The Thru-Hikers Who Finished the AT During the Pandemic
Andrew Underwood knew that if he was going to finish the Appalachian Trail without involving the police, he couldn’t afford to sleep in.
Over almost four months, Underwood—or “Denver,” as he was dubbed early in the hike, after his hometown—had walked nearly 2,200 miles, climbed the equivalent of Mount Everest 16 times, and crisscrossed 14 states, from Georgia’s Springer Mountain to the base of Maine’s Mount Katahdin. During most of the trek, he’d surreptitiously defied local edicts prompted by the coronavirus. He’d occasionally lied or charmed his way out of possible legal binds to arrive, on June 16, at the end of the 100 Mile Wilderness, an isolated expanse of dense woods and arduous climbs that serves as the final gauntlet of loneliness and endurance for northbound thru-hikers. In a final ironic twist, the entire trail had opened the day before—except the last 5.2 miles up Kat.... Continue Reading at Outside Online