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Warren Doyle's trail eating habits
Frank Logue has confirmed already what many of us were aware of.. namely that
Warren Doyle subsisted on Snickers for one of his AT thruhikes. I can vouch
that 2-4 years ago (they all run together anymore) Warren was eating the
cheapest chocolate chip cookies he could find as his day food for a
'van-supported' thruhike. Another year he to Goodwill and bought several p
airs of very cheap tennis shoes for his hike. It mattered little to him that
they were too large. Another year he called me from the trail at Wesser in
February to come pick him up for the evening (Wesser is 30 miles from my home)..
He had bought some 'cheap' (do we begin to detect a pattern here?) all rubber
boots from Kmart. After walking 41 miles into Winding Stair Gap (NC) and
getting there at 10:30 the night before to get to his cache of candy bars, he
had walked the 27 miles into Wesser by mid-afternoon. "His feet were bothering
him somewhat", he said.
When we arrived home, I called one of my 2000-miler friends who is a physician
to come over to meet Warren. I wanted him to take a look at Warren's feet
for after I took one look at the macerated condition of those god-awful
appendages that pass for feet on Warren, I was afraid gangrene might set in.
Doc suggested that Warren might want to rest his feet for a day and get some
boots that weren't too big and could breathe a little. His feet reminded me
of pickled pigs' feet.
Warren said he had alotted only x # of days to get from Springer to Roan
Mountain and he thought he should go on. He did, but he called me from Fontana
Dam to say that he was giving it up that he had thought of something he had
forgotten he had to do at home and was cutting his hike short. Never did he
admit that it was his feet that caused him to go home early. And maybe it
Anyway, I just wanted to say that what ever you hear about Warren's exploits,
its probably true. While I acknowledge Warren's tenacity and endurance, my
advice is don't try to buy gear, eat, or hike like Warren. I am reminded of an
entry in the trail register at The Place in Damascus in the early to
mid-eighties by Warren. He had just done his then famous 'Damascus By Dawn'
hike from Mt. Rogers Visitor Center south to Damascus. He started at dawn one
day and the goal was to reach Damascus by dawn of the next. That one he did in
22.5 hours. He said he only had a half a loaf of bread and 1.5 quarts of
water. for the 66 miles. My entry following his was: "Where were the fishes?".
I even had a "t"-shirt made up by an airbrush artist in Gatlinburg that had a
scene that could have been Grayson Highlands as a background with evergreen
trees and large boulders in a vast meadow. In a trail marked by vibram sole
prints was a cariciture of me, on my stomach and a boot print on my back,
looking down the trail toward aboot vanishing in that direction. The words in
the dialog balloon coming from my mouth, " Warren who?". I presented that
Tshirt to him at the Gathering that year and he proudly wore it the whole
Enough, enough! John Newman