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JillyBarb
09-02-2009, 20:11
My son is a 34 year old, single, thru-hiker who started the AT in April. He saved his money, then quite his job and sold everything he owned to realize his dream. Right now he is in the Whites in N.H. When he completes the AT he will be staying with us until he finds a new position. I've read that life isn't always easy once your hike is done. Any suggestions for me?

Jim Adams
09-02-2009, 20:14
My son is a 34 year old, single, thru-hiker who started the AT in April. He saved his money, then quite his job and sold everything he owned to realize his dream. Right now he is in the Whites in N.H. When he completes the AT he will be staying with us until he finds a new position. I've read that life isn't always easy once your hike is done. Any suggestions for me?

Yes, his life has been changed if nothing more than in his own mind which is where it matters....get ready for a room mate until he finishes his hiking lifestyle...about age 80!:banana

geek

mad4scrapping
09-02-2009, 20:16
I guess he's too old for military school? ;) That's what I use to keep my son in line (of course, he's only 13.)
I think it's great that your son is doing this now. I'm 49 and just starting to think about actually doing the AT. All these years I've lived with it in my backyard . . .

Lone Wolf
09-02-2009, 20:17
My son is a 34 year old, single, thru-hiker who started the AT in April. He saved his money, then quite his job and sold everything he owned to realize his dream. Right now he is in the Whites in N.H. When he completes the AT he will be staying with us until he finds a new position. I've read that life isn't always easy once your hike is done. Any suggestions for me?

give him 2 weeks to get a job. if not, to the curb

Rocket Jones
09-02-2009, 20:32
I gotta agree with LW. Regardless of "how he's changed" or whatever, the reality is that he needs to rejoin society enough to support himself. If needed, provide that loving kick in the butt.

Jim Adams
09-02-2009, 20:41
I gotta agree with LW. Regardless of "how he's changed" or whatever, the reality is that he needs to rejoin society enough to support himself. If needed, provide that loving kick in the butt.
Oh I do agree but I've met quite a few who find ways to keep hiking and return to mom and dad for short periods in between hiking...you know...gets job, $500 / week...lives with mom and dad until back on their feet for 6 weeks....hits another trail with $3 grand...:D


geek

Just a Hiker
09-02-2009, 20:55
He's had 4 or 5 months to think about things in his life, including his future, so he more than likely has some sort of plan in mind already. If not, he'll quickly learn that being broke and living at home at age 34 is a drag and he'll get busy doing something.

Jim Adams
09-02-2009, 21:17
He's had 4 or 5 months to think about things in his life, including his future, so he more than likely has some sort of plan in mind already. If not, he'll quickly learn that being broke and living at home at age 34 is a drag and he'll get busy doing something.

Hiking!:banana:banana:banana:banana


geek

MarkTrail
09-02-2009, 21:22
i'm just adding this to check out my new avatar...

J5man
09-02-2009, 21:46
give him 2 weeks to get a job. if not, to the curb

Don't be such a harda$$ LW. Give him 3!

Spogatz
09-02-2009, 21:49
REI might hire him. They are always looking for people that know a thing or 2 about hiking.

Chaco Taco
09-03-2009, 10:10
REI might hire him. They are always looking for people that know a thing or 2 about hiking.

You would think but Wak and I both applied to the REI here and both put thruhikers on our apps. Wak had worked at EMS as well.

JaxHiker
09-03-2009, 10:17
I'd tell me 34-y-o well done, now get a job. :)

Newb
09-03-2009, 10:32
REI might hire him. They are always looking for people that know a thing or 2 about hiking.

REI doesn't want people to tell the truth about hiking, they want people to sell hiking products. If you put thru hikers in the show room people would find out they don't need most of the crap for sale in there.

Cabin Fever
09-03-2009, 10:37
REI doesn't want people to tell the truth about hiking, they want people to sell hiking products. If you put thru hikers in the show room people would find out they don't need most of the crap for sale in there.

And they don't dare tell someone to go somewhere else to buy something better...

fiddlehead
09-03-2009, 11:24
Suggestions?
Most likely, he learned a lot out there.
I'd take notes and try some of the things yourself: Simplify your life, get up with the sun and go to bed with it too. Less is more. Get rid of things you don't need (in life in general)

He'll probably want to sleep in the back yard for a while.

IF you're lucky, perhaps he'll stick around.
For me, i just started working for the next hiking season. (and the next, and the next and so on)

Get ready for some smelly gear. Big appetite, probably change in his personality and he may be a bit sad for a while.

But you'll probably be pleasantly surprised at some of the changes in him.

Good luck.

Blissful
09-03-2009, 11:55
No multi tasking for at least a week or more...

And don't serve Liptons, oatmeal, mashed potatoes, or stuffing

A-Train
09-03-2009, 11:55
My son is a 34 year old, single, thru-hiker who started the AT in April. He saved his money, then quite his job and sold everything he owned to realize his dream. Right now he is in the Whites in N.H. When he completes the AT he will be staying with us until he finds a new position. I've read that life isn't always easy once your hike is done. Any suggestions for me?

Encourage and motivate him to get moving to something else soon. You won't understand what he;s going through, so being supportive goes a long way.

But from experience, the worst thing you can do is sit around being nostalgic about your trip, for its an easy way to get in a rut and feel sorry for yourself and think that trail life is the best and only way to go.

The quicker he starts a new job, goes back to school, gets involved in a new hobby, volunteers, starts a project, etc. the better.

Monkeyboy
09-03-2009, 13:57
I agree giving him a deadline, but unfortunately in this economy, two weeks may be a bit premature.......

.....even if the job entails "Do you want fries with that?", it may take longer than two weeks.

Red Wolf
09-03-2009, 14:17
:-? He would be more than welcomed at the GATHERING ...in fact, he would be one of this year's class honored at the opening night ceremony for his completion of the A.T. ~ besides, most of the other people there
at the Gathering are just like him, that is, " THRU-HIKERS " ! ! !
more info at : www.aldha.org (http://www.aldha.org)
HAPPY TRAILS !
Red Wolf :clap

High Altitude
09-03-2009, 14:31
REI might hire him. They are always looking for people that know a thing or 2 about hiking.

REI usually doesn't hire people with a lot of backpacking experience. I know several people with a ton of experience and none of them got hired.

ChinMusic
09-03-2009, 14:39
REI doesn't want people to tell the truth about hiking, they want people to sell hiking products. If you put thru hikers in the show room people would find out they don't need most of the crap for sale in there.
That aspect didn't hit me until I chatted with an REI salesman that was a thru. I then realized from the REI perspective that was not a good thing.....too practical.

Crazy Larry #1
09-03-2009, 14:45
My son is a 34 year old, single, thru-hiker who started the AT in April. He saved his money, then quite his job and sold everything he owned to realize his dream. Right now he is in the Whites in N.H. When he completes the AT he will be staying with us until he finds a new position. I've read that life isn't always easy once your hike is done. Any suggestions for me?
All he will want to do after about 5 months is hike, you'll have to take him to Hiker's Anonymous i am afraid........

Chaco Taco
09-03-2009, 15:59
All he will want to do after about 5 months is hike, you'll have to take him to Hiker's Anonymous i am afraid........

When did you thru hike??

Captain
09-03-2009, 16:35
give him 2 weeks to get a job. if not, to the curb


if he was to go after a mcdonalds job or wallmart job i suspect that would be long enough.. but depending on what he does might take a LITTLE longer than that when i was interviewing for a corporate position with a camera specialty store they scheduled me for an interview one week later..then got a call for a second interview TWO weeks later and then a third interview with who would be my boss another half week later and then a mass produced rejection postcard with my name written in " thanking me" for thinking of them as a potential employer but i didnt make the "cut", you know how long it took to get that after the third interview? TWO DAYS.. job hunting in itsself is a fulltime job

Captain
09-03-2009, 16:41
That aspect didn't hit me until I chatted with an REI salesman that was a thru. I then realized from the REI perspective that was not a good thing.....too practical.


right their business is the weekend campers and people who love big names and the "newest gadget" ( i confess im one i was really aching for a MSR REACTOR model versus the pocket rocket..until i got hold of the pocket rocket in person and saw its perfectly capable of the job i wish it to do for much cheaper)college kids and folk who want to " drive" to their campsite...it suits thier needs just fine and i think they have great products..just yes just like any other store they are that.. a STORE that will try to sell sell sell

Captain
09-03-2009, 16:41
right their business is the weekend campers and people who love big names and the "newest gadget" ( i confess im one i was really aching for a MSR REACTOR model versus the pocket rocket..until i got hold of the pocket rocket in person and saw its perfectly capable of the job i wish it to do for much cheaper)college kids and folk who want to " drive" to their campsite...it suits thier needs just fine and i think they have great products..just yes just like any other store they are that.. a STORE that will try to sell sell sell

not exactly sure who i was talking to.........

Bearpaw
09-03-2009, 16:59
REI usually doesn't hire people with a lot of backpacking experience. I know several people with a ton of experience and none of them got hired.

I had already been a Philmont Ranger, Marine Corps Winter Mountain Leader, AT Thru-hiker, and NOLS instructor when I got hired. It just took a couple of applications until my availability matched what they needed.

The real issue for employment is that Walmart and McDonalds pay new hires slightly more than REI. But it's an option at least, and it makes a great part-time job.

superman
09-03-2009, 17:01
I agree giving him a deadline, but unfortunately in this economy, two weeks may be a bit premature.......

.....even if the job entails "Do you want fries with that?", it may take longer than two weeks.

Crap...I'm agreeing with a funny looking monkey.:)

Monkeyboy
09-03-2009, 17:37
Everyone comes around sooner or later..........

Datto
09-05-2009, 19:46
Wow is this a tough crowd here.

If someone would have put a deadline on me right after I finished the AT I would have walked away from them and never come back. Imposing a deadline would be one of the worst things you could do to a thru-hiker who just finished the AT.

Instead, just be very quiet. Think Mellow. No blaring TV with soaps playing. No loud ringing telephones at all (put 'em all on silent ringer -- not a bad idea for full time for that matter).

I'd have cans of Chunky Soup on-hand and lots of lunchmeat and vegetables. Fresh fruit too. And Gatorade if they drink it. And ice cream if they eat it.

Eventually they'll come around and it'll kick in that they'll actually have to rejoin society full-time and will take measures to get going. But if you rush them it's not likely going to be looked upon as a positive thing.

Datto

The Weasel
09-05-2009, 22:46
Datto has it right. You can't kick a person into heaven. But you can help pull someone there.

TW

yaduck9
09-05-2009, 23:35
He's had 4 or 5 months to think about things in his life, including his future, so he more than likely has some sort of plan in mind already. If not, he'll quickly learn that being broke and living at home at age 34 is a drag and he'll get busy doing something.


I think you got it nailed tight.

stranger
09-06-2009, 05:34
I guess it's different for everyone, but I wouldn't assume just because he has spent 6 months thru-hiking that his transition back into society will be challenging.

I've never done a thru-hike of the AT, but I've done 3 multi-month hikes and 2, month long trips, I've never had a problem getting back into the grind, if anything, it's an excuse to get saving for the next trip.

I remember in 2001 I asked my folks if I could move home for 6-8 weeks after my AT hike, I was 26 at the time, and they were very reluctant. I did my hike, I moved home, and I was out 6 weeks later - simple really.

I always recommend to others that they need to think about life after the trail, and set aside some resources for that. People sometimes save up for a thru-hike, have the time of their life, spend all their money, and all of a sudden it's over. It makes sense to plan for life after the trail, because all hikes end and the real world takes over, atleast for a time.

Jonnycat
09-06-2009, 13:11
Ask him to take you dayhiking in a local area, so you can share his turf for awhile.

Chaco Taco
09-07-2009, 11:16
Our transition was pretty good. We used it as time to visit friends and family and get our ducks in a row to move and get jobs. It was cool, got to do an east coast tour down to NC. We also found it was really cheap for us to just go hike down here before we got a place to live.

rambunny
09-09-2009, 15:46
Set the phone ringer on low,try to minimize distractions. Be gentle with him.Get used to a 20 mile stare.And he'll need lots of quiet time&food .Very nice would be to have a few AT books or DVd's around. The best encouragement you can give him is to give back-talk to Scout troops,join a trailmaintenance crew,keep in touch with people he hiked with.Aswah would call me about once a week and ask a question like-what have you got on that you wore on your hike. It helped me stay sane between my 3 thru hikes. Sorry-it could happen again.Congratulations to him!

sbhikes
09-09-2009, 18:20
I can see it taking way longer than 2 weeks to find a good job. The last well-paying job I got it took over 6 months between initial contact and the first day of work.

What do you put on your resume to account for the large gap in employment?

Datto
09-09-2009, 20:57
What do you put on your resume to account for the large gap in employment?

I put this on my resume:

"Thru-hiked the 2167 mile long Appalachian Trail -- Georgia to Maine."

Most of the non-human-resources people were quite interested in my AT thru-hike during the job interview process following my Year 2000 AT thru-hike.

Of the six extended adventures I've taken during the last ten years I've averaged about 120 calendar days between when I started looking for a job and my first day at work at the new job. One of those was a return to the same job while the other five were a switch to a new job.

Datto

ed bell
09-09-2009, 21:07
My son is a 34 year old, single, thru-hiker who started the AT in April. He saved his money, then quite his job and sold everything he owned to realize his dream. Right now he is in the Whites in N.H. When he completes the AT he will be staying with us until he finds a new position. I've read that life isn't always easy once your hike is done. Any suggestions for me?Just a quick question, what is his field of employment?

SunnyWalker
09-10-2009, 21:27
34 years old? Sounds like a grown up "boy" or "son". He'll probably do just fine. Sounds like this is more . . . your problem??!?!?? Suggestion: pack up and join him for the rest of the trail. What a blast you'd have!

sbhikes
09-10-2009, 21:36
Wow. I've been home less than a week. I sent a resume in today and have a job interview already for next week. Maybe that 34 year old guy can get a job after all!

Now I just gotta figure out how to hide my hiker hobble before Tuesday.

Wise Old Owl
09-10-2009, 21:43
give him 2 weeks to get a job. if not, to the curb


Hey once again a well liked postive enforcement of juice from the LW's wisdom bucket.


How does this guy do it?:rolleyes:

Wise Old Owl
09-10-2009, 21:48
REI usually doesn't hire people with a lot of backpacking experience. I know several people with a ton of experience and none of them got hired.

Yep overqualified. Ok I guess I am supposed to say more.... I just agree with the statement.

dreamsoftrails
09-10-2009, 21:53
You would think but Wak and I both applied to the REI here and both put thruhikers on our apps. Wak had worked at EMS as well.
cause they know that thru-hikers know that a majority of their 'gear' is useless and targeted at the frat boy camper

Pips
09-10-2009, 22:07
Honestly, it has taken me a year post-hike to finally put things together (although I only lived at home for about 4 months). It really depends on the person. For me, the trail, as I like to say, "turned my world upside down". When I returned home from the trail my perception had changed, my priorities had changed, and trying to mesh my "trail life" with my "real life" presented an almost crisis. Of course, it is too complicated to really explain... I am just hoping that you are open minded because it is different for everyone. My parents have been very supportive and I have found a way to be a more functional member of society -- even if my primary motivation is acquiring the funds to be able to hike again :0)

sbhikes
09-11-2009, 10:33
Honestly, it has taken me a year post-hike to finally put things together (although I only lived at home for about 4 months). It really depends on the person. For me, the trail, as I like to say, "turned my world upside down". When I returned home from the trail my perception had changed, my priorities had changed, and trying to mesh my "trail life" with my "real life" presented an almost crisis. Of course, it is too complicated to really explain... I am just hoping that you are open minded because it is different for everyone. My parents have been very supportive and I have found a way to be a more functional member of society -- even if my primary motivation is acquiring the funds to be able to hike again :0)

I was like that, too, but that's because when I went home last summer I hadn't finished the trail. I finished it this summer and now I feel done. We'll see how I really feel once a cubicle is staring me in the face, though. I might run for my life! :eek:

Trailbender
09-11-2009, 10:35
I would rather be broke my whole life, and hike regularly, having long adventures, than work at a factory, and in dying say "i wish I had lived a more adventurous life". Work and money are overrated.

Blue Jay
09-11-2009, 13:04
I was like that, too, but that's because when I went home last summer I hadn't finished the trail. I finished it this summer and now I feel done. We'll see how I really feel once a cubicle is staring me in the face, though. I might run for my life! :eek:

It might be better to just commit a crime and get a jail cell. At least there they feed you. Run now.

SunnyWalker
09-12-2009, 22:52
sbhikes: So what is your "hiker hobble"??

sbhikes
09-13-2009, 00:01
I limp on both legs.