Appalachian Trail Happiness: Let’s Help Reunite Some Hikers
Without a sense of caring, there can be no sense of community. ~ Anthony J. D’Angelo
These days on the Appalachian Trail we really have it easy in some respects, primarily in communication and keeping track of our fellow hikers. On the trail we have cell service, we stay connected to our group through texts or Facebook. A lot of us blog and allow others off-trail, including those who’ve had to leave the trail to follow our progress and stay in touch. That wasn’t always the case.
Recently, I was contacted by a former AT hiker who truly missed his past hiking community. Mike had to leave the trail due to a fairly severe injury and never got a chance to say goodbye to his trail family and 20 years later still thinks about them and misses them. This is what he had to say when he first wrote me:
As a 40-year-old that has never been the same since that adventure. I truly miss my trail comrades. My hike was pre Facebook and I didn’t have email, not sure if anybody else did. I dislocated my hip near Delaware Water Gap and wasn’t even able to say good-bye to my hiking crew. I long to share a beer or sit around a campfire with them. They are long-lost best friends. ~ Mike aka Freebird 1995
We’ve all felt like this, I’ve written previously about the sense of community on the trail, and even those of us in touch with our hiking family feel the same way Mike does. It would be beyond wonderful to be able to just sit and hang out with those folks. Your trail family becomes beyond precious to you as a hiker.
So, let’s put the power of the internet to good use for a change, share this post far and wide, get the word out to all of the older hikers you know, hostel owners who’ve been around etc… Let’s see if we can’t hook Mike up with his crew, here is some more information to help us find these folks.
Mikes two closest hiking companions were Nickname or Nick Lovetro (sp?) from Boston if memory serves but not written anywhere. Also T-Rex, Rex Blunck, retired Air Force. T
Also, the next catagory, people I would like to meet up with in some sort of reunion camp out situation: Kevin aka King, Wayne aka Professor, Joe aka Snore-a-saurus, Wolverine, Weeble Wooble and partner Joe, Pathfinder, Bloodroot, Crazy legs and Dutchboy, French Fry and Ketchup, McP’s (Claire and Malcolm) from Scotland. These people or couples really helped make my journey very pleasant and got me through some hard times.
Let’s help our a fellow hiker, again, please share this post out and if you have any leads you can refer them to me here at the Ministry of Happiness at my e-mail, Happinesskane@aol.com.
Please friends, I really think this would be an amazingly cool and kind thing to pull off for Mike, especially around the holiday season, I know you’ll help because your hikers and we look out for each other, thanks in advance and have a happy day. ~ Rev Kane