Meet the Hikers: Alex

by sobo2013

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Every crazy idea has a mastermind. I really didn’t think that Jared and Andrew would agree to hiking the whole Appalachian trail when I called them in the middle of the night 4 months ago. But after 50 trips to REI, 100+  miles on a local trail, countless hours reading hiking forums, and a well-placed fortune cookie, we are tying together the loose ends as we finish getting ready to start our 2,180 mile trek through 14 states on the Appalachian Trail.

When I tell people that I am leaving soon to do a thru-hike of the Appalachian trail (AT), it is almost always followed by the question, “why?” There isn’t just one answer to this question. The first answer is, for the adventure. It’s a simple enough reason, but it has been driving humans to do crazy things since the beginning of history. The second reason is self discovery. My life has taken many unexpected turns during the course of this year, and I felt the need to take this time to reevaluate the direction that my life was going in. Lastly, because it sounds fun. Spending time in the woods with two of your best friends while growing beards and living on the bare essentials…can’t say it gets much better than that.

As a line cook/ chef, I think that the hardest part of hiking the AT would be the lack of food. You can only eat what you can pack, and there are certain foods that are easily packed and others that you can kiss goodbye for the duration of the hike. It’s going to be hard to not have fresh greens, roasted mushrooms, bulgogi, ratatouille, french onion soup and roasted chicken. I’m getting sad just thinking about their absence from my life. It will, however, be interesting to see what crazy trail food I can create using only our camp stove and what’s in our packs.

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