Trail Angels

So here it is, at long-last…a list of all the amazing folks who lent us a hand and made this journey possible. You have taught us so much about kindness and hospitality, and the victory of our completion is yours to share!

In order from Katahdin to Springer, they are:

  • All our families – must be listed first because they have helped us in numerous ways throughout our hike…sending us packages, visiting us, taking care of chores that were hard from the wilderness…you name it, they did it! We owe you for life (as if we didn’t before)!
  • Nicole G – picked Default and Flamebo up from the bus station, hosted us for the night, drove us to Baxter, hiked Katahdin with us, let Default borrow a bunch of her gear when her pack was lost by the airline

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  • Shaw’s Hostel – great rooms, fantastic breakfast, lots of shuttling, welcome refuge
  • Gino and Pierre – our friends who bought us dinner and drinks in Monson and from whom we earned the name “Vermont Mafia”
  • Owner of the Monson General Store – re-opened after hours so we could buy ice cream

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  • Barb and Susan – Siren’s family friends who picked us up in Stratton and fed us a fabulous breakfast spread
  • Sue from the Stratton Motel – let us make a wreck of her place for 2 days, shuttles to the trailhead
  • April P (aka Sunshine) – bought us food for a week, hiked with us in the worst weather possible, drove us all over Rangeley

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  • Bob from Gull Pond Lodge – provided a warm, dry refuge for our very wet and smelly selves
  • The Barretts – went above and beyond and shipped us 6 boxes of food
  • Andover Guest House – free shuttle back to the trail from Andover
  • Rumbles and Cardshark – fellow hikers who gave us some fuel when we ran out in western Maine
  • Cousin Russ, Aunt Jude, and the rest of Beef’s family in Tamworth – rescued us from the rain (twice!), fed us (including lobster and hand-grown blueberries), housed us, hiked with us, and did various taxiing

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  • Wildcat Mountain Ski Patrol – left the window to their hut open, which saved us in a storm

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  • Anonymous – super cool grandparents who gave us a ride from Pinkam Notch to Conway
  • Claire, caretaker at Garfield campsite – waived the fee for one person, convinced boy scouts to give us food
  • Henry and Marilyn Freeman – Henry picked us up in Franconia Notch and drove us to Middlebury (over 3 hours!) where we spent the night at his house, then the next day we borrowed his car
  • The Dickersons – hosted Default and Beef for a few days in Middlebury, picked up EKG and Flamebo from the airport, and hosted all four of us for a night
  • Meg and Karina – visited us in Middlebury and took us to breakfast at Steve’s Park Diner, fed Beef and Default dinner at Harley Grice’s also
  • Laurie and Gus Jordan – had us over for dinner in Middlebury
  • Steve B – drove us back the three hours from Middlebury to Franconia Notch
  • Mark – ride to Wentworth and back to the trail
  • John Lee – bought us a Vermonster, hung out with us in Hanover, found us an amazing place to stay, took us to church with him

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  • The Feigers (Tony, Kaylene, Andrew, Josh, Kari & John Mark) – fed us, housed us, took us to church with them, let us play with their amazing kids!

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  • The Mad Hatter – Coke and Toast Chee trail magic in VT

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  • Allie Seidel – picked us up in Rutland and fit 7 people plus packs in her Subaru, taxied us all over town, camped and hiked with us

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  • Meg, April, and Beth – drove several hours to have Italian food with us near Danby, VT

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  • Aunt Jude (and Juliet) – drove from NH to hike an 18 mile day with us to Manchester Center, then fed us at Friendly’s and played Scrabble with us

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  • Jeff and Reggie Taussig of Green Mountain House – outdid themselves with hostel hospitality – for no charge!, gave us pizza and Ben & Jerry’s, helped us take care of a sick Default, many rides

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  • Vered, Ehud, and Adam – Israeli friends who shared tea and cookies with us two nights in VT
  • Anonymous – trail magic (soda and granola bars) on Mt. Greylock (it was a VERY hot day!)
  • Anonymous – various EMT, fire department, and random folks who helped rescue Beef post bee sting
  • Alison G – picked us up in Cheshire and took us to Amherst, where she housed, fed, taxied us, and took us to mass

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  • Tom Levardi – housed us in Dalton, fed us ice cream sundaes, Little Debbies, and gave Beef Benadryl cream

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  • Cookie Lady and Cookie Man – cookies!
  • Barbie, Upper Goose Pond Cabin Caretaker – free pancake breakfast

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  • Aunt Nancy – rescued us in the rain, housed us, fed us A LOT, taxied us, loved on us

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  • Vita, Val, Don & Mario – fed us sandwiches and beer on top of Bear Mountain in NY

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  • Anonymous – hitches back and forth from deli on Rte. 17A
  • Anonymous – gave us freshly picked apples at Bellvale Farms

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  • Anonymous – couple at Bellvale Farms that let us watch their adorable one year old twin daughters playing
  • Tom and Kathleen – trail magic outside Vernon – soda and granola bars

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  • Anonymous – hitches in and out of Vernon, NJ
  • St. Thomas Episcopal Church – free church hostel in Vernon, NJ that let us stay when they were officially closed
  • Dick, Butch, Bill (and Shadow) at The Outhouse – after threatening our lives, housed us, fed us, slack-packed us, and inspired us

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  • Chris at Mohican Outdoor Center – gave us milk to drink with our “Peggy Cake” for Default’s birthday
  • Anonymous – hitch to Mechanical Man’s house
  • Mechanical Man and family – let us sleep in their garage when it was raining, let us take showers, ride back to the trail
  • Anonymous – hitches in and out of Palmerton, PA
  • Brie – invited us to the Celtic Classic festival in Bethlehem, PA for the Scythian concert

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  • Gospel – drove from NJ to pick us up from the trail and take us to the Celtic Classic festival
  • The Zanes (aka Mr. and Mrs. Beef) – drove from NY to house us, taxi us, slack-pack us, and feed us LOTS for a few days in Boiling Springs, PA

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  • Miss Vicky at the Doyle – general kindness, arranging a free ride to the grocery store
  • Shakedown Cruise – bought us lunch at the Doyle in Duncannon
  • John Garman – let us camp for $1 in his backyard in Boiling Springs
  • The Mossers – hosted us last minute at their cabin, fed us a steak dinner plus breakfast, drove us back to the trail, Jon drove from Baltimore to hang out for a few hours
  • D-wreck’s dad, aunt, and uncle – LOTS of taxiing, bought us dinner, hiked with us, slack-packed us for the Quad-state Challenge
  • John Dickinson – drove from DC to visit, bought us dinner, let us sit in his car and listen to music
  • Renee – drove from DC to pick us up, housed us, fed us, loved on us

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  • Tengu – taxied us from DC back to Harper’s Ferry with some stops on the way
  • Music Man – hiked with us, bought us food, laundry, campsites and showers, played music for us

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  • Boo-Boo – lots of trail magic and lots of taxiing in the Shenandoahs

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  • Sam and Olivia – flew from Houston to visit, and Olivia hiked with us for a few days
  • Ryan and Janie – picked us up from the trail, hosted us, fed us, and took us to church with them
  • Anne – flew from Kansas to visit us and hike for a week

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  • Anonymous – hitches in and out of Buena Vista, VA
  • Anonymous – man who gave us $20 to “support the cause” when he saw us eating 1300 french fries

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  • Cousin Jim – picked us up from the trail after hiking 4 miles uphill to meet us, brought us blueberry muffins, blueberry cake, and blueberry pie, bought us dinner twice, slack-packed us, made blueberry pancakes

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  • Sam and Damon (and sons Laven and Riley) – hosted us in Salem without even knowing us, fed us, took us through their renowned haunted house
  • Brenda at the Rendezvous Motel – lent us her car to do errands around town
  • Anonymous hunters – gave us food and water on the trail after Pearisburg
  • Senior Center in Bland, VA – free ride into town from the trailhead
  • Anonymous – ride out of Bland and back to the trailhead

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  • Mt. Rogers Visitor Center – let us have a team meeting in their conference room
  • The Seidels – rescued us in the cold from Mt. Rogers, housed us, fed us, let us soak in a hot tub, taxied us all over creation, slack-packed us

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  • Doc and Grizzly Bear – drove hours to come visit us and hang out at Watauga Lake
  • Bob at Kincora Hostel – went above and beyond normal hostel for $4/night, drove us to town, slack-packed us, invited us to do trail maintenance, shared amazing stories and wisdom

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  • Tennessee Eastman Trail Club – let us do a day of maintenance around Damascus in which we made over 200 feet of new trail and got to paint our own white blazes!

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  • The Ingrams (Ira, Angie, Jody, Kyla, Jessica, and Grandma) – probably the best-timed magic on the whole trail…rescued us from a blizzard, fed us (including homemade milk, butter, and apple butter), housed us, warmed us inside and out, drove us back to the trail, drove 10 miles to check on us the next day
  • Doc and Nina – picked us up from the trail and took us home to Boone, NC, took us to get new shoes and winter gear, fed and housed us, drove us back to the trailhead
  • Elmer at the Sunnybank Inn – charged hostel prices for Bed and Breakfast-quality stay, cooked us a gourmet Thanksgiving dinner and breakfast the next day, provided great books and musical instruments

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  • Curtis and Rockhound at Standing Bear Farm – kind and helpful hosts

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  • Newfound Gap bathroom (and those who maintain it) – amazing refuge from the frigid weather
  • Fontana Lodge staff – cheap shuttles back and forth from trail, very kind and accommodating restaurant staff, plus unbelievable chefs
  • River’s End Restaurant at Nantahala Outdoor Center – four hours worth of free refills
  • Anonymous – hitch into Franklin, NC
  • Black Betty – ride from Franklin back to the trail
  • Grizzly Bear and Popeye – drove from SC to pick us up in Hiawassee in the rain, ate dinner, taxied us
  • Aunt Bonnie – made us amazing orange t-shirts that we wore in town and on Springer Mtn.

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  • Pirate and Princess Brat at Neels Gap– went above and beyond the average hostel, fed us jambalaya, wine, and a pancake breakfast

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  • The Parishes – sent another set of personalized shirts, ribbons, and an awesome card to Springer
  • The Springer Mountain Welcome Crew – came from all over the country to help us celebrate the bittersweet end of our epic hike!

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MASSIVE thanks, and HUGE bear hugs to each one of you – and to all those we forgot to mention – you are truly ANGELS and have blessed us more than we can say!

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