By Jennifer Pharr Davis

After graduating from university, Jennifer is not definite what she desires to do along with her existence. She is interested in the Appalachian path, a 2175-mile footpath that stretches from Georgia to Maine. although her family and friends imagine she's loopy, she units out by myself to hike the path, hoping it's going to supply her time to consider what she desires to do subsequent. the following 4 months are the main bodily and emotionally tough of her existence. She fast discovers that thru-hiking is tougher than she had imagined: dealing with blisters and aching shoulders from the 30-pound pack she contains; sound asleep at the tough wooden flooring of path shelters; mountaineering via unending torrents of rain or even a snow fall. With each step she takes, Jennifer transitions from an over-confident university graduate to a pupil of the path, braving occasions she by no means imagined sooner than her thru-hike. the path is stuffed with unforeseen kindness, generosity, and humor. And while tragedy moves, she learns that she will depend upon people to aid her in instances of want.

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Additional info for Becoming Odyssa: Epic Adventures on the Appalachian Trail

Sample text

I thought about what the name meant. Maybe I was a wanderer on a long journey back to my home. But then what was I walking away from? And did I really even have a home? After all, I no longer lived with my parents, and I was out of school but without a job. I didn’t even know what the word “home” meant anymore. Maybe that was why I was out here. Maybe I was searching for a home. I shook my head to clear my thoughts. I wasn’t a three-thousand-year-old Homeric character, I was just a girl who wanted to hike the Appalachian Trail.

We watched as the blue rain flap slowly opened, and a red woolen cap emerged. A young woman with dark hair and a pale complexion looked up at us with red eyes and tear-stained cheeks. “I just wanted to see who was here,” she said. And then, as quickly as she had appeared, the red hat disappeared and the rain flap was zipped shut. It wasn’t until I slipped into my own sleeping bag and the night’s darkness overtook the dusk that I heard her muffled whimpers and tearful breathing carried by the wind.

I met Sarah and Doug on March tenth in a gravel parking lot a mile north of Springer Mountain, and after gathering my gear and locking my car, I climbed into their SUV, and together we drove back down the mountain. Unicoi Gap is only fifty trail miles from Springer Mountain, but on the road it took us winding two and a half hours to reach the trailhead. The day so far had been sunny and cool, but at Unicoi Gap, the long afternoon shadows and increased elevation meant freezing temperatures and bitter winds.

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