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Off the Trail, on to the Next Stage of My Life

It's strange, watching the landscape roll by without having to work for it.

I write this from a bus, hurtling down a highway from Blacksburg to Roanoke, VA. I am borne passively along in a cushioned seat, my pack--constant companion of these last two months--occupying the spot next to me. I'm not using my muscles, and the views are spooling past much too fast.

I have left the Appalachian Trail after 660 miles of foot travel. I have received the job offer I've been working towards for the last right years: a permanent position at Joshua Tree National Park with more responsibility and more room for creativity than I've had before. It's a phenomenal opportunity, an offer I couldn't refuse.

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Ask a Thruhiker: Your Questions Answered

In which I answer your questions about life on the Appalachian Trail! Ever wondered how many women are on the trail? Or if there are any things duct tape cannot be used for? Read on.

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Curious About Thruhiker Life?

I’ve been on the Appalachian Trail for six weeks, and have passed the 500-mile mark. Are you curious about what life is like for me and the other thruhikers out here? I will write a blog post answering your questions.

Ask anything you like in the comments below or by tweeting @RangerCathy, #AskAThruhiker. Be prepared to wait a week or two for my response – I don’t have many good opportunities to write while I’m on the trail!

Right before starting my hike, I posted a thruhike FAQ here. If you know you have something you want to ask but aren’t sure what it is, that might spark some ideas.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

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Blogging from the Trail: Harder than Expected

Well, I’ve been on the trail for six weeks now, and I’ve written only two blog posts! It turns out that thruhiking doesn’t actually leave very much time for writing. I wake up in the morning, eat, get water, pack up camp, walk all day, make camp, cook dinner, and go to bed. I write in my (real, physical) journal once I’m tucked in, then fall asleep. The next day, it’s the same thing all over again. Read more

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