For A.T. thru-hikers reaching the halfway point, the wooden spoon is a coveted prize. Jalen DeSantis chose “shaggy” as his trail name because his hair is long enough that he can pull it back in a loose bun and shaggy enough that a mouse got tangled in it during a night in one of the…

Read More

When Grizel Williams decided to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail with Rue, her 3-year-old rescue dog, she knew a lot of people would have an opinion about her decision. “There are people that are really excited about me and Rue, and then people who think I’m abusing my dog,” she said. “I know that it’s the…

Read More

Knoxville’s first climbers to summit Everest help save a Sherpa along the way Ang Dawa Sherpa peeked his head into our tent and nodded. “Go time” caught me off guard. I was at Camp 4 with my friend Neal Kushwaha and our sherpas—Sange and Dawa—hoping to become the first Knoxvillean to summit Everest. My thoughts…

Read More

Warren Doyle hangs up his boots after 38,000 miles on the A.T. Warren Doyle knows how this story should begin. “A 46-year-old love affair ended last summer,” he says, staring at me across a hardwood table at his folk school in eastern Tennessee, midway between Mountain City and Damascus, Virginia. Doyle is celebrating the completion…

Read More

My instinct told me to run. It also told me not to run while the man could still see me. Feigning calm, I walked slowly away from him and out of his sight. The moment I felt sure he could no longer see or hear me, I ran. It was spring,  and I was hiking…

Read More

What role do print maps play for outdoor adventurers in the digital age?  Pisgah Map Company’s Pete Kennedy has a few ideas. Pete Kennedy has never worried about his ability to make good maps. When the first batch of his first product arrived from the printer a decade ago, he could see that, of course,…

Read More

An Appalachian Trail thru-hike is an incubator for several business pioneers in Southern Appalachia Famous thinkers throughout history have touted the benefits walking can have on our ability to think creatively, from Aristotle and the Peripatetics (literally, “one who walks about”) to Henry David Thoreau. German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche even went so far as to…

Read More

Man thru-hikes the Florida Trail with his blind dog, carrying her 800 miles Kyle Rohrig “The Mayor” and his dog, a Shiba Inu named Katana, are no strangers to long-distance hiking. Years ago, the duo successfully thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail together. When Katana was five, glaucoma caused her to lose vision in one of her…

Read More

Looking for a different kind of thru-hike? Try one of these less-crowded long-distance trails Since Earl Shaffer claimed the first Appalachian Trail thru-hike in the 1940s, hikers from around the world have set out on the 2,200-mile trail in search of something.  The power and solitude of the trail has been well documented in popular books,…

Read More

SHARE THE LOVE: JOIN THE I HEART PISGAH ADVENTURE TEAM Are you a runner, biker, paddler, hiker, triathlete, adventure racer, or climber who wants to help protect the places where you play? Join our I HEART PISGAH Adventure Team, which includes elite athletes and everyday adventurers who love exploring, enjoying, and protecting public lands. You’ll…

Read More

Bob Peoples, owner of Kincora Hikers’ Hostel in Hampton, Tennessee, says that his hostel will soon reach a huge milestone. In April, Peoples anticipates hosting his 25,000 hiker along the Appalachian Trail. The AT legend opened his hostel in 1997 and has been providing shelter and hospitality to hikers along the trail ever since. For…

Read More

Woman completes Triple Crown of hiking in a single year When Heather “Anish” Anderson’s boots touched the ground in Grants, New Mexico this November, it marked the first time a woman had completed the triple crown of hiking in a year. In just over 8 months and nearly 8,000 miles, Anderson walked the Appalachian Trail,…

Read More