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Re: [at-l] thru-hikering attitude

Sly, I appreciate your honesty and the good intentions of both you and
WF in not only writing a journal, but simultaneously publishing it on
the web. I think that it was a good intentioned idea gone wrong.

A journal _should_ contain warts and all, the pain and the prize. It is
rarely something of any benefit to anyone other than the writer, at
least for a few years. Keeping a journal is a great deal of work, and
not something to be started during something as big as a thru-hike. If a
journal is to kept for a thru-hike, it is probably a good idea to keep
it for about 6 months before the hike. Something like training. If
keeping a journal is too much work in town, it will be too much work on
the trail.

Publishing a journal is a whole other item. If you are writing a journal
for an audience, you will edit and restrain your writing to some extent.
If you are writing for yourself, you tend to write from an entirely
different perspective. One journal is very true, the other is
"historical fiction."

How people settle down for the day, and how they organize their days are
very different. A thru-hike is a very selfish act, and one of those rare
Exodus' that a number of people still share. (Selfish does not equal
bad.) I admit to a significant amount of vicarious (voyeuristic?)
interest and pleasure in reading the on line journals. These are helpful
to us wannabe's and hopefuls. Yet, a journal is another part of the
"hike your own hike" credo. Like the hike, the journal and the reasons
for the journal are intensely personal. 

I would like to ask the question of journal publishers - Did you write
<comments, please do not publish..... end comments> in journals for

Atlanta, GA

Slyinmd@aol.com wrote:
> I just happened to discover the AT and thru-hiking and never thought about a
> journal, I never kept one in my life, why would I start.  During my planning
> stages I found Trailplace still in construction.  Wingfoot had an idea of
> sponsoring '97 journals for the 50th anniversary of the AT.  I thought it was
> a great idea to keep my sister, nieces and friends informed of my progress.  I
> contacted WF and agreed to do an online journal.   But shortly after my start
> (300 miles) something happened, writing was taking too much time from my trail
> experience and I happened to be in constant pain, writing about it wasn't
> going to solve my problem and I didn't want to bore the masses or worry my
> family.  I had to get my head on straight and that was by living the trail,
> not writing about it for prosperity.  My memories serve me well.....

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