United States, I applied for and was accepted into the New York City Teaching Fellows. Three years following, I received my Masters in Education certification from Florida State College. I relocated to Portland, Oregon and shortly after returned home to be closer to my Dad. I started developing headaches and lost my vision. Within weeks of developing those symptoms, I had my first of many brain surgeries. A shunt was placed to alleviate the symptoms of the rare brain disease, Intracranial Hypertension. With the hopes of starting a new, I relocated to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After a series of surgeries spanning one years time, I moved to Fort Worth, Texas. It was there that I met Sarah, my partner of four years. Once reaching my 9th surgery, I sought out a specialist and found one in Atlanta, Georgia. Together, Sarah and I packed up our belongings and with our two dogs, Echo and Carma relocated to Atlanta. Here, I received treatment at Emory Healthcare and was fitted with a Medtronic Neuromodulator (The neuromodulator redirects pain signals to the brain). Jokingly, I refer to myself as a “cyborg”. Because I live with a medical implant and it gives me the power to do things I haven’t or couldn’t do otherwise. Before receiving the neuromodulator, I was extremely depressed and morbidly obese. However, the neuromodulator changed everything. At the age of 33 (at the time of this entry I am 34), I started running. I completed my first half marathon just six months after my implant surgery. My determination and desire to live a healthy, full life lead to my acceptance as a 2015 Medtronic Global Heroes team member. Now that I’ve started, I can’t stop. My new goal is to be the first neuromodulator implant recipient to thru-hike the 2,660 mile Pacific Crest Trail. I will embark upon my journey in April 2016.  As a former teacher, I know the importance of leading by example, and I want others to know that all things are possible.


Hi, I'm Jon! I'm an Appalachian Trail Thru-Hiker NoBo Class of 2016! My journey officially begins on March 7th, but I feel like I've been on it for about six months now. I'm a beard fanatic and a lover of all things outdoors. I have tattoos, piercings & a kind nature. During this journey I want to grow as a person and experience the outdoors from a different perspective. I want to become more emotionally aware and connected and always see the world through curious eyes. I'll be thru-hiking with my friend Josh so get used to seeing him on here! Hakuna Matata and Good Vibes.

Dave Michel

Trailname - Pitchit. Newly retired, went for a walk in the woods on the AT March 21, 2017 on a Supported Thru Hike with my wife, Tidbit. I'd sectioned about 60% of the AT; found out I'd done the easy parts! In 2009 I broke my ankle between Lafayette and Madison in the Whites; but the rest of NH and south Maine were harder! I made it 2070 miles when a stress fracture on my right, 3rd metatarsal sidelined me. Close. Will go back to finish the unfinished part in Maine in 2017.

Dawn Webster

Dawn plans to end a 5 year "optimistically quarter-life crisis" with a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. This journey has already included becoming a physician of acupuncture, herbs, and traditional Chinese medicine and traveling throughout 40-ish countries, often with trumpet in tow. Why not reintroduce myself to American culture with a walk in the woods?

Deb Beck

I'm a 50 year old photographer, writer, wife, mom and grandmother. I attempted a 2014 thru-hike but due to injury I sadly came off the trail 225 miles in. I am currently planning my return to the trail in February 2016 with the love of my life. We will start over at Springer and hopefully this year we won't have a foot of snow underfoot. In 2014 I wrote "On the eve of setting out to explore the life of a thru-hiker on the Appalachian Trail I’m ready to embrace that sense of freedom and adventure. I love the outdoors, sleeping in a tent, yet I despise wearing shoes and hate the cold. So beginning our hike in mid-February will be a testament to my determination to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail." Those thoughts have never been more true. There isn't a thing I would change going back out in 2016. A perfect day for for me is hiking, where I can let my mind wander and photograph the beauty surrounding me and finishing out the day chilling with fellow hikers, sharing our experiences.


Hi there! I am Debi. While toiling away in the corporate realm, I read an in flight magazine article about the Appalachian Trail and thought "someday". Many years, career and lifestyle changes later, I have decided that "someday" is now. Cooking has always been my passion and now it is my profession. Some would say I live a nomad life. I say I live a blessed life with the support of a great family and framily. Planning my 2016 thru hike has been a borderline obsession for over a year now- let's do this!


I quit my job in 2013 to thruhike full time. So far, so good! This year I'll be on the Pacific Crest Trail. "Thruhiking is sweet misery."

Dora the Explorer

Dora the Explorer started backpacking in 2011. Since then she's completed over 6,000 miles on America's hiking trails such as the PCT, CDT, and Colorado Trail. A glutton for punishment, Dora is now planning her biggest trek yet; 5,000 miles in one season. Details on which route she will be hiking will be announced soon :)

Duke Conrad

I'm a former teacher and administratort and recent graduate from work . I'm also a husband, father of two and friend to many. I live in Suffolk, Virginia and I had a rather strange experience about 5 years ago that I can only describe as an "epiphany" of sorts. It was about doing a thru-hike on the AT. Short story made long, the plan is to flip flop starting March 13, 2016. Stay tuned.......and follow my brother, "Shrek" , newcomer to our adventure, niece "Scout"and I (Chopper/Bandanaman) as we start our great adventure!

Dylan Niknot

I have spent my lifetime chasing big rapids, mayfly hatches and whistling wings. I was the kid who grew up in the outdoors away from video games and TV. As a youth I spent time hiking the trails of PA including the AT. I was the kind of kid with the full length map of the AT on my wall growing up. I finally took control of my life and thru hiked the AT in 2016. It opened up my eyes to so many new and exciting things and helped me to develop a better understanding of the world, and more importantly, myself.

Dylan Siebenhaar

I have modest credentials and probably even less credibility. I have a high school diploma and several years of drudgery behind me as a member of the workforce. I recently quit my job to walk the Appalachian Trail for reasons still obscure to even myself. I have ideas that I hope to express to you as lucidly and honestly as possible.

Eliane Coates

Hi my name is Eliane, you can also call me Elle. I am from Frederick, Maryland and recently graduated college from the University of North Carolina Asheville. In Summer 2015, I served as the Visitor Service intern at ATC Headquarters in Harpers Ferry, WV. Here, my dream began to thru hike the trail and I will head NOBO in March 2016.

Emily Holzhauer

My name is Emily and I’m from the middle of nowhere Illinois. In December 2015 I will graduate with my bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Southern Illinois University. Much to my mother’s dismay, I will be setting out to thru- hike NOBO March 2016.

Eric St Jean

Eric was the name given to me at birth. Originally from the Great White North and raised in the Land of The Free you may hear me say "y'all" and "eh" in the same sentence. After spending years in New Hampshire's Whites and catching the essence of AT thru hikers I am happy to finally say that it is my year. Happy Trails! #AT2016

Erin Briggeman

Hello, I'm Erin! I'm taking a shot at thru-hiking the AT starting late April 2016. I make illustrations, I make cookies, I make puns, and I'm pretty stoic about getting rained on, so as far as I'm concerned, that's the whole checklist of AT pre-requirements completed. Let's go do this thing.

Ethan Deshields

Greetings! My name is Ethan, I am 23 years old from Tulsa, Oklahoma. I'll be meandering NOBO in March of 2016! If you wanna see all things from great humor/puns to plain griping, to my love of enchiladas and Jesus, then you've come to the greatest thing since free WiFi! This is the journey of me.

Eva Briggs

I'm a family doctor in upstate new York and have always enjoyed the outdoors. My undergraduate education is in forestry. I'm a search and rescue volunteer and my border collie Boomer will be hiking with me. I've wanted to hike the AT for 40+ years and decided that 2016 is the year to go for it!

Fast Eddie

I'm a 63 year old medically retired (limbic encephalitis) airline pilot. I've been married 35 years to a wonderful woman. We have two independent and thriving children. My hobbies have included reading, music, motorcycle touring, and competitive aerobatics in my small bi-plane. I don't compete anymore because of the LE. I got into long distance hiking on the Northern Route of the El Camino de Santiago, about 700 miles including side trips. Looking forward to the challenge of the AT and the characters I'll meet along the way. If you see a black hatted, white bearded old guy just staring into space, please aim him at the next white slash a give a little shove. Thanks. I am doing this as a pledged hike. If anyone is interested in contributing they can go to and sign up as a sponsor. The organizations I'm targeting are the Mayfield Education and Research Foundation and the Red Rock Community College(Tyler Hagaman Scholarship for Physicians Assistant students. Mayfield funds Neuroscientists who have promising ideas to help understand a wide variety of neurological disorders including limbic encephalitis. The Tyler Hagaman Scholarship is aimed at Physicians Assistant students to help them finish this great program. Tyler died during his last year in the program. It didn't take long to recognize in Tyler many of the characteristics that he shared with his peers and friends; a love of the outdoors and outdoor adventure, a playfulness that he was never shy to express, and a big and willing heart which, I think, is a generational continuation and gift from his parents. This scholarship is a fitting way to remember Tyler.

Gabe Burkhardt

Howdy! I’m Gabe. I am a… Househusband? Digital Nomad? Professional bucket-lister? I guess so, maybe. I’m currently in Bucharest, Romania and not having any luck with my part-time quest to hunt down the elusive herds of vampires that supposedly originated here (I’m convinced HBO has hired them all and moved them to Louisiana to handle the stunt scenes for True Blood). Time for a more realistic goal. This will be the third time I’ve hiked along the Appalachian Trail, but I’m determined to keep hiking until I figure out who I am and what I want to be when I grow up (or I get to Katahdin). I firmly believe that the pen is mightier than the trekking pole. Armed with an ApplePencil (affectionately known as Slim) and a trusty iPad Pro (Gertrude), I will force those 1000ft summits into submission (I’ve received written assurance from a very reputable source that there won’t be any ascents greater than this), and tame the ferocious tribes of bearded backpackers that inhabit the brown strip of paradise known as the AT. If you’re still hungry, you can find additional digital sketches and pebbles of wisdom at

George Turner (Old Growth)

I started out to thru hike the AT in the spring of 2016. After hiking from Marion, Virginia to Harper Ferry, I went home to visit the wife and dogs, slipped on the stairs and tore my rotator cuff. God has a sense of humor, people! After surgery and four months of rehab, I went back to Marion and hiked south to Springer. Can't wait to get back to the trail to finish what I started.

Greg Ward

Born and raised in Montana, a deep curiosity for the outdoors seemed to just come along with my DNA. My second lifelong passion started in the kitchen watching my mom cook three meals a day. Cooking is a love of mine, mostly because it involves eating the end-product!! My life progression has been an amazing adventure, leading to my position as a Backcountry Chef. This has allowed me to experience the deep trails of the Western United States and Alaska. The scenery has been stunning, the relationships lasting, and the wildlife mesmerizing. As I cross the half-century threshold into my 50th birthday, my next step is to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail. My family supports my lifelong desire to travel 2,189 miles by foot: to slow down, to reflect, to be fully thankful. I invite you to join me and follow along on my Big "5-0"Adventure. Always follow your heart. Cheers!


HaHa attempted a thru-hike in 2015 and made it 1300 miles before breaking her wrist. !Que lastima! She's returning to the trail this summer to complete the NY --> ME portion with her beagle buddy Roan. (Yes, Roan like the Mountain!)


I was born in PA in 1991 and raised in the town of Blacksburg Virginia just a bit away from the AT. After completing a degree in Environmental science I moved to New Jersey for a few years and realized I really wasn't into the desk job thing. I decided that now was a really good time to hike the AT so after being reassured by my mother I decided it was a swell time to give it a try. I like home brewing, cooking, nature, and laughing.

Hollywood Coquito

Howdy, my name is Victoria, just call me V! I like solitude, hiking, training dogs and spending time with Andi, my partner in crime. Andi (You can see her in the photo with me) and I are AT Thru Hikers In Training


Trail name: Rucker! Completed a NOBO thru-hike of the AT in 2016. Attempting a SOBO thru-hike of the PCT in 2017. Born and raised on a farm located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Currently residing in Charlottesville, VA. Favorite Mountain- Mary's Rock, Shenandoah National Park. Favorite trail food-Maple, brown sugar oatmeal with a packed out mushy banana and instant coffee. Favorite piece of gear- a plastic spoon I got for .99 at Mountain Crossing, GA. Most quoted book- The Alchemist

Jacqui Reed

Hello there, I'm Jacqui. I'm 29 and the first epic journey of my new year will be this thing they call a thru-hike. There are so many wonderful things about life I couldn't possibly list them all, but my favorites are: hiking, writing, reading, football, OCR, animals, photography, and Daryl Dixon. I feel more at home in the woods with my dogs than I do in a crowded room or a party. You'll see me (or read about me) NOBO March 2016 on the Appalachian Trail with my long-time best friend Kimmy and my dog Panda. You can't miss me, I'll be the one just winging it.

James Scott

I'm a 34 year old tech support analyst, who quit my job and moved out of my apartment to go hike the Appalachian Trail! I'm no hiking expert, in fact I've generally been fairly ignorant, but you can laugh along at my mistakes and mishaps, while hopefully I learn a thing or two about this hiking thing. I started the Trail morbidly obese, but have lost 70 pounds so far and counting!

Jamie Marsden

Hi! My name is Jamie. I am a Doctor of Physical Therapist, following my dream and thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail! I have been an avid hiker since I was 7 years old! I also play ice hockey and soccer and am just generally pretty active. I am a bit of a jack-of-all-trades with a background in art and education and I love being inspired by the outdoors! I look forward to meeting everyone this year on the trail. Happy hiking everyone!

Jamison McLean

Out of shape, 40 year old gamer, trying to have a little adventure. Starting in May of 2016, I'll be doing a flip-flop hike of the AT, to raise money for Extra Life, the children's charity. I'm a big fan of the following: Pizza, beer, sitting on my ass and binge-watching TV shows, and riding my Harley. I don't sound much like a good candidate for a thru-hike, do I? To support my quest for Extra Life, go to

Jennifer Meadows

Hello! I am a future 2016 AT NOBO thru hiker. My journey has started with making preparations for an 11 April 2016 start date from Springer Mountain, Georgia. This hike is dedicated to my Mom and the Green Berets I was fortunate enough to live and work with in Afghanistan.

Jeremy Morris

"A truly remarkable 23 year old Paramedic from Western Massachusetts" -USA Today "Jeremy has been totally successful in everything he's ever done, ever." -People Magazine "You're hiking the AT in one shot? Southbound? You're so neat!" -James Franco "I don't know who you are. Leave me alone. Take your latte and leave before I call the police." -Cashier at Starbucks Add me on Snapchat! Jeremy.Morris

Jolly Green Giant

Howdy eventual blog fans! My name is Morgan Mons but you can call me the Jolly Green Giant for short. Anyways, I cane up with the psychotic idea to live outside for 5 or 6 months on the AT when I was spending time up in New Hampshire with mi Familia and I noticed a couple white blazes on top of Mt.Washington and I truly thought that someone decided to graffiti a perfectly rectangular white blaze because they were polite but unruly ruffians but with further questioning I was enlightened to the wonders of the AT and all that it has to offer so here we go!

Josh Lichti

Hey Folks! My name is Josh Lichti. You can find me on the trail as "Clawhammer". I am a 30 year old Ontario born tree planter who currently lives in Vancouver. I have a weird, rare condition where I can't stop playing my banjo! In early June of 2016 I will begin the SOBO journey of the Appalachian trail.

Josh Wender

My name is Josh, but you can call me Der, Tweak, or Mr Khaki Pants. I'm currently working at an advertising agency, but I want go back to school for a Masters in Under Water Basket Weaving soon. I like to get outdoors as much as possible, hiking is my preference. I also enjoy food, a good book, peaking under scabs, and laughing at my own jokes. I try not to take life too seriously and collecting experiences is my main goal.

Katie Brown

Katie was born and raised in Connecticut, but now calls the great state of Utah her home. In 2009, Katie earned the trail name ‘Wilderness’ on the most poorly planned winter camping trip of all time. In 2015, Katie finished her 3-year section-hike of the Appalachian Trail, but she decided to just keep on walking because she was really good at it. Katie is a better dancer than Drake and has been told she has a nice smile. Katie finished her thru-hike of the CDT in September of 2016. She plans to continue walking towards her Triple Crown in the coming years.

Katina (Arachne) Daanen

I was a 2016 flip-flopper, but my thru-hike attempt ended after 1300 miles. I started in Shenandoah National Park and four months later I summited Mt. Katahdin on August 23. I'm tentatively planning on finishing the remaining 890 miles in 2017. In 2011, I thru-paddled the 740-mile long Northern Forest Canoe Trail. Turns out, I did miss being on water instead of worrying about finding and carrying it. When I returned home after Katahdin, I headed up to Ely, Minnesota unwinding with a little 150-mile, two-week solo canoe trip in the Boundary Waters Wilderness.

Kelly Edwards

I'm Kelly. I graduated in May with a bachelor's degree in English and Anthropology, and right now the big question everyone wants to know is what I plan to do with it. Currently, the only answer I have is, "hike the Appalachian Trail." When I'm not hiking, you can often find me at a yoga studio, hanging out at goat farms, or running. You can follow my adventures (including the AT) on Instagram @kelly.edwards_

Kelly Souva

Hi! I'm Kelly! Unfortunately my thru hike isn't going to happen as planned so instead I'll be starting a long ass section hike at the NOC on March 20! I'm a 27 year old lover of nature, reading, kayaking and backpacking. Eventually (maybe) I'll graduate from U Toledo with a degree in Environmental Biology.

Kendra Jackson

Hi! My name is Kendra, and I'll be starting my NOBO Appalachian Trail thru-hike on March 4th, 2016. I'm a proud Mainer, and a recent Husson University Marketing Grad. Joining me will be Tyson, my best friend for over a decade and the love of my life. This will be the first of many long distance adventures, so follow me on my journey from Springer to Katahdin!

Kenna Bresser

I'm going to hike the AT in 2016 and it's going to be in tents. (get it?) However I'll be in a hammock so it won't literally be in tents but no need to get hung up on it. I'm an outdoorsy nerd who is excited for going on an adventure. Rocky roller-coaster ahead of me and it's going to be epic.

Kevin Arsenijevic

Good morrow world! I'm Kevin (Chaco), I thru hiked the AT in 2016 and loved every second of it. I'm working at Maltz Jupiter Theatre in Florida until my PCT thru hike in 2018. I enjoy running, staring at mountains, and baby raccoons. My trail motto: "It'll be fine until it's not". Hike on!

Kimmy Morris

My name is Kimmy but you can call me Sprout. I enjoy music, nature, & all things related to coffee. I'm a 28 year old mom & wife who accidentally discovered a love of hiking after spending all of my life living in Alabama. Turns out the world is not all square, flat, & beachy! Who knew? I then convinced my best friend, Jacqui, & her dog to join on a little walk from Georgia to Maine. I will be heading out NOBO March of 2016. Stay tuned because this could get interesting!

Kira Thornley

I'm Kira. I have a neat life with a job, a boyfriend, and great roommates (my parents). In 2016 I'm leaving the job and the roommates and taking the boyfriend to ride into the sunset. Or just hike the Appalachian Trail. If you like what you see, check out some of my other stuff at!

Laurel "Duchess of Slug" Seus

Hi! I'm Laurel and completed a flip-flop thru hike hiking NoBo solo from Spring Mtn. to Damascus and continuing SoBo from Mt. Katahdin back to Damascus with my boyfriend. I'm a twenty-something recent University of Tennessee graduate who grew up in the Smokies and decided it's time to take the ultimate tour of my home mountain range. In addition to mountains, I enjoy riding all kinds of bicycles, scaling rock faces, and begging for affection from dogs.

Lauren Hafley

My trail name is woodchuck and will remain woodchuck because it's tattooed on the bicep of a man in Damascus. I write for The Trek because I'm sick of wet cement and bathroom stalls. & I thru hike for the same reason.

Leah Bear

I'm 30 years old from Destin, Florida. I love to play in the sand but also enjoy conquering mountains. Anything outdoors will usually keep me smiling. I'm also a mutt lover, avid jogger and travel enthusiast who can always appreciate a local brewery. An Appalachian Trail thru hike has been on my bucket list for far too long and I think it's time to give this dream a go come early April. I just hope this beach girl can handle whatever mother nature throws at her. I like to think that stepping out of our comfort zone is one of the best ways to, here we grow. Here's to new experiences and happy hiking.

Leah Cornwell

Passionate about the outdoors, a self-proclaimed gear geek, a former All-American athlete and Firefighter/EMT, a current client advocate for the homeless in Gainesville, FL, and mom to a wonderful 3 year old (golden retriever) named Shelby. I will attempt the adventure of a lifetime in a 2016 Flip-Flop thru hike of the Appalachian Trail. I can't wait to test myself, to find myself, and to be part of something bigger than all of us through this adventure!

Les Mayo

Well, first and formost, I'm a hiker. I've been known to enjoy a good cocktail and sometimes I eat fruits and vegetables. Sometimes I also eat meat. I'm a world renowned hitman and double agent. Hobbies include quantum physics, million dollar backroom poker games, assassinating public figureheads, and feeding the ducks in the pond. I've negotiated peace treaties between extremist religious factions and I've also been to the moon on more than one occasion.

LightFoot Tracks

Hey! We are Heather and Dan. The meaning adventure and travel for us has evolved over the years from party backpackers who's idea of exercise is popping out to get another six pack, to where we are today, which is two ultra runners who have spent the last 2 years driving the Americas taking in some of the most iconic hikes on offer along the way. As our trip progressed so did the focus on hiking, organically the idea of a thru hike began to form in our minds. It became the solo topic of conversation on long drive days and the pillow talk after long days spent hiking the Andes. We love hiking and the outdoors but most of all we love challenge and adventure, which we believe the AT will offer in spades. We are under no illusions, it will be hard and there will be crappy days (they usually make the best blog posts) but as with anything in life it is this adversity that makes the rewards oh so much sweeter.


I'm Linde, a twenty-something Dutch-American hybrid. I grew up in below-sea level Holland, always looking forward to the summers spent in national parks across the USA. Nowadays I play with swords, make puns, read books, eat doughnuts, make pictures, have a bachelor's degree in cultural anthropology, and the love for the outdoors never left. Onwards to Maine!

Lisa Maher

YO! I'm Dill - a 23 year old Canadian who is all about cats, puns, winter, and chocolate. In spring 2015 I graduated from Trent University with a BSc in Biology but I truly believe adventure is the best way to learn so... I'm currently doing a 2016 NOBO thru hike! It's inTENTse! I love to laugh and be silly. I just want to live a completely adventurous, passionate, weird life.

Liz Schmitt

My cousin and I are two college grads with little direction in life. We will be leaving our dogs, partners, and family behind in Kansas for 6 months to hike the NOBO AT in March 2016.

Lydia Armstrong

Well, hi there! I'm Lydia, an aspiring thru hiker testing her luck on the PCT beginning April 19, 2016. I like to think of myself as an outdoor enthusiast with a decent sized vocabulary, but I'm sure I'll prove both of those things at least slightly untrue at some point along this journey. My hobbies include making myself look like an idiot, laughing way too often, correcting the grammar of NY Times Bestselling novels, and eating way too much food in a single sitting. I've been itching to trade in my sparkly work flats for muddy hiking boots for over a year now & I cannot wait to get out there! Feel free to check out some of my other shenanigans over at

Mariah Bardwell

I'm just a girl from the Pacific Northwest who's decided to explore the other side of the country the best way I know how, by heading NOBO in March 2016 from Springer! Barista by trade, but soon to be thru-hiker this season. Leaving behind my husband and pups to fend for themselves while I set off to eat oatmeal in the woods for six months may not be everyone's cup of tea(or in my case coffee) but to me it sounds like a great way to round out my twenty fourth year on this earth. I can't wait to see you all in that green tunnel!

Michelle Strong

My name is Michelle. I started my journey as a section hiker in June 2015. It changed my world. I came home, sold all my belongings and decided to live a different type of life. An authentic life. I am moving to Belize in October and will live on the island of Caye Caulker until April 2016 when I plan on getting back on the Appalachian trail for my thru-hike!

Mike Mayfield

Hey Guys! I am a 28 yr old nurse who has lived his entire life in the City of Brotherly Love. I've been hiking and camping my whole life with the Boy Scouts of America. I decided this year was a good year to check off a bucketlist item. I just graduated from Drexel university with my BSN, and to celebrate I am quitting my job for 5 months and as of April 1, joining the class of 2016 NOBO hikers.

Mischa Egolf

Hi! My name is Mischa (pronounced like fish-a with a M), but my trail name is Tripwire. I completed a NOBO through-hike in 2016 with my adventuring partner Caleb (aka Limbo). Even though I've conquered the AT, I plan to continue adventuring and sharing my thoughts on the wonderful world of hiking. Thanks for reading!

Molly Brown

Hey guys, I'm Molly and I am graduating from high school in January. What better way to celebrate than spending the next few months in the woods detoxing from all that. I love nature and being outside, if that wasn't implied... and with recent health problems, is there a better way to prove your body is capable? Anyway, if you're vicariously going to hike the trail with me or we might cross paths, I am sarcastic and love to make the uncomfortable and negative into a laugh, so maybe you'll be able to pick me out from the crowd... see you out there!

Molly Bybee

Molly Bybee. Call me Training Wheels. 25 year old Kansas City native. Future music therapist. Avid YA novel and pizza connoisseur. Ex-competitive rower and current Netflix binge-watcher. Fair weather Royals fan. I'm postponing completing my Master's to undertake a NOBO thru-hike beginning March 18th. I promise, at least my mother thinks I'm funny.


Hi, My name is Lorene and I am attempting a thru hike leaving in March 2016. I am a 50 year old wife to one, mother to two, and grandmother to three. I grew up in a small fishing village on the coast of Maine where I grew to love nature and the great outdoors. This hike is one of the few selfish things I have done in my 50 years on this earth and I intend to treasure each and every moment.

Nichole Young

Hello, I'm Nichole, AT class of 2016! I walked from Georgia to Maine (4/25-9/22) to test my limits and strength, to be a badass, and to show myself that if I can do this, I can do absolutely anything... and also raised $2,500 for clean water in the process. Summer of 2017 will find me backpacking the Mini Triple Crown: Long Trail, Colorado Trail, and John Muir Trail. I'm currently living in northern NJ with my incredibly supportive and non-hiking husband, working multiple jobs to fund my mountain addiction, and working on my new website, You can also see what I'm up to on Instagram, @nicholeyoung1.


Started a NOBO April 2016 and made it 675 miles up the trail before a stress fracture grounded me. Contemplating getting back out there for another LASH in May 2017.

Olivia - Blueberry

Hi, I'm Olivia - a runner, hiker, and environmental scientist. Born near the halfway point in the rocky state of PA. I like pets, gear, and inspirational Jenn Pharr quotes. "Blueberry" - GA->PA 16

Patrick Murray

After years of day hikes, Scoober (my lab/pit mix) and I have decided we need a change. In March 2016 we will be leaving Pennsylvania for Springer Mountain to start a much needed escape from the 40 hour work week, and will begin figuring out what we're doing with our lives.


Hi! My name is Melanie but on trail I go by Peanut. Elephants are my favorite. Coffee is both a necessity and a passion. I like music festivals and craft beer. Franklin, TN. is my hometown, but the mountains of NC have my heart. Radley is my dog and the best hiking partner. I earned my Masters in Appalachian Studies from Appalachian State University in August of 2015. I've been studying Appalachian mountain culture for the past two years, researching the practices of serpent handling churches. After attending school for twenty straight years I decided I needed a new adventure. I started my NOBO thru hike at Springer on March 23rd with my boo Radley and we're having a blast!

Pen-Dexter (Jared Townley)

I graduated from Valparaiso University in 2015, now I am leaving the "normal world" behind to experience another adventure in the obscure and crazy life that I have lived. The best part? I can't remember what made me want to do it...

Phil Shipley

I am 67 years old twice retired and still working. 8 months ago I got to a point in my life where I just needed to get away for a while. then I had an epiphany, hence my trail name epiphany, go hike the Appalachian trail. I was an environmental engineer for 18 years then opened a custom furniture and cabinet shop and now I work customer service for Publix supermarkets. I want to blog my trip so my friends and relatives can follow my progress and also to tell other seniors that it is never too late for an adventure. I am excited about beginning my adventure on June 3, 2016 from springer mountain.


I'm a 22 year old creative who is inspired and driven by the always present desire to see, do, and share as much as possible. I'm extremely passionate about multiple things, some of which include music, nature and the great outdoors, and adventure. Starting my thru-hike of the AT on March 13th.

Rachael (Outlaw)

Setting out on a hike I promised myself I'd do 10 years ago, I'm a neophyte backpacker with grand dreams of making it to Katahdin in one piece and in one go. Biological anthropologist, (visiting assistant) professor, marathon runner, and avid reader, I'm looking forward to leaving the Ivory Tower behind to explore the trail and meet some great people.

Rebecca Hatch

Just a girl in the world looking for an adventure. I love travel, yoga, vegan eats, singing, dancing, and modeling. Born and raised in Nebraska; I have seen all of the western states. It's high time I see what the east has to offer me!

Richard Mackenrodt

Hi everybody, I'm living in Munich, Germany. Working as a screenwriter and novelist, I started long distance hiking only 3 years ago. Since then I hiked more than 1.200 miles on the St. James' Way, from Munich to St. Jean Pied de Port in France. I love hiking the Bavarian hills and mountains. In May 2016 I plan to start a NOBO thru-hike on the AT.

Rob Davis

Software developer, Improv performer, Netflix addict. All exchanged for 5 months on the trail.

Ronen Schatsky

Hey, I'm Ronen--known on the trail as Mogely. I graduated high school in NYC in May 2015; instead of going straight to college, I decided first to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail! I started March 9th at Amicalola Falls, and finished on August 17th on Katahdin. I'll miss cruising down the trail, whistling in time with my steps. I enjoyed the freedom that comes with a task so basic--to walk from Georgia to Maine, somehow or other. I felt myself growing stronger every day in body and mind. I hope that this winding path will largely define the way I approach the challenges of my future. Onwards with the journey, over the hills and more!

Sara Ecay

Howdy! I'm Sara and I will be setting out in March 2016, with my trusty mutt Jetta, to achieve my childhood dream of thru hiking the Appalachian Trail. I'm a 26 year old Texas born and Tennessee raised adventurer and lover of nature. I have a special passion for animals and make my living as a veterinary technician. I could count the number of overnight backpacking trips I've done on just 2 hands but I enjoyed the heck out of each of them, so I've decided to take 6 months away from my wonderful life and amazing husband to hike the entire 2,200 miles of the AT. I foresee this being one crazy adventure so stay tuned!

Scotty Hayden

hola! I'm 25 years old and I think I might be having a mid-midlife crisis. Straight outa the burbs of Philadelphia, PA & on March 17th I'll be embarking on a 2016 NOBO AT thru-hike!

Shauna Sergent

Hi everyone! I just turned 30 this past year and have decided to take a year sabbatical from life to travel and see the world. I figured there is no time like the present for a big adventure! I love to stay active and explore new places. I will kick off 2016 with a trip to South America before becoming a NOBO thru hiker on the AT. I am a little nervous going alone, but hope to be a stronger person from it!


About to finish my second Spartan Trifecta in November then I'm officially focused on the AT. Flip-flopping or section hiking it-whatever you wanna label it. I'm 39 and decided a few years ago to stop bein scared of everything and just go do it. I've had reservations about it the night before the big plunge, but never regrets after finishing. People ask me why I'm doin these things and my answer is just,"Why not?"

Stacia Bennett

I grew up in a small farm town in south Georgia, where my outdoor adventures consisted of riding ATV's through mud holes, walking show cattle with a tractor, and competing in barrel racing competitions with my Quarter Horses. I eventually moved to Athens, Georgia for college and graduated from the University of Georgia, where I finished two college degrees and still have no idea what I want to do with my life. I attempted a thru-hike in 2015 until an injury forced me off-trail at mile 700. In 2016 (quite unplanned), I embarked on another thru-hike attempt, this time a flip-flop. Once again, injury (these darned feet) forced me off trail after 3 months. I am and always will remain an active member of the Appalachian Trail community, and WILL finish the trail, sooner rather than later.

Stephanie Cortes

Howdy, I'm Stephanie. If we happen to meet on the trail, meow at me and we will probably be best friends.


We are the Mountain Mutts, one crazy unschooling mom, three wild kids, and the original Mountain Mutt (our Golden Retriever) plus our newest mutt, Gooch the Pooch named after Gooch Gap Shelter on the A.T.

Taylor Ciambra

Born and raised in the hills of Connecticut, I fell in love with hiking after summiting Mt. Washington during college. Since graduating, I’ve lived in Southeast Alaska and various national parks out West. I love making theatre, asking big questions, and telling stories. You can also check out more of my AT ramblings at:

Terry Gandy

Hi, my name is Terry Gandy, Trail name Cotton. I'm a retired engineer and am excited about sharing my 2016 NOBO (northbound) thruhike experience through my Appalachian Trials blog - Thanks, Zach! I've lived in Wisconsin for about ten years moving here from Kansas by way of Arizona, Nebraska and Missouri, where I was born and raised. I've appreciated what each of these states have had to offer in terms of the outdoors, geology and natural history. I'm especially looking forward to what the AT has to offer. As Colin Fletcher said in his book, River, "The man who takes the last step of a journey is not the same man as the one who took the first." I hope you will join me in my journey by checking out my blog from time to time.

The Stones

Hello friends! We are Josh and Maranda Stone, a happily married couple from North Georgia who had big dreams of completing the AT in 2016. We dreamed about a thru hike for some time, and we were finally able to make it happen this year! From March to August, we walked our way from Georgia to Maine and had the time of our lives! We hope to continue to share our wisdom and crazy stories with you here, so stay tuned!

Tracy Cherf

I grew up on the West Coast and I am currently living life in Middle Alabama with my husband of 30 years. (I Just realized I have lived half my life in Alabama) I am getting ready to hit the big 5-0 while hiking the trail in 2016. I enjoy painting and drawing. I also like outdoor activities such as biking, hiking, kayaking, camping and shopping at REI. (Well, it is an outdoor store!) I also enjoy taking cruises around the Caribbean, to Alaska, and to Bermuda. I have two grown daughters, a son-in-law and a grandson. I am a full time animal lover and a part time smart ass.

Victoria Ketteringham

Hi, I'm Victoria! I'm from Toronto, Canada. When I'm not working or walking, I can be found eating popcorn and drinking tea, reading young adult science fiction, saving all the banana flavoured candies for last, or watching children's movies. I am currently preparing for my 2016 NOBO thru-hike!

Victoria Wilkinson

When I was six-years-old, I met a woman wearing big, brown boots with red shoelaces. She told me she was training to hike the Appalachian Trail. Thirty-five years later in 2015, I followed her footsteps, and I brought my husband, Charlie, along for the ride. In 2016, we're heading out on the Continental Divide.

Vinny Tagliatela

Hey, I'm Vinny AKA "Slice", I'm 25 and currently living a very cold life in Chicago. I sit in a cubicle all day, wearing business casual. I'm about as far from an Eagle Scout as you can get. And for reasons beyond my understanding, I feel an insatiable urge to hit the trail and hike the AT in 2016. Join me for shenanigans and tomfoolery, won't you?

Will Babb

Hi! I'm Will, and I'm 18 years old and an Eagle Scout! I'll be thru hiking the AT starting in May 2016 right after I graduate high school! I spend most of my time running, fishing, camping, and hunting. I can't wait to hit the trail in May!

Yard Sale

Hey there! My name is Stephanie (Yard Sale), I was born and raised in the middle of no-where Wisconsin and now reside in Charlotte, NC. July 2016, my boyfriend Gordon (Cardinal) and I are breaking free from our regular routine to thru hike the AT, SOBO.

Zoë Symon

Hi! I'm Zoë. By trade, I'm a User Experience Designer living in Austin, Texas. By passion, I'm a full-time adventurer who enjoys hiking, skiing, globetrotting, reading, and baking. This particular adventure started last summer when I decided that 2016 would be the year of my NOBO thru-hike. Why the AT? Growing up in North Carolina instilled in me a love for the Appalachians that I haven't been able to shake (not that I'd want to), so it seemed like a perfect first thru-hike. Follow along! I'd welcome the company.


Alyssa Engiles

Hi All! After retiring from being a scuba instructor I have decided to leave the gorgeous Florida Keys in search of a new adventure, namely thru hiking the AT in 2015! I'm a vegan, bibliophile, scuba bum, and generally snarky individual with aspirations of avoiding "a real job" for as long as possible.

Amanda Rogers

I'm a 2015 NOBO thru-hiker. I recently gained the opportunity to change my life direction, and free of (most) obligations, I'm embarking on a 6-month journey of self discovery. Before I started the trail I had never been backpacking and had almost no experience camping, but I'm having the time of my life and learning a lot. I blog about all my life experiences at

Amanda Vega

Hello humans! My name is Amanda Vega. I am a 26 year old food-loving palm-reading young lady from Greenville, South Carolina. My biggest fears include public bathrooms and earthworms, so naturally I've decided to thru hike the Appalachian Trail.


Hey guys I’m Andrew! I graduated this year with a degree in psychology, and like so many others, beginning next year I will be trading in my cap and gown for a backpack and Merrells. I never knew people were crazy enough to walk the whole AT until I began working for the NJ State Park Service in a park which the trail travels through, and I instantly loved the idea of thru hiking. I have decided to thru-hike in 2015 before I start law school in 2016, and eliminate any trace of free time in my life. I'm hoping to start the first week of March. See ya out there!

Andrew Repp

Hey all, my name is Andrew. I am a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, (Azerbaijan 2011-2014), future grad student in international relations, and a 2015 Appalachian Trail Thru-Hiker (NOBO, March 10th). I've been traveling internationally my entire life and want to see more of what the motherland has to offer while I spend money on getting my masters degree instead of round-the-world plane tickets. I'm always up for a conversation on gear, anthropology, civil rights, or linguistics. I'll be attempting my thru hike in 120 days so stay tuned!

Bekah Barnett

I am a 26 year old backpacker who calls Indianapolis, IN, home. In 2015, my other half and I successfully completed our thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. Now, we are gearing up for our 2016 Pacific Crest Trail thru-hike. I guess that makes us gluttons for punishment. I'm here to give a little travel advice and encourage questions. Feel free to check out my personal story on Keep dreaming, keep hiking, and get outside more often!

Ben Reynolds

First the bad news I have Stage II Primary Brain tumor which has started to spread slowly to my spine it cannot be surgically removed and I have 1- 2 years left on this planet. Now the good news: I will leave this world on my own terms and those terms are walking from Georgia to Maine..

Bonnie Newman

I'll be graduating in May of 2015 with a Masters Degree in Architecture, and before I spread my wings and fly into the big, scary, grown-up world, I've decided to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail to prove to myself that I can do anything I put my mind to, which I think will ultimately help me tremendously in my journey through life. Until my hike, I'll be posting about my small hiking/camping adventures, what I'm working on for my Master's Thesis (Tree House Architecture, Artificial Lighting, and the Opportunity for Comfort on the Appalachian Trail), and other random things I think about that relate to the trail!

Bookie / Gator Tater

Hello! Welcome to the chaos of what I call life! I recently started on a life changing journey, thru hiking the AT. I am an avid outdoor enthusiast with a taste for photography and a passion for adventure. Two years ago I underwent ACL replacement. The surgery left me complacent and unenthusiastic while creating a divot on the couch. The idea of taking on a challenge beyond my wildest dreams created a passion to move and continue forward. Here's an opportunity for you to follow the amazing journey I am travelling with my four legged companion, No Shame, and a wild group of other thru hikers! Hope you enjoy the trip!

Brendan Bucko

I am searching for an adventure, for solitude, an escape from civilization, to refocus and revitalize my mind. I'm taking full advantage of the opportunity to sleep under the stars, walk miles a day in the wilderness and to simply bask in time. I am fascinated with studying our environment, health, and on improving the state of them, both independently and at Florida State University. This year, my girlfriend Morgan and I will be completing our first thru hike of the Appalachian Trail! We want to share our adventure with you as well!

Bryan Conley

Bryan is an avid adventurer with a a desire to see and experience it all. He has spend much of the last few years traveling around the country for music and mountains seeing many things most people just dream of. He continues on with his biggest trip to date, a 2015 Thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail starting in March and ending in September.


Describing oneself in a little blurb is always a complicated endeavor. I'm a later thirty-something, military wife and stay at home mom to four kiddos. I've recently been given a 6 month kitchen pass to explore my dreams, a bit unexpectedly. The kids say "Go! If Dad can do it, so can you." I have a feeling a I will be exploring more than nature on this journey.

C.M. Pagels

My name is Bard the Changeling and in 2010 I hiked the AT from Pennsylvania to Maine. The AT and I have some unfinished business, approximately 1,175 miles of unfinished business. The strength and lessons wrought from hiking everyday have lost its luster in my current form. I want to find my balance again.

Captain Planet

How quickly we move; how slowly I move. Not from one moment to the next, but like a long breathe drawing itself in, then out, the tide, the seasons, the slow, gentle touch of age. Flowing without divisions and without deadlines. No discipline, no self-discipline, but it takes every muscle, every thought, to keep from moving along with the pressure. Blowing myself into unhappy ticks and tocks. With a suffocating anticipation they wait for me to climb onboard. They wonder why I take so much time to stay or so much time to waste when I could be finding or making. Find a mate, make a family, find a job, make a future. This is my life; I will live it slowly. I will not live my life between sick days and vacation time. I will not live to work until I am no longer useful. I will not work to live only to find that I have no time left for living at the end of each day, season, year, years. I want my work to be life. I settle for nothing less and accept nothing more, an immeasurable self-discipline is one that cannot be judged. There is only now. One foot in front of the other.

Chris Allen

My name's Chris, I'm from a small town of eastern Virginia. Walking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. Yearning to leave this way of life for a while. Hopefully in the end, I'll know more about myself AND the eastern Appalachians.

Chris LeBlanc

My name is Chris "Chickenfat" LeBlanc. I graduated from college in May 2014, and started my SOBO AT Thru-hike the next month. After finishing in November, I realized if I ever wanted to hike the PCT, it would need to be sooner rather than later. So here are my unfiltered and unprofessional writings about my 2015 PCT Thru-hike. #Fattestchicken


NEVER HAVE I EVER: - Been backpacking - Written a blog - Had a nickname - Pooped in the woods - Not panicked in close proximity of a small wild animal (skunk, possum, bird, raccoon) THINGS I HAVE DONE - Lived in AR (7 years), CA (11 years), FL (6 years) - Earned my BA in Business Management - Announced my intentions to the world, via the Facebook - Sold everything that doesn't fit in my Hyundai Elantra - Accepted a job at Yosemite National Park for the next 6 months - Convinced my parents that this isn't completely insane *I think - 4 months of physical therapy to build muscle around my broken vertebrae - Purchased what some might consider "a lot of beef jerky" - Spent countless hours researching maildrops, water filtration, and the intrinsic greatness of merino wool


Hello my name is Trung Phan (trail name Chuhawk). I find myself in the strange predicament of hiking the Appalachian trail 2015. I enjoy the hike the most and anticipate seeing a lot of different people and culture on the trail. I also intend to patronage the best espresso from the trial towns.


Hiking NOBO on the Appalachian Trail. Nature lover, photographer, balloon hater. Always looking for my next adventure. I'll be writing about my journey from Amicalola Falls to Katahdin. Starting out with my buddy, Krums.

Colton Harris

Well hello there brothers and sisters!! My name is Colton Harris and i am an explorer and adventure enthusiast. I grew up just a short distance south of the Atlanta area in a town called McDonough. Hunting and fishing and spending a majority of my time outdoors was the way we grew up as kids, and now here i stand a successful thru hiker of the Benton MacKaye Trail and staring down the Appalachian Trail as my next endeavor! I love to share my adventures and hope to join some of you in yours. Happy trails!!


I love grey and beverages. Recently relocated to Richmond, VA from Austin, TX, y'all. NOBO thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2015. Exhilarating and terrifying.

Dakota Jackson

Dakota thru-hiked the AT in 2015. Dakota hails from Boston, MA, and is currently in London, where she occasionally dreams of Pasta Sides and fresh air. Described by many as reasonably funny and not too annoying.


I am currently living in the Southwest via Kentucky. After years of persistence, my husband has convinced me to thru hike the AT with him in 2015. We will leave behind our house, our cats and our jobs. What can possibly go wrong?


Lived in Shanghai for 1.5 years and am now back to discover my inner-Emerson. If you like short stories and art check, but if you're into a treacherous descent into the green-spangled unknown, this is the place. I'll be hiking NOBO with my brother Kyle.

Dennis Plato

Hey! Name's Dennis. | Long answer --> Cycled coast-to-coast in 2008 and am looking to tackle another big physical and mental challenge. Also hoping to inspire and empower others to achieve their own goals. For more on that, check out #YourHike. | Short answer --> I'm just doing it for the AT beard.

Ellen Baldwin

I'm Ellen, I'm 25, and the word "future" makes me shake in my hiking boots. Starting in April, I'll be thru-hiking the A.T. with my childhood friend, Anna.


I'm a wilderness/dog-sledding guide in Finland who happens to be from one of the warmest states in the U.S. - Arkansas. I love all things arctic, 157 huskies, and life out of doors. I've got a slight obsession with pizza, 80s action films, and The Misfits. Hiking the AT has been a dream for 3 years and I am so happy to finally be out here with some amazing people, stunning views, and the best lifestyle money can't buy.

Emily Gibson

Hey there! I'm Emily. I'm a laughter inducing, never sarcastic, 23 year old chick from Pennsylvania. I'm in school studying Environmental Science, and about 3 years ago decided that in 2015 I would hike the entire length of the Appalachian Trail Northbound. Off-trail Emily spends her free time gardening, attempting to go running (they say it's good for you), going to as many punk shows as possible, eating sandwiches, and rocking out on my bright yellow ukulele, Simon, which will be accompanying me on my trek). I'll be setting off for the AT at the end of February, and starting March 1, 2015.

Emmi Laakso

Bonafide hiker trash trying to pass as a respectable adult. I thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2015, and now I'm just biding my time until the next adventure.

Erin Tate

As an avid outdoor enthusiast, I'll be putting my biology degree to good use as I explore the Appalachian Trail with my big brother Andrew in 2015. We'll be stepping off a day after my 28th birthday. I'll also be hiking for a good cause - on the trail I'll be raising money for BECA (Bilingual Education for Central America), a non-profit dedicated to providing bilingual education to some of the most underprivileged families in Honduras (please donate at Maybe we'll even write a book about our adventures on the Trail ourselves! After the AT, I plan on going to grad school for ecology and then seeing where life takes me.


I have just turned 60 and am attempting to retire a little early. My youngest son, Ian, is 22 and will finish college this coming spring. He and I are going to thru-hike the AT southbound in 2015 leaving May 23rd. This has been something that has interested Ian since high school. I have realized that it's not going to get any easier as time passes and this looks like an ideal time to start an adventure. Ian has agreed to help me with the blog, so this will be our story - from preparation to (hopefully) standing on Springer Mountain sometime in November next year.


I'm a nearly 22 year old Oklahoma native, and I'm a full time recycle worker doing my part to save this beautiful blue dot we call Earth. But as of April 2015 I'll be a full time adventurer experiencing all the Appalachian Trail has to offer! Never ever been thru-hiking before, ain't that a pip? I decided to hike the AT after getting my Associate's Degree in basically an undecided major, and landing a great job that let me save up to do so. I'm hoping that all this time away from "normal" life will give me a chance to reflect and let me realize my calling! My trail name is Grey Wolf.

Hiker Box Special

Sorry, no AT plans but I am hoping to hike 5,000 miles on the Arizona Trail, Continental Divide Trail and Te Araroa in 2015 and 2016. I fell in love with the lifestyle on the PCT in 2013 and I want to raise awareness of these incredible trails and help fund the people that make them possible! Check out my fundraiser here:

James Perkins

I am homegrown here in Georgia! I spent the first 18 years of my life living in the same house on a gravel road in the country about an hour south of Atlanta. I regretfully did not learn to appreciate it until I got into the big city! Now I long for property surrounded by cattle farms, open meadows, and beautiful landscapes. I was raised playing outside and I've luckily found a way to continue that as an adult! Hiking, backpacking, rock climbing, or anything else that will get me active outdoors is what I am looking for. I believe that I am a long distance hiker at heart and after finishing my first thru-hike on the Benton MacKaye Trail in June of 2014 I am ready to put myself to the true test! Appalachian Trail 2015, here I come!

Jamie Molihan

This is harder than I thought it would be. I have social anxiety disorder. I have epilepsy I have two sons and a daughter; they are amazingly cool. I have a nephew that has autism spectrum disorder, and he is The Sauce. One of my sisters has extensive frontal lobe brain injury from flipping her car seven times while drinking and driving. Don't drink and drive. In the last year and a half I have walked away from my marriage and my house, lost two cousins to drug overdoses, lost my mother suddenly, and then lost my father to pancreatic cancer. My dad helped me plan some of my thru hike while he was getting chemo; at the time we thought that I would be going on the PCT, but that quickly changed because of a popular book, a popular movie, and a water shortage. I am pretty lazy. I love Starbucks. I love Starbucks ALOT. I really want to do this. I am hiking with a dear friend of mine named Scott, he is an Army Veteren. He like cats, the outdoors and me; he also can't wait to live in a tent for six months. I can't wait to come up with a trail name for him.

Jeanne Church

I am a 68 year old retired teacher living in Kalamazoo, Michigan with my husband and two dogs. I love to hike and I love to camp, as does my husband. Over the years, we have hiked many, many trails here in the United States as well as trails in England, Ireland and Scotland. This April, we will be heading out to hike the 2,185 mile Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. My husband has already accomplished this twice, but it will be my first time. Our adventure will take us about 6 months.

Jen Magnuson

I'm "Ironjen." I'm a 38 year old professional photographer with a triathlon addiction who has always felt most at home in the mountains. My Appalachian Trail thru-hike adventure is the fulfillment of a dream 26 years in the making, and it began on March 18, 2015. It's a punctuation between life in Washington, DC and life in the Rocky Mountains. I'll be hiking with my husband, trail name Muskrat, and we look forward to celebrating our first anniversary in the woods!

Jena Campbell

Hello fellow hiking enthusiasts! I am Jena and am a prospective 2015 AT thru-hiker. I LOVE food! Right now I work for a freight logistics company and am a personal trainer on the weekends(which is truly the job I love). I am ready to make a big change in my life, so why not combine my love for the woods and fitness?! My main goal career wise is to build and work a rehab facility for overweight and obese people. This should give me the kick in the butt that I need to get this started. I am really looking forward to the friendships/relationships I am going to build and the memories I will share in this journey! Can't wait to see everyone out there! Until then, happy trails!

Jennifer Legan

Hey! I'm Jen. People say that I'm generally funny, can be quite zany, and love to go on wild adventures. I have a deep love for animals and the outdoors, and have studied monkeys in several countries for seven years (see my website at for more info). So, basically, I enjoy monkeying around. My last adventure entailed 6 months of rigorous research, studying baboons in South Africa. I saw baboons grow bonds and I saw baboons get killed, and, somewhere along the way, I lost my faith in conservation. So, among many other reasons, I am thru-hiking the AT (NOBO) to reconnect with the wild and with humanity—to rediscover what makes mankind a wonderful species, and to prove to myself that I can overcome even the most drastic of challenges.

Jennifer Williams

I'm Jenn (aka Sarge) and I thru-hiked the A.T. this year! I'm a Tennessee girl, but I currently live in Alabama (bleh, it's so flat). When I'm not slinging drinks, I often escape to Tennessee, Georgia, or North Carolina. Before I even finish one hike, I'm planning the next. My father claimed "chicken" was my first word. I find pepperoni pizza boring, but love pepperoni and cheese tortillas. I love reading about zombies at night while out in the woods. I psycho-analyze people when they don't even realize it is happening. I am currently planning my 2016 thru-hikes on the John Muir Trail and the Vermont Long Trail!

Jesse Metzger

I'm an 19-year-old NOBO'er, trail named Sputnik, taking a year off before college. I've wanted to hike the AT since I was little, and, education-be-darned, I need to have my shot at it! I've been on trail since February 25th and plan to finish by the beginning of August. When not in the mountains I enjoy cooking, daydreaming about being in the mountains, whitewater kayaking, and playing intense games of Monopoly.

Jesse Smith

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived" -Thoreau, AT 2015, PCT 2016

Jessica Georgia

Originally from New Jersey and now reside in North Carolina. I am an entrepreneur, a wife, a mother, outdoors mountain lover, and have been cursed by wanderlust! Family always comes first to me. When I am not adventuring with my husband, 11 yr old daughter, and dog, Margo I am; working on client projects, getting tattooed, boxing, writing, photographing, rescuing dogs or creating. By the end of 2015 I will able to add A.T. thru-hiker to this list. I have a huge appetite for life and choose to live one full of adventures. Welcome to all the shenanigans that make up, Jessica-->

Jill Aubin

Adventure leads to mishap which leads to wisdom...or so I hope. I grew up on the Iron Range of Northern MN with time spent in the woods through out the year and summers spent in the BWCA . I fell in love with nature and all it's magical powers. I was introduced to the magazine National Geographic by my grandfather Jack at an early age. It opened up the world to me which to my adventurous, restless spirit. My husband Tom has supported me with most of them and he will be dropping me at Springer Mountain, Georgia in March 2015. My family consists of 2 grown children Andrea and Kevin and Kevin' friend Leslie and her daughter Audrey and my dog Finn.

John Kirkman

John is 32 year old small business owner who has hiked all over the country. He gets in a bit of trouble here and there but his wit makes most situations a lot of fun. Enjoy!

Joseph O'Donnell

Hey! My name is Joe, I'm 24, and I'll be thru-hiking the AT northbound starting March 30th, 2015. I'll be going by the trail name "Psych," because I'm interested in pursuing a PhD in clinical psychology at some point post-trail, and I'm also really passionate about mental health awareness and advocacy. Among many other reasons, I will be hiking to fundraise $3 per mile for the organization HIKE for Mental Health. Along the way, I look forward to blogging here, and also on my personal blog and website to keep people updated about my fundraising efforts.

Josh Goebel

I like baseball, movies, good clothes, fast cars, whiskey, and no, I'm not John Dillinger. Just your average city slicker who will be getting lost in the woods this summer on the AT! @TheJoshGoebel is the name SOBO thru-hiking is the game! I grew up in the Adirondack Mountains in upstate NY, played college soccer in Atlanta, GA, met a lovely young lady there with whom I have fallen madly in love with, followed her to her home state of Hellhio and now I am pleased to call her my fiancée! I've been selected to be an ambassador for the 2015 Thru-hike Syndicate! #thruhikesyndicate @thruhikesyndicate I get to represent some pretty awesome sponsors this year and can't wait to tell you more about it! Other than that I lover soccer, Liverpool FC, running, and my dogs! Ready to just go with the flow, roll with the punches, and ride the wave! #WhenInRome

Julieann Hartley

I'm a nutritional therapist and board certified music therapist planning on tackling the Appalachian Trail, starting April 2015. During the day, I work with children and adults with disabilities, helping them achieve their developmental goals with music therapy. In the evenings, I run a nutritional therapy consultation company, helping clients with a variety of symptoms! My goal is to hike the A.T. with the nutrient dense foods (think grain free, grass-fed meats and veggies kind of thing), so I can hike efficiently and have time to forage local wild edibles along the way. I also plan on being a bit of a minstrel, earning my keep at the occasional hostel and hut by entertaining the other hikers with my stories and songs. I hope to inspire other hikers to make music, eat well and appreciate each step of the journey. For more information about nutritional therapy, visit my website at:


Hi! I’m Robert. During an adventure and travel filled life, I have found junctions where Shangri-La, Heaven, Nirvana, and Utopia meet. This is where time stops. It is where the brain blossoms so that the mental, emotional, and physical unify. The universe collapses to finite space and the burdensome manifestations of existentialism cease. I anticipate entering more on the AT in 2015. My hope is for all of you to find similar junctions in your lives. They are not physical locations....... Recently, I entered another while surrounded by the Gulf of Thailand. There was nothing possible to do but run long distances on soft pure white sand, swim endlessly in the warmth of the sea, and contemplate the myriad forms of life’s complexities...... Due to political controversies, my Peace Corps work in the small Muslim country of Azerbaijan, which is in the middle of a very rough neighborhood, ended early and abruptly. I find myself homeless, carless, and jobless. Some would say clueless!. Ironically, an unfortunate situation provides me the perfect opportunity to hike the AT...... Consider this a friendly invitation to follow my hike and read my blog “Mingechevir to Mount Katahdin.” It has two objectives. The first is to help me wrap my head around the verbal, cultural, interpersonal, economic, and political enigmas of my Peace Corps adventure. Second, is to provide a structured writing platform where I can utilize the AT as a vehicle to learn, understand, and to communicate critical aspects of our lives and how to discover mind expanding junctions. I start hiking March 18.

Kaili Morgan

I'm Kaili, pronounced kay-lee for those who were wondering. Outdoor enthusiast, Disney freak, marching band geek, and avid reader. I am currently an Anthropology undergraduate at Mississippi State University, but will be graduating soon to take on the big wide world! Life after college terrifies me, so hopefully I'll be staying in for just a few more years to get that PhD. Before that though, I need some time for soul-searching. Life is getting me down, and I am yearning for the quintessential human experience. Enter, thru hiking. What is more human than wandering the earth by foot? Nothing, I tell you! June 2015 will see me begin my SOBO thru-hike journey at Katahdin!! Life altering experience, here I come!

Kate Spillane Balano

Hey - I am an almost 60 something grandma looking to embark on the adventure of a lifetime when I retire. I know next to nothing about camping and just a bit more about hiking, so why not hike the AT to kickoff LIFE 2.0? I have been working in Corporate America for most of my (long) checkered career. Originally a New England girl, I will be hiking homeward, starting at Springer in March.

Ken Moffat

Hi, I'm Ken. Nevis and I will be thru-hiking the A.T. as SOBOs, starting sometime in June, and assuming my ancient knees allow it, finishing around the end of the year. I've been wanting to do this ever since reading "A Walk in the Woods" long, long ago. Career (mostly overseas, 53 countries and counting), marriage, and life in general always made me say "later". Finally, retired, divorced and living in the States (WA) again, my time has come. I've done plenty of hiking, climbing and scuba diving around the world, but this will be my first backpacking. Everything in its own time. I look forward to meeting y'all on the Trail. Hi, I'm Nevis, named after Scotland's highest peak, and the incredibly handsome brains of this family. I'm a 2-year-old border collie, herder of sheep (my true love), goats, ducks, Agility dog (CPE Level 4), and bi-lingual (Turkish and English). I like all people and animals (although I know some sheep that might disagree), and I very rarely bark, and then only once. Baba only accepts low growls If I want his attention.

Lara McLellan

Raised a Clemson Tiger, graduated an Oklahoma Sooner. Animal lover, except for birds. Fluent in sarcasm. Tennis coach turned 2015 AT thru hiker!

Laura Houston

Daughter, sister, teacher, organic farmer, MBA student, I’ve had a lot of roles in my 30-years. Before joining the corporate world in the fall, there is one more role I’d like to add to the list: a 2015 AT thru-hiker. So Springer Mountain, I’ll see you in April. Until then, I’ll be planning, traveling to NZ to study abroad and trying to graduate.

Laurel and Eric

Laurel and Eric here! Hailing from the Midwest via our current DC home, follow us on the adventure that is preparing for and embarking on a thru-hike as a married couple. Between us is one life-experienced hiker and one city-girl-turned-hiker who is still, despite reassurances, slightly concerned about not wearing deodorant for six months. Because it’s perfectly normal to leave jobs, family, and life behind to embark on our NOBO 2015 thru-hike. We hit the trail April 3.

Liz Kibby

My name is Liz, and I'm one of your friendly neighborhood bloggers here at Appalachian Trials. Originally from Western Massachusetts, I am flip-flop hiking the AT this year, beginning in Virginia in May. I love to share my experiences with others, and in general learning as much as I possibly can. I look forward to many years of travel and backpacking ahead of me, and the AT will be an introduction and an initiation into the lifestyle. I hope you find my writing entertaining and informing. Happy Trails.

Liz Snyder

I like to do cool stuff in the woods and tell stories about it. I crave long adventures (affectionately known as "sufferfests") and any excuse to eat jars of peanut butter. I am most comfortable when I'm sweating or shivering or scaring the hell out of myself on sketchy mountain bike descents. I prefer to walk/bike/travel uphill rather than down. In March 2015, I'm stepping away from my beautiful life in Asheville, NC to pursue a dream hatched twenty some years ago as a kid at summer camp - a northbound thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail.

Maija Le

I grew up in the woods and it’s where I feel most at home. I’d call myself a photographer, nature-lover, world traveler, bookworm, dancing queen, dog trainer, and parent to a charismatic golden (Griffin) and his trusty sidekick (Little Bear). At the end of 2015, we’ll be AT thru-hikers. I have a passion for life and all that it brings and find true joy in discovering my place in this world. We all choose what to make of our lives; I’ve decided to make mine an adventure!


After hiking some 600 odd miles of the AT in the summer of '15, I've become completely addicted to hiking! Regardless of my luck, I'm hoping to complete a 2016 PCT thru hike. Be prepared for a lack of cohesive adventuring, some obvious colloquialisms, and non traditional hiking.

Markie Rexroat

Well hey there. My name is Markie and I'm from Indianapolis. I love travelling and being outdoors. My favorite outdoor activities are hiking/camping/backpacking, running, mountain biking, and longboarding. When I'm not doing those things, I occupy my time hanging out with my favorite people while usually consuming copious amounts of booze. I've done the whole school thing (B.S., M.P.A) and presently have an awesome job, but I've decided it's the right time (and needless to say, I'm totally stoked) to join the class of 2015 AT thru-hikers! I have so many reasons for doing this, but mainly it's because time flies, and I fully intend on living the f*ck outta some life!


A bit about me. I am 25, born and raised in Wisconsin (yes, that means my blood is mostly bratwurst, beer, and cheese). I have always been a sucker for adventure, i guess that's why no one was surprised to hear about my thru hike plans. In march 2015 I will be setting off NOBO with my dog Zeus. Besides having one hell of an adventure I will also be raising money for a very worthy cause, The Wounded Warrior Project.

Michelle Hand

Hi! My name is Michelle and I'm a 2015 NOBO Appalachian Thru-Hiker. I first set foot on the Appalachian Trail two years ago and spent my first week in the wilderness. It was one of the most liberating weeks of my life - I knew I had to go back. Two years later I'm finally about to live my dream of thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail. Not a day has gone by since I haven't thought of being back out there. Here we go!

Michelle Revoir

After 11 years in the Air Force, I finally get to knock the AT off my bucket list! With only a few hats to wear... mom, wife, veteran, and videographer... I'm excited to add blogger and AT thru-hiker to the mix. While I'm used to telling other people's stories, it's going to take some getting used to writing my own.

Mike and Grace

Mike and Grace have travelled three continents together on some truly life-changing adventures. In April 2015 they will begin a NOBO thru-hike of the AT, arguably the most difficult thing they have attempted. While thru-hiking, Grace will be writing and recording a ukulele album called "Trail Mix." Mike will be carrying nerdy talismans and hoping people start conversations with him.


Hey everybody! My name is Alexander Newlon or just Noodle for short. I'm a perpetual daydreamer, a cannabis and human rights activist, a Eagle Scout and solo adventurer. I'm epileptic and will be thru hiking the Appalachian Trail NOBO this April to show myself and others that we all CAN accomplish our dreams and turn them into reality! By completing one of my long time dreams, I hope to inspire others to follow their dreams. Get inspired and explore your local trails!

Oliver Hudgins

My name is Oliver Hudgins. Georgia Native who, when asked if he likes sports, doesn't say football. I say my sports are extreme. Mountain Biking, Fishing, Kayaking, Hunting, etc. Anything that will separate me from artificial lighting and synergistic revenue triangle graphs.

Rachel Hoyt

Hey I'm Rachel, your average Indiana English teacher with an unusual approach to her post grad years: NOBO hiking the AT. I love reading, guacamole, exploring, and deep-cleaning my car. I hate grammar, know-it-alls, sedentary lifestyles, and coffee. I'm hiking with one of my dearest friends and looking forward to an amazing and worthwhile adventure.


Rawwwwrrrrr! I'm Andrew aka Reptar. Originally from Northern Virginia but have been living the past few years in beautiful Key West Florida! I run an independent game development company and love photography and traveling. I just finished thru hiking the Appalachian Trail and loved every minute of it. Every day is a new adventure and I hope to share my experiences with everyone. Stay adventurous!


Hello there friends, my name is Ruth. I love tv shows, gear talks, reading a wide variety of books and eating a wider variety of food. I've been a Girl Scout for eight years and have a love of nature and a thirst for adventure. I have officially bored all of my family and friends to death talking about the AT and now need some fresh ears (that's where you come in!). I am planning on going on a NOBO hike starting this May. I hope you enjoy following me on that journey!


Hi, I'm Sam. Grew up on an Island. Yogi at heart. Figuring out more about who I am with every step I take. So why not walk 2,200 miles & really see where I stand!

Sara Douma

After completing the Appalachian Trail, Sara "Stretch" is trying to figure out what to do with her life. Want to hire her? Great please get in touch. In the meantime, she will be hiking, recovering from hiking, doing yoga and possibly getting her yoga instructors certification.

Sarah Tollackson

I fancy myself a photographer, occasional writer (when the mood arrests me), teacher, nature enthusiast, Kerouac adorer, dreamer, soul searcher, moon howler-at-er (...?), general wanderer, and of course, future AT 2015 thru hiker! But those are just words: empty words with empty meanings. You find the meaning of a person in actions, in their soul and spirit; in the quiet spaces surrounding their thoughts.


Day time architect, night time medic, all-around outdoor nut. Fighting off mid-life crisis by running away from life for 6 months in 2015, although I am still spinning my compass to figure out whether I will go north or south. Come join me for the fun!


Back home I go by Connor, but out here on the trail I am known only as Seeker. I graduated The University of Connecticut in the Spring of 2013, and this Fall I will be attending Law School in the Boston University School of Law as I continue working towards becoming an environmental lawyer. These in-between years have been dedicated to preparing myself mentally, physically, and financially for a little hike known to all of us as The Appalachian Trail. I am hiking to fulfill the dream that I have had since I was eleven and first discovered backpacking while growing up in the Boy Scouts. Aside from hiking, I love playing the guitar and trumpet, snowboarding, legal affairs, history, and a good IPA with a buffalo chicken wrap.


On a hiatus from medical school, Sharon is thru-hiking the AT with her boyfriend Nate. Having conquered thirteen of the forty-six high peaks of the Adirondacks, a 115-mile week-long on the North Country Trail and a month of hauling their packs around their tiny hometown, they think they’re ready to make it To Katahdin.

Smokey Bear and Home Grown

Homegrown: 27 year old male. Born and raised in West Palm Beach Florida until moving to Savannah Tennessee for high school. Studied Wildlife Biology, Ecology, and Environmental Biology at University of Tennessee at Martin. I then attended Colorado State University and majored in Forestry and Horticulture. I'm interested in anything that has to do with plants or being in nature but with a special love for mountaineering and flowers. Bailey: 4 1/2 year old Black Lab Loves long walks in the woods. Chipmunks and fish are some of her favorite animals. An affinity for water and sticks keeps her busy along the trail. Smokey Bear : Born 1987 in Captitan,NM Fern and Flower Lover. Student of life. Master Diver and Eco-Tourism Degree fuel my travel addiction. Finds friends in the midst of crowds. New appreciation for everything since becoming a Thru-Hiker.

Sonia Button

My name is Button. I find enjoyment and passion in animal welfare, whiskey, writing songs and venturing through the woods. I am currently hiking Nobo on the Appaclahian Trail.


Sprinkles is a 2012 AT thru hiker, a Smoky Mountain 900-miler, and a thru hiker of both the Benton MacKaye Trail and the Long Trail. She is currently a backpacking guide in the Great Smoky Mountains for a local outfitter and is constantly dreaming of getting out on her next long-distance hike. You can learn more about Sprinkles from her Instagram and Facebook pages, as well as her personal blog!

Stephanie Jones

Aussie girl, flying 9000 miles so I can walk 2000 more.

Stix (Maggie Quamme)

I like coffee. I love drinking. I went to school with no clear plans for using my degree. I work(ed) with both animals and kids, and adore both. When I packed up my apartment to move, I had more boxes of books than anything else. I love my cat, Odin, more than I even like most people (and in general, I like people). My name comes from the outdoors camp I worked at for many years, where I taught kids how to start fires, build shelters, ride horses, catch and clean fish, do archery, be ninjas, and other general badass-ery. People like to abbreviate my real name to MagQuam. I will be starting my NOBO hike in March 2015.

Team SeeStar (Kyler & Laura)

Laura Seeman and Kyler Star here, or better known as Team SeeStar. In May 2015, we'll be leaving behind our Vermont home to take off on our Appalachian Trail thru-hike adventure. We like to do things a little differently, so we'll be starting in Virginia, hiking north to Maine, then back to Virginia to complete our hike southbound to Georgia. Becca Baer (like bear, grrrr), Laura's cousin, is also part of our team, and might guest blog occasionally! The "threesome dynamic" is already turning out to be an interesting one. Stay tuned.

Tee Corley

I'm John Rambo, Jambo, TBird, or Tee, and for the past 4 years, I have been having a contemptuous affair - with backpacking. In 2011, I was accosted by the fat face of failure while attempting an Appalachian Trail thru-hike. Cold and alone, I returned to my home state of Massachusetts, finished my degree in History at Hampshire College, and brooded about what could have been. In April 2014, I reemerged, this time on the Pacific Crest Trail. Defiantly, I completed a continuous footpath on the west coast counterpart of the AT. Yet here I am again, on the east coast. And I say: HEY! Appalachian Trail! I'm callin' you out! 2015 will be the year my feet crumble the Trail that once crushed me. I invite you to follow along as I put this east coast rivalry, the AT vs. Tee, to bed.

Timothy Pluta

I love old-school blues, my dog, Oliver, New York bagels and most (if not all) terrible 80’s movies. For the past few years I’ve been working in insurance, living just outside Phoenix, Arizona. During the week, I worked, but on the weekends I spent my time in the canyons and wonderlands of the great American Southwest. No matter how much I tried to convince myself that corporate life was good, safe and dependable…I could never shake the calling of the wild unknown. Deep down, I knew what I really wanted -“If only I had the guts to follow my heart.” I’ve now recently left that corporate world behind, and have chosen to pursue my youngest childhood dream. This spring, I will set out to thru-hike the entire Appalachian Trail - from Georgia to Maine. Join me on this great adventure as I blog the highs and lows of trail life, on my quest for Katahdin!


Tosha completed her AT thru-hike in 2015 and is currently gearing up for a northbound hike of the PCT this May. You can read about her travel adventures from the Arctic Circle to The Appalachian Trail on her blog @


“This is the real secret of life -- to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.” ― Alan Wilson Watts I am 24 years old, trying to learn and experience as much as I can. ~Hardwork and Dedication~ I have a sickening work ethic and really trying to enjoy what I am doing in the moment. I wear a few different masks, student, athlete, backpacker, amateur boxer, hunter, supportive boyfriend ;), big brother, health nut (but don't mind drinking a few beers lol). Although I have a lot going on, I have made the decision in my life to take on the Appalachian trail with my other half (my girlfriend Lindsay) and cannot wait to be on the trail. We are counting down the days and preparing as much as possible, we will be quitting our jobs and putting some other things on hold to start writing this new chapter in our lives. We are great people with a sense of humor and always bring the party!


Allison Kieley

Like most twentysomethings, I'm a hot mess. Not the bad kind of hot mess that you find drunk and crying alone in the bathroom of a bar, but the kind who is willing to admit that sometimes your life is in shambles. In my semi-shambley life I'm wearing the hats of a nanny, server, and super dedicated Beyoncé fan. Two of the previous three occupations have helped me save up enough money to finally make my dreams of thru hiking the A.T. a reality and I will set out NOBO for Katahdin March 13, 2014.


Hi! My name is Amy. I currently reside in Huntersville, NC where I work as a nanny hustlin' fun dip and runnin' the cul-de-sac. This past December I graduated from North Carolina State University with a bachelors degree in International Studies. Essentially I took a lot of Spanish and a smorgasbord of random classes like home horticulture, introduction to companion animals, and online mountain biking (twice!-the first time didn't go so well). Now that I'm free from school, I'll be setting out to hike the Appalachian Trail in April, 2014.

Brittany Lea Neal

Hey y'all, "Rodeo" here! I'm a 22 year old graduate from Virginia Tech, a crazed horse-chick, a dirty mountain hippie and a very bad singer. I'm big on the adventurer lifestyle and am hoping to find a career that combines conservation education, journalism, and my love of the outdoors. In 2013 I broke my spine in a rather nasty horse back riding accident and since then have been planning and plotting my 2014 AT Thru-Hike with my dog, Scout the Adventure Beagle. Our goal is to raise at least a dollar a mile while hiking across the Appalachian Trail ($2,200) for the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and Spinal Cord Injury Research. We look forward to seeing y'all on the map! Happy Trails! Check out our adventure blog: Donate:

Craig Tsao

I'm a self proclaimed unprofessional life coach. Let's keep this simple. I'm born and raised in New Jersey. The highlight of my time there was spending 1 month in Special Ed during elementary school. I moved to San Diego when I was 14. I'm fairly convinced that at least 100,000 thousand virgins were sacrificed to the San Diego weather gods. I'm trying to run away from this Satanic solar panel of a city that always has 69 degree weather of pure sunshine. I did go to college at University of California Riverside and got a BS in Business Administration. But what do you care? This blog is about the Appalachian Trail. That trail that stretches ~2,100 miles from Georgia to Maine. Witness my incognito inner hippy come out, read my nowhere stories, and be inspired by my terrible life advice. By terrible, I mean excellent. For example, my adventure on the Appalachian Trail will be one hell of a terrible experience. It will be totally titties. Tag along on my journey to see the trail from the mind of a "special" guy with mild outdoor experience. This will be interesting, I promise you that. I don't make detailed plans, have any sacred vows to keep, or have anywhere I need to be. I've put aside 6 months of my life for an open experience with one simple objective: follow the white blazes. If I start chasing a plastic bag and get lost, please help.

Dayna Thomas

Hello! I'm Dayna. I hate pencils pointing at me, eggs, any kind of melon, and the color red. I love free food, my bed, The Grapes of Wrath, cycling, and Guatemala. Until my thru hike, I had never bought anything at Wal-Mart, and I believe the best way to ruin good cookie dough is to bake it. In 2013, I graduated from law school at Brigham Young University, went through the police academy (long story), and passed the bar exam. In 2014, I hiked SOBO from Maine on July 15 and finished on Springer Mountain on November 22. My thru hike made me braver, but I'm still working on it.

Ellie B.

I’m Ellie, I am 24 and from the great state of Vermont. I thru-hiked the AT in 2014. I enjoy the Constitution, health care policy, and traveling. Someday I want to be governor, but what I do between now and then is anybody’s guess.

Kayla Carter

I'm an Appalachian Trail thru hiker from class 2014! The Appalachian Trail lead me on to a new life path and gave me the skills to navigate through it. I serve on the inaugural Appalachian Trail Conservancy's Next Generation Advisory Council. I'm also a volunteer trail maintainer with the Tennessee Eastman Hiking Club. I am very thankful for the opportunity to contribute to Appalachian Trials. Feel free to contact me about anything via email — [email protected]

Micah Handy

Crazy! Raving mad! Well... At least that's what most people say when you tell them your going on a SOBO thru-hike of the Appalachian trail. The truth is though I am your average guy who grew up on a farm in upstate New York. Growing up I learned to love the outdoors, especially New York's very own Adirondack park, 3,000 some odd square miles of lakes, rivers, forest, and mountains. I have an AS in Cyber security (So you know I have to be a little bit of a nerd too. Lol) and am by no means a savant when it comes to writing, but bear with me as I am sure that something interesting is sure to pop up if only by pure chance. =)

Michael Osborne

Hey I'm Michael! I am a twenty one year old bearded adventurer from Baltimore, Maryland. I'm headed down to Georgia on March 1st to start my NOBO thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. When I'm not dreaming of backpacking all over the country (about 99% of the time), I work as a barista to fund my dreams, I am an avid collector of antiques and oddities, and always have my nose in a history book. I've never had the time to take on an adventure such as the thru hiking the AT but come late February I'll be quitting my job, throwing caution to the wind, and going on a journey of a lifetime!

Montana N.

I crave adventure like that gnawing, pit-of-your-stomach hunger. I fetishize simplicity; I am thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail for an excuse to be homeless, own only what I can carry, eat jars of PB, and do headstands atop mountains. My intended profession is writing, but I also like to rock climb, flail to live music, and get my daily dose of vitamin D. You can check out my blog at

Sarah (Ent)

Tried a NOBO hike in March 2014 and did 110 miles before deciding it wasn't for me. Learned a lot in the process, and excited to complete a section hike one day. When not hiking, I Iike writing fiction and am hoping to get a novel published in the fall. Daughter of HikerMom.

Steve Gallagher

Greetings. My name is Steve Gallagher. I am 30 years old and I will be thru hiking the AT starting in March 2014. I chose this rather unflattering profile picture because it represents the last time I accomplished a seemingly impossible goal: finishing a marathon. While running 26.2 miles once seemed impossible, spending the next 5-6 months hiking through 2,200 miles of mountainous woods from Georgia to Maine is unimaginable. It will be a true test for me, but one that I am excited to undertake. Hope you will follow along on my adventure.


Kit Brady's first mid-life crisis occured at 40, when she enrolled in college because she could not afford a convertible. After recieving a degree from The College of William and Mary in Virginia, she decided to live to at least one hundred, thereby entitling her to a second mid-life crisis at age fifty. That crisis involves hiking the Appalachian Trail.


Zach Barger is a Kick Ass Kentuckian who hails from the great city of Louisville. Zach has always loved anything outdoors from kayaking to mountain biking to golf to backpacking and anything in-between. Zach's newest endeavor will be an epic 2,100 mile journey from Georgia to Maine along the Appalachian Trail. Join him and his two pals as they attempt to hike the world famous Appalachian Trail by following his blog!!!!



My name is Jordana. It rhymes with banana. I’ve never been to Havana, but I do like Montana. When I was a kid, I used to drink Tropicana. My favorite movie is about a Jones whose first name is Indiana. In March 2013 I’ll be flying down to Atlanta. From there, I’ll begin my newest adventure and will thru-hike the Appalachian Trail-ana.


Hiker, backpacker, climber, and mother of two grown children whom she is quite proud of. Has the weird talent of being able to speak backwards, but has yet to find a way to capitalize on it. Used to get picked last for team sports in school until the day she surprised everyone (including herself) by hitting the ball out of the park and bringing her teammates in to win the game. Has six cats and has been known to go out in public completely covered in cat fur. Moved to sunny California 5 years ago (doesn't do winter anymore) and learned very quickly to never, ever kick a cactus.


A happily married housewife who grew up in the Cumberland Valley of south-central PA surrounded by farmers & factory workers, ya know, good ole fashioned American folks that work hard, love God, country, and their families. I enjoy writing and believe life should be approached with healthy sense of humor. I've served my country (U.S. Navy '83-'88) and have tried to serve my family and my God well. I believe that we are never too old to play and that when we quit playing, we grow old! Spread joy, it's free and does the body good!


Hi, I'm Walker. I am a retired Navy pilot from Atlanta. As a kid I spent a lot of time in the North Georgia mountains, not far from Springer Mountain. When I was in the Navy I always joked that when I retired I was going to grow a ponytail and hike the Appalachian Trail. Well, the ponytail isn't happening but I am going to start my AT thru-hike in April 2013. I hope you'll follow me and the other bloggers on the Appalachian Trials Blog.




My trail name is Snap and I'll start my 2017 NOBO thru-hike attempt on February 26, 2017. I've been planning/wanting to hike the trail since high school, and I'm excited to make my dream a reality. Before the trail, I worked as an ER scribe and a paramedic. I'll be attending medical school with my wonderfully supportive husband this August.

Comments 7

  • John : Sep 1st

    Please take this survey its part of our school project, we are trying to make more effective light weight hiking gear for the future.

  • DSNN real hikers : Jun 26th

    the world has come full circle.
    A#holes are even apparently through hikers now. A#holes are everywhere bust surprised to seem the on the AT.
    We had a simple But big back pack into ethan pond this weekend. Big because we brought everything for an easy trip and can sort through what gear we haven’t used since last year, what is useless, what is usefull, etc for bigger hikes over the summer. A smart thing to do before an important backpack.
    One of the kids, (everyone carrying big packs including seasoned 13 year olds., and NOT beginners by any stretch) got sick, so we stopped at Zealand hut.
    We were laughed at by a group going through (supposedly) from Georgia and, oooh, new jersey).

    Don’t judge anyone by what they are wearing or carrying every time.
    Mass#holes are everywhere, and being new hapmshire natives, we are used to inexperienced tourists.

    But I expected better from Thru-hikers.
    I am guessing many claim to be but are not.

  • Brooke : Sep 15th

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