Mighty Blue On The Appalachian Trail: The Ultimate Mid-Life Crisis-logo

Mighty Blue On The Appalachian Trail: The Ultimate Mid-Life Crisis

Outdoors

An overweight, 61-year-old retiree, with zero hiking experience, decided to hike the entire 2,185.3 mile length of the Appalachian Trail in 2014. What could possibly go wrong? As his brother, Mike, commented, "It's a bit like taking up boxing and fighting Mike Tyson in your first bout." Join Steve and his guests as they discuss all aspects of the trail, from gear to Lyme Disease, then back to trail magic and injury.

An overweight, 61-year-old retiree, with zero hiking experience, decided to hike the entire 2,185.3 mile length of the Appalachian Trail in 2014. What could possibly go wrong? As his brother, Mike, commented, "It's a bit like taking up boxing and fighting Mike Tyson in your first bout." Join Steve and his guests as they discuss all aspects of the trail, from gear to Lyme Disease, then back to trail magic and injury.

Location:

United States

Description:

An overweight, 61-year-old retiree, with zero hiking experience, decided to hike the entire 2,185.3 mile length of the Appalachian Trail in 2014. What could possibly go wrong? As his brother, Mike, commented, "It's a bit like taking up boxing and fighting Mike Tyson in your first bout." Join Steve and his guests as they discuss all aspects of the trail, from gear to Lyme Disease, then back to trail magic and injury.

Language:

English

Contact:

9415249410


Episodes

Episode #260 - Juliana Chauncey (Chaunce)

3/4/2021
It's one of our longest ever shows today, with three guests and my book reading. First up, Juliana Chauncey, a fellow member of the Class of 2019, and a fellow podcaster (with Zach Davis on Backpacker Radio), shares her hiking journeys on both the Pacific Crest Trail and the Appalachian Trail. While originally from the Eat Coast, Chaunce knew virtually nothing about the AT before she started; she only found out about MacAfee Knob when she came to it!! However, a combination of...

Duration:01:52:26

Episode #259 - Brittany Briley (Mooney)

2/25/2021
Brittany Briley's smile lit up the trail in 2019, and we first met at Woods Hole Hostel. A nurse by training, she felt that the time was right to take a break in her early 30s and hiked the Appalachian Trail as joyously as anybody I met out there. We didn't hike together much but, as is the way of the trail, we often saw one another. Brittany shared part of the trail with the sadly missed Pony Keg and his dog Blue. Eventually, Brittany teamed up with previous guests on this show and...

Duration:01:41:15

Episode #258 - Joseph Barnett (Subway Gramps)

2/18/2021
Joseph Barnett had quite the adventure hiking the Appalachian Trail during the latter half of 2019 and the first half of 2020. He faced a bunch of problems, took days off regularly to explore the towns around the trail with his wife, developed a hernia along the way, yet emerged at Springer Mountain battered but victorious. Along the way, Joseph documented and photographed people, plants, and animals, eventually producing a 500-page book he'd like to share with everybody. Quite how we're...

Duration:01:35:08

Episode #257 - Dan Gosmeyer (Shoeless)

2/11/2021
We have another of my Class of 2019 brothers on the show today. I met Dan Gosmeyer pretty early on the trail and recall his quiet determination but, with a tiny hiking budget, I had doubts he'd get to the end. But the trail does something to a person. It reveals character that you may not have even known was there. Sure enough, sometime last year I received a friend request on Facebook from Dan and confirmed immediately. I checked out his page and was delighted to see that I'd been wrong;...

Duration:01:18:35

Episode #256 - Caroll Coyne (Cheer)

2/4/2021
Today's guest is another whose thru-hike was the Pacific Crest Trail, yet Caroll Coyne has lessons–and solutions–that are universal to all long-distance trails. In her early 30s, she quit a well-paying job that wasn't fulfilling her and found that fulfillment out on the trail, with the community that she craved. Returning home, her trajectory altered and her project to reconnect with the hiking community was born. You can learn more about Caroll and Thru-R at https://www.thru-r.com/. In...

Duration:01:16:42

Episode #255 - Erik Russell (Lars)

1/28/2021
We have a couple of interesting topics on the show this week. Our first guest, Erik Russell, wrote to me to convey a notable if somewhat jarring, incident that he witnessed while hiking the AT in the 1997. Erik took a lot from both the hike and the incident, and he tells us how those two things contributed to help shape the man he is today. Erik is one of the few guests I've had on the show who had to search high and low for pictures of him hiking! Eventually, he found the only two that...

Duration:01:24:28

Episode #254 - Tina Tempest (Chunky)

1/21/2021
It's lovely to interview somebody you've met and spent time with before. So I was delighted when Tina Tempest agreed to come on the show and share what happened during her 2009 SOBO hike of the Appalachian Trail with her friend. She has always had a desire to travel and fills in her background with one or two of those stories as well. Tina went on to buy a property and start what became one of my favorite hostels on the trail; The Quarterway Inn. Obviously, Covid gave her a hard decision...

Duration:01:25:16

Episode #253 - Reid Marshall and Marina Santiago (Wombat and Brown-Eyed Girl)

1/14/2021
This week, we feature a couple who met on the trail in 2019 and have been a couple ever since. Reid Marshall and Marina Santiago are, however, locationally challenged, as Reid is in Australia and Marina is in Denver. I was fortunate enough to have met Reid on my thru-hike and was impressed with his calm and thoughtful demeanor. When we met, near the VT / NH border, Reid was on his own and didn't meet Marina until many miles later. Such is the serendipity of the trail. They share the...

Duration:01:11:42

Episode #252 - Mike Current (Energizer)

1/7/2021
We normally focus on the Appalachian Trail, but this week, we're moving across the country to share the hike of Mike Current on the Pacific Crest Trail. Mike's YouTube channel provides a thoughtful and entertaining take on hiking. He and Steve chat about the hike and his intense preparations prior to the hike. Mike is particularly keen to make sure that the 2020 hikers' stories are told, believing that 2020 will become a lost year. If you'd like to follow Mike, you can see him on...

Duration:01:23:36

Episode #251 - Steve Yale (Walmart 2021)

12/31/2020
We're back to our three-segment show this week, with Steve Yale, or Walmart 2021, as our principal guest. Steve got his name when he first hiked the AT in pretty much all-Walmart gear. He has since worked out better options, but his love of the trail shines through in both our conversation and his devotion to a life of thru-hiking the AT. In contrast to the negative responses that some people experience on Facebook, Steve has been embraced by the Facebook community, gaining support and...

Duration:01:32:29

Episode #250 - Trevor Hendry (Bear)

12/24/2020
It's a shorter show today, though I think the content is as compelling as ever. This week's guest is Trevor Hendry, or Bear. Trevor's 2020 thru-hike presented him (and his fellow hikers) with unusual problems that he had to encounter and deal with. However, as I've found with some of this class of 2020, his experience–while not the same as previous hiking years–was equally rich as any other. He even found himself slowing deliberately towards the end as he was relishing his...

Duration:01:03:38

Episode #249 - Matthew Norman (Odie)

12/17/2020
We've got an old friend on the show today. Matthew "Odie" Norman is one of those good people of the trail. He lives it, he breathes it, and he shares it, with his Hiker Yearbook that reconnects hikers after the trail. Odie reached out to me recently and wanted to give me a recap of how he sees the hiking season of 2020. As you'd imagine, he has plenty to say that makes sense and wears his heart on his sleeve throughout our conversation. If you'd like to learn a little more about Odie...

Duration:01:13:44

Episode #248 - Larry Knight (McGyver)

12/10/2020
This week, Larry Knight shares his Appalachian Trail thru-hike story. It was never really a bucket list item for Larry but, as often happened, a confluence of events culminated in Larry finding himself at Springer Mountain, heading north. Injury curtailed the first attempt, but Larry returned to finish the job the following year. When Larry was finished, he wanted a memento of the trip and started thinking about a map that would be personal to him and his hike. This has developed, and a...

Duration:01:08:18

Episode #247 - Stephanie Logan Hall (Puffin)

12/3/2020
Another really full show this week, with four segments. First up, there is a recently minted thru-hiker, Stephanie Logan Hall, who completed her SOBO hike on November 19. I was particularly keen to hear from her and her early impressions–which will doubtless change with time–of the trail and her adventure. Those of you who regularly listen to the show will know how impressed I am by these young women who take on the trail. It is clear to me that the world is in safer hands as they become...

Duration:01:45:56

Episode #246 - Matthew Emerson (Prada G)

11/26/2020
We have a story today of a young man who walked away from a life of extreme poverty to find himself (literally) on the Appalachian Trail. Matthew Emerson's story is now a book, and his visceral experiences set the scene for his journey and a new life at the end. Matthew's insights gleaned from his hike resonated with me, and we share a frank discussion for this Thanksgiving Day. You can find Matthew's book on Amazon. Click the picture of the cover and you'll be taken there. Another...

Duration:01:09:27

Episode #245 - Alan Carpenter

11/19/2020
Another full show today, with Alan Carpenter taking up long-distance hiking in his 60s and still going today, well into his 70s. Alan's story is a testimony to his persistence, while his joy at the people and sights of the various trails he has done shines through. He does get a little banged up from time to time. In our conversation, you'll hear about how he got his legs into the state you see below. Ouch!! You can learn more about Alan and his hiking at...

Duration:01:24:39

Episode #244 - Julia Sheehan (Rocket)

11/12/2020
It's a slightly shorter show this week, with Laura Sheehan, or Rocket, as our principal guest. Julia was a member of my last AT class; the Class of 2019. We never met on the trail, but I was made aware of the popularity of her YouTube videos. She is a very self-aware hiker, acknowledging the changes she saw in herself, having sold everything to uproot her life and hit the AT in 2019. Like many hikers, she learned to live with less and now uses her YouTube channel to record further...

Duration:01:13:31

Episode #243 - Dan Schoenthal (Tremor)

11/5/2020
This week's guest, Dan Schoenthal, is an unlikely thru-hiker. He suffers from Parkinson's Disease and, as you'll learn, he has pushed through this impediment, getting an impressive start on the 2200-mile journey. I spoke with Dan a few weeks ago, and he mentioned a fund-raising effort he was making in conjunction with his hike. That particular fundraiser has now ended, but if you know somebody stricken by the condition and would like to help, here is a link to the Parkinson's Foundation,...

Duration:01:36:00

Episode #242 - Jillian and Logan Ivey (The Purple People)

10/29/2020
Anybody who shared the trail with me last year must have heard of the Purple People. They seemed to be ubiquitous, turning up night after night at hostels, shelters, and homes to play their own music to lighten everybody's lives. The fact that they wore and carried everything in a vibrant lilac color didn't exactly allow them to blend into the crowd. These are two people with a distinct sound, a memorable appearance, and a giving nature. When I was able to interview them for the show,...

Duration:01:37:53

Episode #241 - Rob Landry (Fly by Night)

10/22/2020
I first met Rob Landry (virtually) when he reached out partway through his 2020 thru-hike attempt. He was thinking about writing the book of hiking during a pandemic and wanted a little publishing advice. So it delighted me to hear from him when he finished his 2020 hike and I invited him on the show. The finish, however, wasn't what I expected, and nor will you. If you'd like to see more of Rob's hike, check out his Instagram account at https://instagram.com/flybynighthike Leanna...

Duration:01:41:00