Walking North: A Family Hikes The Appalachian Trail. Read a sample chapter, see photos of their 2,100 mile-214 day experience, buy a signed book from author Mic Lowther or on Amazon.
Illustration by Steve Stankiewicz
Photos by Jerrianne Lowther/Mic Lowther
Walking North is a story of discovery, a story of realizations that come slowly, gradually to one who doesn’t even know he is looking for anything.
Mic and Jerrianne Lowther, with 10-year-old daughter, Kyra, start optimistically one first day of spring to walk from Georgia to Maine along the Appalachian Trail. The path is more than 2,000 miles long and follows the very crest of the Appalachian Mountains. All uphill, hikers say, in either direction.
They walk through the usual elements a backpacking adventure brings - snow, rain, wind, cold, heat, swarming bugs. Through bogs, rocks, mud, river crossings, up 400,000 feet of elevation gain and back down, and enough pleasant and easy walking to keep going around the next bend. And from Georgia to Maine, the backdrop is mountain scenery - vivid, spectacular, ever-changing.
Bears, skunks, mice, porcupines, and raccoons invade their camps, along with a colorful assortment of hikers making their way casually, methodically, or obsessively toward Maine.
Differing objectives become evident early on. Jerri has come to see things growing and green, to follow spring north, to walk without hurry through a full change of seasons. Mic counts the miles, plotting each day as a means toward the goal: Maine. And Kyra, well, who knows what she’s thinking….
Walking North is a thoughtful narrative, descriptive at times, touching at times, humorous throughout. It is a story of a family working through the day’s problems, of understanding personal differences, and of slowly discovering one’s place in the natural world.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Reality Is All Uphill
Chapter 2: Of Rain, and Things That Go Chomp in the Night
Chapter 3: If Daisies Won't Tell, Ask a Daffodil
Chapter 4: Descent into Spring
Chapter 5: To Mountain Vistas, Steeply
Chapter 6: Al2
Chapter 7: Town
Chapter 8: The Ten-Year-Old Earns Her Stripes
Chapter 9: Gotta Get to Maine
Chapter 10: Bouquets and Symphonies
Chapter 11: Annie Dillard, Won't You Please Come Home
Chapter 12: What Comes Down, Must Go Up
Chapter 13: Intruder at Sawmill Run
Chapter 14: Downwind, Boy; Downwind
Chapter 15: Visit to Headquarters
Chapter 16: Halfway
Chapter 17: The Moth That Ate Pennsylvania
Chapter 18: Trouble in DWG
Chapter 19: Cold Shower in the Girls' John
Chapter 20: Rainer
Chapter 21: An Appointment Kept
Chapter 22: Stormy Birthday at Bromley
Chapter 23: The Pattern Changes
Chapter 24: The Three Most Perfect Days of Summer
Chapter 25: Mahoosuc Notch: Love It or Leave It
Chapter 26: The Big K
Chapter 27: A Definition
Chapter 28: It All Makes Sense When You Go South
Chapter 29: Note Left in Passing
Chapter 30: View from Saddleback Mountain
Chapter 31: The Man in Red Gaiters
Chapter 32: Crossroad