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[at-l] Re:(no subject)

I used Wingfoot's book in '97.  Other thru hikers who were carrying 
different guides constantly asked to look at my book, because it was 
outstanding for the info given about road crossings and how far either way 
to a town or resupply point, the acceptability of dogs at hostels and 
motels, etc.  I especially appreciated having the mileage figures into towns 
because I rarely tried to hitch since I had a large black lab with me.  I 
planned my town stops and resupplies this way so that I wouldn't have to 
walk more than half a mile if possible.  Also, the book was written in an 
informative, newsy way, giving little tidbits of info that turned out to be 
very helpful, especially about water sources.  Having constant feedback from 
other hikers, he incorporated the latest info into the guide, and since it 
mostly came from hikers it was info that we could readily use and 
appreciate.  This was in '97 and maybe the quality has deteriorated since 
then while the quality of the Companion has grown exponentially.  All I can 
say is that Dan Bruce's guide was an important part of my planning and day 
to day hiking.

Adding to this, I doubt if anyone gave me any more support, encouragement 
and downright good advice while I was planning my hike.  Most of the listers 
on the ATML were encouraging and supportive, but from the first time I wrote 
Wingfoot and asked him a question he gave me advice and inspiration.   His 
guide was one of the first things I bought when I was getting started in 
backpacking, even before I had hopes of trying a thru hike.  So no matter 
how he changed over the years I will always feel gratitude for his help and 
friendship.  You may not agree, and you may not ever have personally been 
touched by his kindness, but don't try to denigrate the experience for those 
of us who have.