Author: Rich Mayfield

Hitch Hiking

Ever hitched a ride? Probably not. Why? Because it’s dangerous? Any statistics to back that up? NO! Of course not! It’s just dangerous…everybody knows that. There’s a certain percentage of crazies, criminals, and murders out there and that number hasn’t…

Aren’t you afraid of bears?

Look around. Humans own this planet. We are an Apex Predator. As far as the big cats, grizzlies, and sharks go, our highly developed brain has put us on top of even these fearsom predators. North America used to be…

Aren’t you a little late?

After about 1800 miles trekking through Florida, Alabama, and Georgia, I arrived at Springer Mountain in Georgia and started the AT. Ever since, every hiker I pass who knows about the trail asks me one of these questions: Aren’t you…

Do you carry a weapon?

I don’t carry anything that I don’t use on a weekly, if not daily basis. So no, I don’t carry a gun. I don’t even carry a knife. They just aren’t usefull items. “What-If” isn’t a reason to bring things…

Pennsylvania, Land of the Odd

Pennsylvania is an odd place. Here are some weird facts you may or may not know about this historic state: Flattest elevation profile, yet steepest ascents/descents. (Can you say “switchback”) Rocky terrain, yet home to the Cumberland Valley, a veritable…

What do you eat?

One can’t take all the food necessary for a long distance trek in your pack. Resupply en-route is necessary for almost every backpacking trip. Some people have elaborate package drops along the trail with precise portions and combinations all planned…

Trashbag

I don’t know why it took me so long to get on board with this. Backpacks are not waterproof. Why nobody makes a serious hiking backpack that is waterproof is beyond me. Maybe it’s because the solution is so simple:…

Where do you charge your phone?

I carry with me quite a bit of electronic gear. Yes, charging is something that I have to worry about. However, what I have does very well on the trail. When I get to town, I’ll usually stay in either a hostel…

Where do you sleep?

The AT has shelters every 10-20 miles. A shelter is a three sided shack. Some are very elaborate, and some are just a box in the woods. Most of the time they have picnic tables and fire pits which make life…

Flood Apocalypse

So I’m minding my own business following a ridge line, when I drop into a hollow (pronounced: holla!!!) and bam, there it is, a torrential wall of water. 3 weeks ago, hikers traversing this area of Pennsylvania would have been met…