This is the post I’ve been wanting to write since September 3rd 2016. The day when I walked into the Inn at the Long Trail, placed pen to paper, and made my last AT logbook entry of 2016. I couldn’t actually write the words “quit” or “going home.” I was still in disbelief of the night that occurred before, and the number in my bank account that morning.
So much has changed since then. The person I was when I left trail was the not the same as the one who started it. The person who writes this now is not the same as the one who wrote the last post. What has not changed though, is the goal, or the why:
-Hike the entirety of the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine.
-Become a better person.
To have the opportunity to even attempt the former again, I’ve had to put great effort into the latter.
Humans are purpose-built for walking. I’m convinced nearly anyone can physically travel from Georgia to Maine on their legs. Whether their mind will allow them to do that is another matter entirely. What I lacked in 2016 was mental toughness and the internal confidence it brings. So that is where I began my training.
To be able to attempt the AT again in earnest, I’ve had to address my alcoholism, and the reasons for my alcoholism. I’ve had to mature as an adult, and take charge of my finances. I’ve had to mend and also sever some relationships. I’ve had to seek out community, and humble my massive ego. Most importantly, I’ve had to shift responsibility for my life from the external (other people, the past, etc) back to myself and the present moment.
This year I am ready to hike the AT again. I’ll be leaving Amicalola Falls, and crossing over the plaque on Springer Mountain forty-seven days from today. That is my 33rd birthday, and what a gift I plan to give myself!
I hope you will follow along as I share my adventure, my gear, and my thoughts on life over the next several months.
As always friends, be kind to yourselves. Till next time!