As always, we met and saw some great people from all walks of life on our hike. From NOBO's, SOBO's, Traditional Flipper Floppers, various versions of a Flip Flopper, LASHer's, SASHer's, Day Hikers, Half Ganners with a full twist...oh wait... that is competitive diving!

And meeting people in the hiking community is and always has been special because even though there are various reason why we hike, one thing for sure is that we have a common thread of loving the outdoors and adventure; Kindred Spirits. This is not everyone we met, but still an array of our fellow hikers and a bit of their back stories.

First day out we met "Fire Shine" and Liz who were on a 7-day Hike. And they probably had the most enthusiastic attitude of anyone we met!

First night out we stayed at Hightop Hut and met Tim (an ICU doctor at UVA), his son Tim and Grayden a friend on a 3 day hike. Dr. Tim definitely needed some downtime from a stressful job and it was great he was sharing it with his son.

This is "Dirt Fox", a Thru Hike Flip Flopper it was heat exhaustion...but we saw a dozen or so Amish women out for a "stroll" on the AT.

"Goblin", a Thru Hike Flip Flopper. Doesn't he look like a young Ozzy Osbourne?

Trevor, ex-military, doing 65 miles in the Shannies......but hopefully not barefoot!

This is "Scurvy", a Thru Hike Flip Flopper. Sandy particularly liked his head band (she likes anything chile pepper related)!

"Water Doc" from Maine. A SOBO thru hiker.

"Thumper" (not the rabbit) a SOBO thru hiker

" Locomotive" (Thumpers hiking partner) from The Netherlands. Her trail name? She got it because she is a constant and steady hiker that can hike all day long!

"City Slicker" a Flip Flopper going SOBO. Dudes got some bright red hair!

"G.O." from Wisconsin. A thru hike Flip Flopper that will flip to Katahdin once he gets Harpers Ferry.

Met "Possum" (on the left), a section hiking Grandma of 6 from Georgia, and "Bear" a SOBO section hiker from New York at Rod Hollow Shelter. Would you say that one person was happy about her picture being taken and the other.....not?

One of the many unsung trail angels we saw.....the trail maintainer!

"Olive Oil"......a Thru hike flip flopper

Near the MD/PA border we met a lady, "Prime Time", and her daugher on a short AT hike with a fascinating story. " Prime Time" leads and organization called "PRIME TIME FOR WOMEN, which is an "inspiring, caring community that helps women in their prime be seen, be heard, and live healthier lives." Which is how we happen to meet her. Every week of the year, "Prime Time" takes a different woman on a hike of the AT to start/continue that experience of the outdoors and how hiking can result in a healthier life sytle. Very Cool "Prime Time"!

Met Darryl, a Ridge Runner for the Potomac Appalachian Trail Conservancy, a couple of times. Who gave us some great and critical info on water sources.....or lack of them. Many thanks Darryl!

This is Greg, a mushroom hunter. A happy-go-lucky guy. Maybe due to the "magic mushrooms"?

Met "Moose", a SOBO thru hiker taking a water break around mile 1,116.

This is "Zebra", a SOBO thru hiker from California that we met in Duncannon, PA. Awesome person with ALOT of long-distance hiking on her shoes. She has hiked the PCT twice and now the AT. What a bad ass!

.....and this is "Zebra" finishing her SOBO at Springer Mtn. Congrats "Zebra"!!!

This is "Sunshine". A teacher and coach when he is not hiking AND a SOBO thru hiker from Iowa.

This is "Discount", a recent college grad from University of Minnesota (so many multiple majors I lost track of his credentials!). Also a SOBO thru Hiker taking a gap year off before venturing out into THAT world beyond the great wilderness of the AT. By the looks of his empty bowl, his hiker hunger is still going strong.

This is "Doorman" from Asheville, North Carolina. Not sure of what his hiking status is but for sure he was carrying a lot of heavy gear!

Met this guy with his dog but never got his name but.......

.....come to find out he was the trail angel that left hikers much needed clean water!

Met "Hype" (on the left) from Connecticut and "Oracle" from Massachusetts at the 501 Shelter; both SOBO thru hikers. "Hype" had one of the best attitudes of the thru hikers we her sister graduated from Michigan State!

"Hype" and "Oracle" finishing their thru hike at Springer Mountain on November 13th! Total congrats!!!

Met a couple of section hikers on day 25; "Hair" and "Off Balance".

Met "Pinnacle", a seasoned local section hiker on our way to Eagles Nest Shelter. He was a wealth of info on the section we will hike over the next few days.

One of my "training hikes" prior to starting my LASH this year was at Newfound Gap with some "future LASHer's or Thru Hikers"😊.


My daughter Shannon. If it wasn't for her bad knees, she would be all over LASHing the AT with me!

4 of my grandchildren. There trail names? "Ladybug", "PW", "Little Lizzie" and "Little Bit". And they could really motor up those hills😊

Nick, Jacque, Kim, Bob and Vincent - they really need trail names!

Being a LASHer, we don’t form too many Tramily’s during our hikes, but I have the fortunate pleasure to have a “permanent” Tramily one might say. They were not with MacGyver and I in-person this year on the AT, but they certainly were in spirit and moral support….and this Tramily was also a key part of my physical and mental preparation this year as well as the past 4 years prior to hiking the AT. It’s a backpacking group I belong to thru Meetup and what a privilege it has been to be associated with this group and have these people as my friends. Collectively they have a VAST amount of experience, such as Thru Hiking and Lashing the Colorado Rockies, AT, PCT, CDT, The Pinhoti trail, the 900-miles of the Smokie Mountains, The Shaltowee Trace and dozens more long-distance trails……and have collectively hiked tens of thousands of miles over the years.

A BIG SHOUT OUT to them and the experience and knowledge I have gain from them! Below are just a few of the dozens of people in my “permanent” Tramily!