Clay Pulsipher

I am a contributor for Organized Hiker, and will be thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2019! When I am not in the classroom teaching students how to sing I spend my time outside getting the fresh air and sunshine that I need. I worked for the REI Co-Op for 2 1/2 years.

The Logistics of Hitting Life’s Pause Button to Thru-Hike the A.T.

Logistically speaking, it is not exactly easy to hit the pause button on your regular life to spend four to six months living off the grid, out of a backpack, and in limited contact with the outside world. Frankly, the very concept of taking “four to six months” may prove most difficult for some because it is an open-ended amount of time. That’s just it; it is impossible to predict what will really happen when you set foot on the trail. All you can do is have a sound plan in place and be ready to roll with the punches… and rocks… and weather… and whatever else the trail throws at you.

How I Decided to Take a “Life Sabbatical” to Become a Thru-Hiker

I have told people in my life that I am planning on attempting a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2019. Most people, particularly my family and friends closest to me, reacted positively and excitedly (with some hesitancy at times). But many have been on the other end of the spectrum and expressed utter befuddlement at my desire to spend time in the wilderness, walking a distance that takes most people anywhere between four and six months to complete.