What’s in a Name?


A right of passage when doing a long hike is receiving a trail name. When we started we watched as people scrambled to name each other, wanting to be ‘christened’ moments after arriving on the trail, we tried to avoid it, but there is no escaping being given a trail name. So without further ado our names and how we got them.

Orange Crush = Dan
Dan was named fast, we met a guy named “Nemo” on our second day. At our initial meeting we gave our real names but when we ran into him again later all he could remember was Dan had a bright orange shirt on and could crush him (this guy is tinier than me) so he just  kept calling him Orange Crush.

Orange Crush looking for something to crush.

Orange Crush looking for something to crush.

Lightfoot = Heather
Despite the lack of originality in mine it was given to me. Every time I would call to make a hotel reservation the person on the other end of the phone would always question me once I told them my last name. “We need your real last name ma’am.” “We need the name that appears on your card ma’am.” “We only accept your real name, not your trail name.” After one such phone call, they other hikers who witnessed me explaining that Lightfoot truly is my last name, decided that I should just embrace it and gave me the trail name, Lightfoot.

Look how light my foot is!

Look how light my foot is!

Hiker Trash = Not Us
Unfortunately a name that is associated with all thru hikers and I can’t stand it. We are not trash, we are hikers/adventurers/anything but trash. Yes, sometimes we get a bit stinky, yes we believe in the 5 second rule when food is dropped but that does not make us trash. We’ve seen some hikers really embrace this and behave like, well trash, but for the most part our fellow hikers are anything but trashy.

Categories: Appalachian Trail, Hiking, USATags: , , ,


  1. It is strange for me to say as I never realized that people who hiked the Appalachian trail were given trail names but…your trail names really suit you both. Have you given any hikers a name yet? Love to see those big smiles. Happy Hiking! xo


  2. Brilliant trail names , Don’t worry about the short sighted judgemental people, they pop up everywhere, I am sure when they meet Orange crush & Lightfoot they change their minds, By the way, the 5 second rule works brilliantly in Brewood too !


  3. Your trail names are great, I like your pictorial interpretation too !
    FYI. The 5 second rule works well in Brewood too, has to, how clumsy I am , we would starve otherwise !
    Have fun & stay safe, love you loads x x x


  4. Brilliant song names, liked your pictorial interpretation of them too ! FYI the 5 second rule is always in play in Brewood !
    x x x


  5. Dam the predictive text , I typed trail names !


  6. I always wondered the origins of trail names. One of my friends was so excited when she earned the name “Dirtface” on the Appalachian Trail. BTW, have you come around my blog recently? Haven’t seen you in a while, come and visit!


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