The history of thru-hiking is rooted in “walking off the war.” After returning from World War II, veteran Earl Shaffer became the first person to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail. Many veterans have followed in his footsteps, including Marine Corps veteran Sean Gobin. This life-changing experience inspired Gobin to found Warrior Expeditions, which enables fellow vets to follow suit. Learn how thru-hiking provides a magical recipe for mental and physical health.
Special Out and Back co-host The Real Hiking Viking joins Shanty to chat with hiking legend Zach “Badger” Davis. Badger shares how meditation and mental preparation helped him complete thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail despite having zero backpacking experience. He shares how that thru-hike changed his life, leading him to write Appalachian Trials and found The Trek. Plus, Viking and Badger share wild stories from their joint PCT thru-hike.
Episode two of the Out and Back podcast drops today featuring thru-hiking legend the The Real Hiking Viking. In this episode, meet free-spirited and fun-focused Thomas Gathman, who picked up the Viking trail name due to his Norse-like beard and his warrior status as a former Marine Scout Sniper. Viking served two combat tours in Iraq before coming home, selling all his possessions in 2013, and hiking more than 20,000 miles on America’s longest trails. Tune in to hear Viking’s story about how he turned from sniper to pro hiker and never looked back.
Once a year, fleeting reds, yellows, and oranges light up national parks across the country. So, if you’re looking to take in the foliage from the trail, how do you choose which parks to visit of the 61 in the U.S.? Learn about the best national parks to visit this October, top hikes for fall foliage, and helpful tips for the trail.
Download a full dataset of maps and tracks for the Appalachian Trail on gaiagps.com. The organized folders include official trail and waypoint data from the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. Sync the…
We’ve been remiss in introducing everyone over the years, so we’re doing short profiles on the folks at Gaia GPS. We introduced Aileen Gardner last week, and going chronologically backwards in time,…
Last July, Andrew Baldwin set out southbound on the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail thru-hike. His previous year, filled with untethered travel throughout the US, left Baldwin searching for a purpose. Determined to find clarity paired with unbridled challenge, he joined just three percent of hikers who choose to hike north to south on the AT. Along the way, he found his trail family, wrangled the voice inside his head, and emerged with a new outlook on his life.
Read more to meet the host of the new Out and Back podcast.