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Thru-Hiking Away The Recession

A bum economy and a dearth of jobs drives more hikers to tackle the Appalachian Trail

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If life gets crappy, it’s difficult to stay in a bad mood if you’re on a trail. It’s a credo that serves BACKPACKER readers well, but folks hit hard by the recession are discovering it, too: A crippled economy is driving more and more people to give the Appalachian Trail a shot.

Spending $3,000 of your own money and abandoning the job search might seem like horrible idea right now, but for some, it even turns into a positive career move. Thru-hikers and section hikers alike sometimes find broad networking opportunities through the people they meet on the Appalachian Trail.

Finally, some good press for the Appalachian Trail after a week of titillating scandal. Now, if your significant other learns you’re hiking the AT, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re cheating. You could be looking for a new job.

—Ted Alvarez

On the Appalachian, some hike off the recession (NPR)