Recently we’ve had some big news regarding major achievements in hiking, including the story of the first person to hike the entire length of Canada’s Great Trail. But one of the most impressive stories I’ve seen lately comes our way from Outside magazine, who are reporting on the first woman to complete the “Triple Crown” of hiking in a single year.
On November 9, Heather Anderson (Trail Name: Anish) finished her latest full hike of the Appalachian Trail and in the process became just the sixth person, and first woman, to complete the AT, the Pacific Crest Trail, and the Continental Divide Trail – the routes that make up the Triple Crown – in a single calendar year. Anderson has done each of those trails twice in the past, and has even achieved speed records on the AT and PCT, but this is the first time she’s ever completed all three in a single go. That makes her the first woman to achieve a “Triple Triple” as well, completing the Triple Crown three times.
Anderson’s quest for the calendar year triple began back in March when she and her soon-to-be fiancé began hiking north on the AT. They went as far as the Connecticut River in New Hampshire before stopping, taking a break, and heading west to spend a few weeks on the CDT. On May 22 they headed further west to launch their full trek hike up the Pacific Crest Trail traveling northbound until they finished the entire route in August. From there, it was back to the CDT, heading south out of Glacier National Park to Northern Colorado, knocking off most of the remaining miles on that trail. In October, they returned to their exit point on the AT and hiked it all the way to the end, before returning to Colorado one more time to finish a very short section of the CDT that had yet to be completed.
That’s a pretty round-about way of getting the Triple Crown, but it doesn’t matter how you do the trails so long as you get them all done. And since the first hike started back in March and ended in November, Anderson had no problem meeting the calendar year requirements for this Triple Crown attempt.
As you can imagine with such an ambitious undertaking, there are plenty of stories to be told from the trail and challenges that had to be overcome along the way. Outside shares a lot more details about what that was like in their story, including very long days without much to see or do other thank walk and unpredictable weather that played havoc with the trail at times. Through it all, Anderson and her fiancé pushed on, covering nearly 8000 miles (12,875 km) in just a few months time.
This is an impressive achievement to say the least. Congrats to Heather for finishing the Triple Triple and doing it all in such a short time.