booksBack to books
GSMNP: walking with spring
WALKING WITH SPRING--The story that inspired thouands of Appalachian Trail Thru-Hikers, by Earl V. Shaffer. It was spring of 1948, and a young man from Pennsylvania had to work out of his psyche the sights, sounds, and losses of World War II, so he took a hike. For four months. On August 5 of that year, Earl Victor Shaffer became the first person to solo-hike uninterrupted the entire length of the Appalachian Trail, from Springer Mountain in Georgia through 13 other states to Katahdin in the central-Maine wilderness...on more than 2,000 miles of footpath created in the 1920s and '30s by volunteers and maintained by volunteers ever since. Earl Shaffer, a woodsman, naturalist, and poet who still lives close to the Trail, went on to become one of those volunteers as a leader of the Appalachian Trail Conference as it worked to secure federal protection for 'the A.T.,' now a unit of the national park system but still volunteer-managed. Written soon after the first of his two thru-hikes and including photographs from 1948, Walking with Spring chronicles Shaffer's adventures along a path that at the time was showing neglect of the war years and has since been rerouted significantly to its permanent locations. His simply stated story has served as an inspiration for more than 3,000 men and women who have since followed in his footsteps...and many thousands more who have tried. Or wanted to. Softcover, 160 pages.