For many hikers in the United States, The Appalachian Trail is a lofty goal they set for themselves, with the thought of thru-hiking all of it’s 2,174 miles. For the dedicated few who have the time and resources, it can generally be hiked in 4 to 5 months. For speed hikers it can be done in as little as 50 to 55 days. But for most of us, it’s difficult find that kind of time to dedicate to completing the route in one go.
In fact, most of us are like Ken Grant, whose story is published at GreenVilleOnline.com. Ken is a 58 year old school teacher who has, at long last, managed to hike the entire length of the trail. It took him 17 years of hiking small sections at a time, but he managed to complete his quest this past August.
Ken started his adventure, along with three of his close friends, with the plan to hike the AT over a 20 year period. He note that two of his friends dropped out fairly early on, and his third friend hung tough until he relocated for a new job. But Ken remained focused, continuing on his way, averaging a little more than 125 miles a year, he kept chipping away at the trail, finally achieving his goal.
The English teacher from Liberty, NC admits to being a bit sad about reaching the end. He also said that while he was finishing off those last few miles, he couldn’t help but think of all the things that have changed over the past 17 years. He became reflective in the end. But, he also demonstrated his determination.
While many would have stopped after a few years, or given up when their friends dropped by the way side. Ken may not be the fastest guy to complete the AT, but it’s still impressive that he managed to hike the whole thing, and the fact that it took 17 years says a whole lot about him as a person.
Thanks to TrailSpace.com for this one.
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