Hikerkind Features
Appalachian Trail Thru-Hikers


If someone reading this wants to get into hiking, or potentially thru-hike one day. What’s one piece of advice? Perhaps something you wish you could go back and tell yourself.

Just Walk:

A piece of advice I would give someone for thru-hiking would be, consistency is the only thing that matters. You don't need to be fast or do big miles. General advice; Everything always works out. There is positive in everything, even windy rainy days (no bugs lol). Putting yourself through change and challenges is healthy and makes you more resilient. 


How do you feel right now?


Having been off-trail for over a month, I'm still in the midst of what hikers call "post-trail depression". Right now, I feel like I'm settling into a new space within my mind. The expereince of the Appalachian Trail stretched my mind to a point of no return. That said, I'll never really be the same person as I was beforehand. 


Why did you decided to hike the Appalachian Trail?

Cotton Candy:

I read David Miller's book, "AWOL on the Appalachian Trail." I found it in a Little Free Library near my house. I thought it was so inspiring that he talked with his wife about her watching the kids, and quit his 16 year career to walk this trail. I never heard of the trail or the concept of thru hiking before reading this book. I was impressed. It didn't occur to me until months later that I could do the same thing. I became slightly obsessed. I reached gear and watched hiker vlogs on YouTube, before I eventually gave myself a five-year goal to start hiking. That was 4 years ago! 

Also, I needed something to help me sort of pause my life. I'm at the point in my life that everyone is expecting me to get married, buy a home, and have children. Honestly, I don't know if I want that. I needed to take a step back from my life and really dive into what I see in my future. What better way to do that than thru-hiking. I wanted to build more confidence and really do something for me. 


What did you wear thu-hiking?


I changed my outfit multiple times on trail. I started in a basic tank top and Vuori running shorts. Once I had settled into trail life, I felt that my clothing was bland and didn't really express my personality in the way I wanted it to. Around Harper's Ferry, I got an amazing skirt from Eddie Bouer that didn't have built-in underwear. I also switched to a black tank top.


How did your clothing make you feel? Any sort of way?


I was super comfortable, and felt like I had gained that part of my self-expression back once I switched to the skirt and black tank. I truly believe in the "look good, feel good" motto. 


How does hiking make you feel?

Monkey Toes:

Hiking makes me feel productive like I’m accomplishing something with my life. But mainly it just makes me feel like I belong. I’m where I’m supposed to be. 


What kept you motivated?

Sargent Pepper:

Part of my motivation was because I was hiking and fundraising for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. My friend Bernard passed away from leukemia last year and I wanted to be strong like he was. The friends I met on the trail also kept me motivated they helped push me to keep going when I wanted a break or to cut short my mileage goals. 


If someone reading this wants to get into hiking, or potentially thru-hike one day. What’s one piece of advice? Perhaps something you wish you could go back and tell yourself.


Enjoy each day, even when it is hard or you want to quit. Celebrate at the end of the day one thing that you found joy in, it will keep you waking up for what is to come.

Photography By: Mario Nicholas Torres

Special Guest: Liv from Allmansright 

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