Finishing the AT and What’s Next


Heather

We did it!  I can still hardly believe it.  We started on April 6, 2016 and finished September 14, 2016.  We took a total of 18 days off (meaning no hiking at all those days), went through four pairs of shoes each, 3 pairs of trekking poles for Dan, and lost a combined total of 55 lbs!

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And on our last day we were challenged once more!

I’m now kicking myself for not blogging more often while we were hiking as I’m afraid I’m losing some of the little memories, also I would love to share some of the characters we met along the way.  It has to be said, walking 2189 miles/3523 kilometres is challenging, but it is also rewarding and fun.  I’m so glad that we took on this feat and succeeded.  With only 20% starters finishing, I also feel very proud.

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No idea why my certificate came without my trail name.

For the most part Dan and I had a wonderful time walking together for 5+months, admittedly we did run out of things to say to one another, but then our friends Kat and AJ came through with a new phone for Dan and we started having ‘podcast talks’.  What’s that you ask?  It’s when we listen to the same podcasts while walking throughout the day so that we have something to talk about at dinner, believe me it works, and Dan felt it was better than gossiping about the people we’d met.

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Stopping to savour entering the final state while listening to my daily podcast.

We both struggled with some ‘post trail blues’, I think it’s pretty normal get a wee bit depressed after something like this.  It’s also really hard to be out in busy and noisy places at first.  We made a conscious effort to stay active and not over eat, we filled our days visiting friends, and doing some ‘administration’ type stuff that needed to be done.  We’ve also both applied to college for the Fall 2017 term!

We’ve been staying with my parents since we returned from the trail and they have been very accommodating and generous but it’s time for us to get moving again.  We’ve really enjoyed the time we got to spend with our amazing nephew and niece, but they exhaust us and I think their parents are getting too comfortable with the free baby sitting, so where to now?

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New pack with a new patch

To start, New Zealand, our original plan was to complete the long trail there, but after completing the A.T. we wanted to do just some regular backpacking, with less logistics and more lazying around.  We decided six weeks in NZ, tramping (as they call it) would do just the trick, then we are off to Cambodia and Vietnam, why?  Because we’ve never been there and the Canadian dollar kind of sucks right now, so we wanted to see some new sights and experience new things with out spending all our college tuition!  After 8 weeks there, we head to Nepal for 3 months, where we plan to spend all our time tea house trekking around the Himalayas.  Last stop is England for a month to say hi to Dan’s family and friends, thought we should stop since it’s been 3 years.  I hope to blog more regularly to keep everyone up to date on our adventures, but please don’t hold me too it as we are only taking our phones and it’s really hard to blog from a phone (Dan says I have an excuse for everything!).

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Categories: Appalachian Trail, Trails, TravelTags: , , , ,

8 comments

  1. Congratulations on completing the AT, an amazing achievement!
    Enjoy your new adventures, looking forward to hearing and seeing all about them…and seeing you in England in June! xo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wishing you both another ‘trip of a lifetime’!! You know those of us who envy your opportunity and commitment will value every photo and blog post you share with us, and continue to follow your progress with more than casual interest. You’ve got some great destinations on the planned agenda and will have some extraordinary experiences. Enjoy them all!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As always we are incredibly proud of you both and all of your achievements , looking forward to sharing this next one , all be it from our sofa ! Stay safe and have fun, can’t wait to see you in June x x.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Bon Voyage and all that Dan and Heather and take great care love you both and will follow avidly x x x

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Like

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