On July 1, 1999, I began a five and a half month journey that took me from Maine to Georgia. Covering over 2,000 miles on foot, I experienced the wilderness like never before, made countless friends along the way, and gained a healthier perspective of myself and how I fit into the world. By December 14, 1999, I completed my trek atop Springer Mountain, Georgia. The following day I was on a plane back to Minnesota and beginning life anew. I still get caught up in the day-to-day grind, but the journey had a profound and everlasting effect on me. One of the primary rules thru-hikers abide by is “if you don’t use it every day, don’t bring it.” This would clearly be difficult to adhere to in normal life, but the lesson continues to inform my choices about material possessions. I got rid of so much junk when I returned from the trail and, although I do enjoy having certain “stuff” nowadays, it’s minimal compared to most and what I do own directly supports my passions and adventures. MEGA ’99: Adventures of an Appalachian Trail Thru-Hiker is an illustrated memoir about my experience thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail. The book is 172 pages and includes over 160 black and white illustrations (based on photographs I took while hiking the Appalachian Trial). MEGA ’99 is appropriate for readers ages 16 and up. *All fonts used in the production of Gruesome Tales are courtesy of Blambot.com*
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