I just finished a couple of days on the trail - Amicalola to Neels and passed a bunch of hikers - - some termed themselves "thru-hikers" (which is cool). What I simply don't understand is that with all the information available why people continue to hike wearing big heavy boots, heavy army pants, cotton shirts, and carry absurd things like pillows and lap-tops, and buck knives on their belts, and guns (yep - saw one) - - hanging haphazardly off the back of their packs swinging to and fro. Lumpy at Neels told me that they ship 9000 pounds of gear "home" for folks each season. So why, with all the information available are people so darn bent on making their hikes essentially miserable? At least back in the day (before the internet) hikers had to be personally mentored to catch up with the learning curve - - now, I just don't get it. I saw a lot of wet miserable people.