Following her passion
Laurie Potteiger came to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy to help them out prior to her attempted thru-hike in the 1980s. When her hike was over, Laurie returned to the ATC and found her passion–twice. She not only started a career there, she also found her husband! Laurie's quiet intelligence shines through in this conversation, with her extensive knowledge of the trail and its protocols informing her answers.
While bear canisters are often required out west, Laurie is eager to see them more often on the Appalachian Trail. As you can see from the picture below of Laurie in the 100 Mile Wilderness, they can take a lot of stuff!
Laurie is a great proponent of the various initiatives in the ATC and, as you'd imagine, has plenty of information for the interested listener. If you like the idea of doing a Flip Flop of the AT, try the AT Flip Floppers Facebook page. There is plenty of support for prospective hikers who want to help in this effort to maintain the trail for future generations.
If you feel that a Flip Flop isn't for you, why not take part in the A.T. 14 State Challenge. Here, you'll find ideas about accessibility and suggested destinations that you can get to take on the challenge. I think that this is a wonderful idea that will bring the Appalachian Trail to Americans who might not otherwise get the chance to touch this magical piece of real estate.
Laurie has also sent me a link to the AT Expert Advice Facebook page. Here, you'll get "advice that's good for you and good for the Trail." On the subject of what's good for the Trail, why not visit this link, which gives you tips and videos on the Leave No Trace policy. There's also the AT Camp, which is voluntary registration designed to help manage and record which hikers are leaving when. This is a great device to allow you to plan your journey and choose how many people you want to be around in those early days.
If you're ever in the mood for a bit of trail maintaining, Laurie and her husband step up for that as well.
The last two links are her Instagram and Twitter pages.
Our other guest this week is Keith Myrmel. Keith is a mapmaker and he describes his painstaking process by talking about the Superior Hiking Trail. It was tough to get high-enough-definition pictures to show you, but these two sections are pretty good.
One last thing about Laurie Potteiger. Not only did she meet her husband through hiking, they also spent their anniversary in Shenandoah at Stony Man Mountain.
Don't forget to check out my "Merch" store, where you can buy Mighty Blue shirts, mugs, and even phone cases. The link directly to the store is https://www.teepublic.com/stores/mighty-blue-merch?ref_id=5927.
Lastly, we hope that you continue to follow Bruce as he is in the early days in Georgia, at http://returningtokatahdin.libsyn.com
While you're there, hop on over to our sponsor's site, https://www.trailtopia.com.