[at-l] Earl Shaffer's hike

Jim Bullard jim.bullard at gmail.com
Mon Jul 4 19:22:21 CDT 2011

Once upon a time I intended to "thru-hike" but I came to understand that
(for me) it wasn't even about getting from point A to point B. I frankly
don't give a rap about what anybody, including Warren Doyle, thinks I
"should" do. I also don't care whether they think what Earl did was really a
thru. He did what he set out to do which no one had done before. He inspired
a whole lot of others to follow, some of whom seem to feel the need to feel
better than others because of some rule they set for themselves. The ATC
accepted Earl's hike as the first thru. That's the only standard that counts
and it isn't even all that important except to those who chose to make it
important. What's important is what transpires between the hiker and the
trail hiked, the experience. Turning it into a test of hiking purity,* to me
*, demeans the experience. YMMV

Jim Bullard

On Mon, Jul 4, 2011 at 7:59 PM, Felix J <AThiker at smithville.net> wrote:

> **
> On 7/4/2011 7:39 PM, Jim Bullard wrote:
> Apparently I've PO'd Felix. Sorry if you felt it was a personal attack
> Felix but I did start by saying that was the way I see it. I'm glad you
> enjoyed your hike but obviously I hike for different reasons than you.
> AND....this is the most important thing, Jim....YOU DON'T CALL IT A
> THRU-HIKE!!!!  And, I am with you 100%. That's why I section hike! Because I
> love being in the woods. I love walking. I love nature. I love it all.  I
> am, however, tired of the word 'purist' being used as a derogatory
> description of someone's hike. Everyone rides their "hike your own hike"
> horse and then calls a purist 'self-righteous', etc.  I passed every blaze
> (and, there weren't that many for a southbounder)  because that's what I was
> supposed to do. It may not be what everyone else is supposed to do.  I went
> to hike the whole trail, and that's what I did.  Are you sure we hike for
> different reasons?
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