In the 1980s, I started hiking with a guy I barely knew. He couldn’t have been more different than me. He was an introverted analyst type and a Tigers fan. I was an extroverted literary type and a Red Sox fan. It was soon apparent that we both shared a passion for hiking though, and that became our bond. We had decided to hike Vermont’s Long Trail, (a 200-plus mile path that runs from the Massachusetts border to Canada) over a series of 3-day weekends. For about 100 miles, the Appalachian Trail and the Long Trail are one and the same. One evening, during our five year journey on the Long Trail, my buddy Wayne paused between spoonfuls of chili to say, “You do realize that we are hiking the Appalachian Trail, don’t you?” 

Jeffrey_H_Ryan
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