2017 April

The Appalachian Trail Club of Florida meeting was held at Sarasota Botanical Gardens on Wednesday, April 20, 2017.

First-timer was Pat from Sarasota who came with Judy.

Linda Franzmann read the minutes of the March meeting.

Grace Tyner said that the newsletter costs about $100/month.

There will be a vote for officers at the next meeting. To date, Linda Franzmann is running for secretary, George Becht is running for V.P., and Dennis Blanchard will continue as Program Manager.

As part of Earth Day, Linda Franzmann will be giving a lecture on wilderness survival on Saturday, April 22 at Crowley Park.

Before introducing the guest speaker, Ken Hamilton, Dennis Blanchard spoke about a Rahawa Haile, the second black woman to hike the AT. You can listen to her On Point exit interview here.

Ken Hamilton planned to hike 140 miles on the AT this spring. He did 40. In his is speech, “Lessons Learned, Silver Lining,” Ken told us that his goal was to test equipment for hiking in weather transitioning from winter to spring. He started at the Cabin in the Woods B & B on March 23, 2017, and was shuttled to Amicalola Falls with a pack weighing twenty-seven pounds. When he suffered a shin injury, Ken continued hiking which exasperated the condition and leading to acute compartment syndrome. As a result, he had to take two weeks without walking.

Lessons learned:

  • Don’t be in a hurry.
  • Assess an injury more readily.
  • The AT is beautiful and the people are fantastic. The weather is changeable, adding to the challenge.
  • Foam pad is not needed to sit on and he preferred the air mattress.
  • He used Nesbitt fuel tablets that made everything in his bag smell like cat pee. Next time he will use alcohol.
  • He had made Moose Goo with peanut butter and honey. It was heavy, crystallized, and ruined his food.
  • The AT is very rocky and without many switchbacks (as compared to the Camino de Santiago). Even so, he will continue to hike in light-weight shoes.

Silver lining: While resting his leg, Ken ended up buying property in North Carolina to use as a base camp for future section hiking and trail magic.

Respectively submitted, Jane V. Blanchard.