[cdt-l] Famous Hikers
kborski at yahoo.com
Thu Jan 18 11:15:42 CST 2007
Ellerbee asked a few more questions. As Earl was
walking away, Ellerbee
asked "What has been the hardest part of the trip?"
Earl's reply? "Reporters and their questions!"
I thru-hiked the AT nobo in '98 and met Earl several
times. As soon as the other thru-hikers realized that
reporters were scouting out Earl's location constantly
(I would often meet conspicuous "day hikers" who would
start up a "nice" conversation only to end up asking
me where I thought Earl was; even once met reporters
with a camera crew and name badges on their shirts),
we began to throw them off his track and irritate
them. They were very annoying to all of us, but we
particularly did not want Earl being bothered.
It was a strange thing to be in the middle of the
woods and then see papparazzi. Seriously weird.
Nearly as weird as the abortion bomber, Eric Rudolph,
who retreated to woods around the AT that year,
sending FBI and undercover agents onto the trail.
They searched tents and commandeered shelter
But that was after the police chased the bank robber
off the Georgia AT where he was using thru-hiking as
his guise and get-away vehicle. That guy "wisely"
took the trail name "Richie Rich" after other hikers
saw him counting hundred dollar bills at a shelter
I don't know if you call these latter two famous, but
the did contribute to the attention that the AT
received in 1998 and subsequent years.
And then there's Bryson. I know some folks who hiked
with him for the few miles he was out on the AT doing
his research, but I'm not sure what year that was, and
I'm sure he wasn't as famous then as he is now.
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