PODCAST

Mighty Blue On The Appalachian Trail: The Ultimate Mid-Life Crisis

Steve Adams

This show is about what it was like to hike the AT in 2014 as a fat 61-year-old with zero hiking experience. Guests join me to share their stories and insights all the way from Georgia to Maine. At the end of each episode is a chapter from the latest hiking book that I'm reading.

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Episode #328 - Kayla and Ken Bold (Nugs and Kenbo)
6d ago
Episode #328 - Kayla and Ken Bold (Nugs and Kenbo)
Father and daughter hiking partners, Kayla and Ken Bold, came to the Appalachian Trail with Ken originally intending to hike just a section in support of his daughter. As often happens, those plans changed, and they headed north together as a team. Each learned something about the other, with their familial bond strengthened along the way. You can follow Nugs on Instagram at Our two catch-ups this week are with Trumpet and his dog FrankE, as well as with Katie Westling, who is filling in the miles she missed in her thru-hike attempt last year. I mentioned our other shows on the podcast today, so here are the links you'll need to find each of them going forward. Mighty Blue: Trail Dames: Jester Section Hiker: Hiking Unfiltered: Returning to Katahdin: JR Hikes the Appalachian Trail: Dixie LIVE on the Continental Dive Trail: If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #328 - Kayla and Ken Bold (Nugs and Kenbo)
6d ago
Episode #328 - Kayla and Ken Bold (Nugs and Kenbo)
Father and daughter hiking partners, Kayla and Ken Bold, came to the Appalachian Trail with Ken originally intending to hike just a section in support of his daughter. As often happens, those plans changed, and they headed north together as a team. Each learned something about the other, with their familial bond strengthened along the way. You can follow Nugs on Instagram at Our two catch-ups this week are with Trumpet and his dog FrankE, as well as with Katie Westling, who is filling in the miles she missed in her thru-hike attempt last year. I mentioned our other shows on the podcast today, so here are the links you'll need to find each of them going forward. Mighty Blue: Trail Dames: Jester Section Hiker: Hiking Unfiltered: Returning to Katahdin: JR Hikes the Appalachian Trail: Dixie LIVE on the Continental Dive Trail: If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #327 - Jeff Hayes (Speedo)
Jun 16 2022
Episode #327 - Jeff Hayes (Speedo)
This week, we have a first for the podcast. Initially, our principal guest, Jeff Hays, lays out his views on why the Southern Terminus of the Appalachian Trail should move to Alabama. As Jeff says, "Why not Alabama?" Then, Jeff and Nathan Wright debate the issue as they see it. They keep it respectful and agree far more than they disagree. At the end, I weigh in with my opinion. I hope you all learn something from this discussion. You can learn more about the issues at stake by visiting Jeff's site, where he promotes building an entirely new trail. It is at Jeff also offers the following site, which argues for using existing trails. That is at You can find Jeff's hostel at and on Facebook at In between Jeff's chat with me and the subsequent debate, I caught up with Katie Westling, as she has now returned to the AT to continue her quest to complete her thru-hike. If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #326 - Ian and Eve Alderman (Our Spectrum Adventures)
Jun 9 2022
Episode #326 - Ian and Eve Alderman (Our Spectrum Adventures)
Today, we have Ian Alderman on the show. Ian and his daughter, Eve, are hiking the entire length of Britain. While it isn't a super long hike, it is still over a thousand miles and there is very little in the way of a defined path. The West Highland Way WAS a path that made it a little easier for them and that's where I found them. What's remarkable about these two, though, is that both Ian and his daughter are autistic. Ian and his wife Sarah have determined that they don't intend for Eve to be handicapped by autism, so they are giving her an adventure that, in itself, is spawning other ideas for further adventures. You can check out their Facebook page at If you'd like to offer some support, you can do so here.                 Dom Tamarro has taken a few days off the trail to return home for a graduation, yet he's now past 500 miles and loving it. By the time you listen to today's show, he'll be back at it. If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #325 - Dennis Pack (Bookworm)
Jun 2 2022
Episode #325 - Dennis Pack (Bookworm)
Dennis Pack is nearer my generation of hikers, and this week he shares the story of his 2021 flip flop. He's a great believer in serendipity and enjoyed the way in which things just "happen" out there on the trail. He has a well-grounded, gentle wisdom, some of which he learned on the trail, though much of it he clearly accumulated over his 60 years. His cousin had been diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia and, not knowing much about this, he learned what he could and shared it on the trail. If you'd like to read Dennis's journal, you can find it at You can also follow him on Facebook at If you'd like to learn more about Lewy Body Dementia, check out these two links: and Our Mighty Blue Class of 2022 is thinning out fairly rapidly, and this week, we hear the diverging fortunes of Sarah Landis and Brittaney Allvord. If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #324 - Natisha Webb (Calypso)
May 26 2022
Episode #324 - Natisha Webb (Calypso)
Natisha Webb wrote to me recently about my West Highland Way trip, telling me she'd already booked to go on the same hike next year. We corresponded, and it turns out that she also thru-hiked the AT in 2021, having been "Covided" off in 2020. Naturally, I wanted her to tell her story, and she agreed to come on the show. As you'll hear, she is a pragmatic woman, making sensible decisions when decisions are required. If you'd like to learn more about Natisha and her hiking, and van, life, check out her Instagram at Additionally, you can check out at her YouTube page at We caught up with two of our Class of 2022 this week, neither of whom is actually on the trail right now! Katie Westling, who we followed in 2021, is heading back to the Appalachian Trail in early June to complete the last 500 or so miles of her hike. She tells us her plans. If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #323 - Nathan and Kimm Wright (Switchback and Crewhiker)
May 19 2022
Episode #323 - Nathan and Kimm Wright (Switchback and Crewhiker)
Today, we have Nathan and Kimm Wright, from the Pinhoti Outdoor Center. I met them both at Trail Days this past weekend, and we got into a discussion on the benefits–or otherwise–of relocating the Southern Terminus of the Appalachian Trail to Alabama, using the Pinhoti Trail to effect that change. This is a controversial subject that Nathan and Kimm are well-versed in. Indeed, Nimblewill Nomad, who was with the two of them at Trail Days, got particularly het up over the subject. We'll let you decide. Listen to the two of them, then read the article below by Nimblewill, and, if you're convinced, why not sign their petition on change.org? They also talked about the Pinhoti Trail "Kick Off," later in the year. You can check that out at Some of the surviving members of the Mighty Blue Class of 2022 report in, with Dom Tammaro and Dan Whitesides giving their progress reports. From an old friend of the show, JC Van Etten, or Catmando, I got a call yesterday morning and he sent me some spectacular pictures ofrom the summit of Mt Whitney. It was great to hear from me, as well as a reminder that I'll be pushing for Whitney later this year.    Finally, the rest of the first chapter of George Steffanos's "Then the Hail Came." If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #322 - Chris Veasey (Idaho Bones)
May 12 2022
Episode #322 - Chris Veasey (Idaho Bones)
Our guest today is from the AT Class of 2017. His name is Chris Veasey, and we share an open chat about his experiences on the trail. He flip-flopped, heading north from Harpers Ferry to Katahdin, then south to Springer. His northern section was spent with a tramily, while he was largely solo in the south. We discuss the differences between both sections. Chris has written a book about his adventures and has put up a Kickstarter for those who would like to support his efforts to publish his book. You can support that here. He can also be found on social media at and We catch up with some of the surviving members of our Mighty Blue Class of 2022, with Sarah Landis loving her time on the trail. Kera, Ryan, and Brittaney–while definitely loving the trail–have experienced both the highs and lows of trail life. Finally, I'm reading the first part of George Steffanos's book, "Then The Hail Came." If you'd like to find out more about "Then The Hail Came," check out George's website at You can also find George's book on Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #321 - Brian Anderson (The Tick Terminator)
May 5 2022
Episode #321 - Brian Anderson (The Tick Terminator)
This week, we have the aptly named Tick Terminator, otherwise known as Brian Anderson. Brian has had a fascination with ticks–and how to terminate them–for over ten years. He has advised companies on how to deal with their outdoor employees, suggesting best practice to keep them from contracting Lyme and other diseases. Today, he's offering advice to hikers and backpackers. He does this in a fun, informative way, and I think we hit all the important points. If you'd like to learn more, Brian's website is while he can be found on Facebook at We caught up with another two of our Mighty Blue Class of 22. This time, Dom Tammaro tells us of his rattle snake encounter AND his new trail name, while Joanne Birditt has eventually called a halt to her hike. Her smiling face on the show told me that it was the right decision. Finally today, we have the Prologue of our new book. This was formerly a blog post, and I recently received permission to read it from George Steffanos, the writer. You can read more about George and his book at his website at as well as buy his book from Amazon at this link. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #320 - Mighty Blue on the West Highland Way
Apr 28 2022
Episode #320 - Mighty Blue on the West Highland Way
This week's show is all about my recent "saunter" on the West Highland Way in Scotland. As many of you know, I'd never hiked before I moved to the US, and I certainly didn't know about this little gem in Scotland. I'd originally intended to couple a quicker hike on the WHW with a similarly fast walk on Hadrian's Wall Path. However, as you'll hear, fate intervened, and I had one of my most satisfying hikes. I've also added a lot more pictures this week (corresponding with the day they were taken), because I didn't share many of them on Facebook or Instagram. For those of you who are interested, my itinerary was as follows: Day 1 - from Milngavie (Mile Zero) to Drymen Camping (Mile 11.0), an 11 mile day Day 2 - from Drymen Camping (Mile 11.0) to Balmaha (Mile 19.2), an 8.2 mile day Day 3 - from Balmaha (Mile 19.2) to Rowardennan (Mile 27.6), an 8.4 mile day Day 4 - from Rowardennan (Mile 27.6) to Inverarnan (Mile 41.5), a 13.9 mile day Day 5 - from Inverarnan (Mile 41.5) to Tyndrum (Mile 53.3), an 11.8 mile day Day 6 - from Tyndrum (Mile 53.3) to The Bridge of Orchy (Mile 60.3), a 7 mile day Day 7 - from The Bridge of Orchy (Mile 60.3) to Glencoe "Pods" (Mile 72.4), a 12.1 mile day Day 8 - from Glencoe "Pods" (Mile 72.4) to Kinlochleven (Mile 81.3), an 8.9 mile day Day 9 - from Kinlochleven (Mile 81.3) to Fort William (Mile 96.8), a 15.5 mile day. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #315 - J. Robert Harris (JR)
Mar 24 2022
Episode #315 - J. Robert Harris (JR)
We have a wonderful story on the show today. J Robert Harris grew up in New York during the 1960s. His folks realized that the New York streets were no place for a young black man. JR was sent to the Catskills to join the Boy Scouts. The lessons he learned, and the things he saw gave him a new purpose in life to pursue knowledge and peace in the outdoors. Following a caribou migration, or turning up at an Inuit settlement, JR's natural curiosity has led him to many of the paths less travelled and he shares his wisdom and experience with Steve. His book, Way Out There: Adventures of a Wilderness Trekker, explores these themes. You can get it on Amazon. You can also follow JR on Facebook at on Instagram at or on his website at We also caught up with Dom Tamarro, an unabashedly excited man who is soooo ready for his upcoming hike!! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #313 - Hope Westall (Everest)
Mar 10 2022
Episode #313 - Hope Westall (Everest)
Hope Westall is today's guest. Hope is the owner of Alt Route Meals, yet it is her hiking and her traveling that made me want to interview her on the show. But the meals are now a part of Hope's life, with a desire to mix her adventures with nutritionous, plant-based food that allows her to hike stronger and healthier. She has done the AT and PCT, several trails in Australia and New Zealand, as well as a summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. Her hunger for these adventures pushed her into developing her own food and, finding the results suiting her, she expanded into a business. You can learn more about Hope and her products at  as well as on Facebook at  and on Instagram at Barry Hill and Dave Burge, from our Mighty Blue Class of 2022, give their last updates until I return in mid-April. Each has a cautionary tale to tell!! If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #311 - Lee Brackman (General Lee)
Feb 24 2022
Episode #311 - Lee Brackman (General Lee)
I have a wonderful reunion this week, with Lee Brackman, General Lee, from my Class of 2019. Lee and I ran into each other in Virginia and hiked around each other for a few days. Despite that brief time, we felt like firm friends, our nearly 50 year age difference notwithstanding. It was great to catch up. Lee is a pretty remarkable young man, having packed an awful lot of stuff into his 24 years, including both his long hikes, mission work in a Cholera Hospital, and Cancer Research at Vanderbilt. More recently, Lee hiked the CDT and started a new company, with a friend from Vanderbilt, producing clean water with electrolytes. Check it out at Purlyte.com. If you want to learn more, or even reconnect with him after your own hiking adventure, Lee is happy to share his email address. You can reach him at lcb21977@uga.edu We catch up with two of our Class of 2022 members. Joanne Birditt tells me that she is bringing forward her thru-hike a few weeks, while Sarah Sunshine Landis is going in the opposite direction, putting hers back a couple of weeks. None of this will matter when the two of them get out on the trail; it's always going to be there! Finally today, stick around and listen to the Ballad of Mighty Blue, written for me by Andy Alexander. I close out the show with it today, and am grateful indeed that our show has meant so much to people that they want to support in this way. I'm humbled. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #310 - Kelly Hays (9 Lives)
Feb 17 2022
Episode #310 - Kelly Hays (9 Lives)
This week, another intrepid young woman shares her story with us. Kelly Hays, who has developed quite a following on YouTube, hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2021, yet hers was no ordinary hike. Emergency surgery for most people would take them off the trail for more than just a few weeks, yet Kelly was so desperate to get back with her trail family that she returned just three weeks after the surgery. Hear how she coped with this setback and how she experienced the trail in all its glory. Previous thru-hiker and guest, Stephanie "Sunshine" Lorenze even crowned at the end! You can catch up with Kelly at some of the following links YouTube: Instagram: TikTok: Patreon: Dom Tammaro mentioned last week how he'll be carrying a bear canister, and I expressed an interest to see how he stows it on his pack. Looks good, Dom. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.
Episode #309 - Grant Breidenbach (Detour)
Feb 10 2022
Episode #309 - Grant Breidenbach (Detour)
Grant Breidenbach is our guest this week. Grant hiked the John Muir Trail in 2021, his longest backpacking trip to date. But, as you'll hear, his preparation and knowledge base is impressive from many perspectives. He is a consummate planner who considers the many factors that go into completing a long-distance hike. He also has some insights into the weather patterns in the Sierras that culminated in a huge storm on his second day. His telling of that story is riveting. Finally, Grant makes the case for bear canisters as a method of food storage to help protect bears. Grant suggests the following two Facebook sites as valuable resources for the JMT If you'd like to learn more about Grant's preparations for the trail, and his attention to detail, check out his excellent website, at There, you'll see his pack breakdown, his food details, and his itinerary, along with a link to his Instagram account. Also today, Dave Burge and Chuck Hayes–our first two Class of 2022 members–talk to me about their progress in the cold, early days of the year. If you like what we're doing on the Hiking Radio Network, and want to see our shows continue, please consider supporting us with either a one-off or monthly donation. You'll find the donate button on each Hiking Radio Network page at If you prefer NOT to use PayPal, you can now support us via check by mailing it to Mighty Blue Publishing, PO Box 6161, Sun City Center, FL 35751. Any support is gratefully received. If you'd like to take advantage of my book offer (all three of my printed hiking books–with a personal message and signed by me–for $31, including postage to the United States) send a check payable to Mighty Blue Publishing at the address just above.