May 21, 2022

Episode #125 - Kate Stillwell (Phoenix)

Episode #125 - Kate Stillwell (Phoenix)

Jester chats with a familiar voice to the Hiking Radio Network, Kate Stillwell or Phoenix. Kate joins Jester's Class of 2022 Section Hikers with the hopes of LASHing her way on the AT South to Springer Mountain.

Kate Stillwell, also known as Phoenix, joins Jester's Class of 2022 Section Hikers this week. Kate has been attempting to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail since 2017 but due to injury, covid, and life responsibilities at home, she is now focused on completing the trail as a LASHer. As you will hear, Kate is mentally focused and ready to hit the trail in early May! Be sure to follow Kate on her social media sites to support and encourage her along the way!

Thanks for Listening and Happy Section Hiking!

Jester's Class of 2022 Section Hikers - Playlist:

Connect with Kate Stillwell (Phoenix):
Facebook Group:



Connect with Julie "Jester" Gayheart:


Gear Lists & More:

Music for the Podcast provided by:
The Okee Dokee Brothers - "Through The Woods"

Kate StillwellProfile Photo

Kate Stillwell


PHOENIX here. I Started as a SOBO thru hiker in Katahdin Maine on June 8, 2017 with my daughter Alexa (AKA Tinkerbell AKA Tink). She finished on October 31, 2017 but my hike was plagued by mishaps and injury. So that hike ended after 100+ miles (Katahdin and 💯 mile wilderness. I tried to meet up with Tink later in Vermud but THAT idea was ixnayed when I broke my arm going down a rock scramble after Killington. Yeah so 2017 was NOT my year.

Fast forward to 2020 I was to thru hike SOBO FLIP FLOP from HF to Springer then bounce to Monson to HF BUT w COVID I decided to hike NOBO FLIP FLOP so I could be closer to home (Annapolis MD) as I hiked MD, PA and points north. I started that hike May 8, 2020 after delaying it for a month bc of COVID. I suffered a severe sprain 150 miles in (in PA) but continued for another 350 miles completing MD, PA, NJ, NY, and CT for 500 miles before the ankle became dangerously compromised.

Moving on I decided to return to the trail in early Spring 2021 as a LASHER as I cld not imagine rehiking the 600+ miles already hiked. My hope was to complete HF to Springer. I set out April 8, 2021 and had a cold but fabulous hike until May 1, 2021 when I injured (turns out I dislocated) the same previously injured ankle. So I returned home after completing 280 miles. So at this point I’m about 900 miles done.

I am taking a train back to Roanoke on May 1, 2022 and returning to my 2021 exit point (Mills Gap) on May 2 which just happens to be my younger son’s 30th birthday. Wish me a “lack of bad luck”!!!