View Full Version : Injury, ailments, handicaps, etc taken along on the thru hike?

Different Socks
11-16-2011, 00:58
Knowing that my left eye may never fully heal so that i may be hiking a trail with both someday, what are some of the things you have seen a hiker/backpacker cope with when it comes to thru hiking the AT? Or any other trail?
What I mean by that is this: When I leave to go on a trail, I have to deal with a strong hearing loss, bad knees, a moderate to strong prescription for my eyes and now I may have to hike with the use of only one eye.
I've seen people with prosthetics or missing an arm, using a cane(s) to help their legs, and even met one thru hiker in Troutdale that was deaf and rarely spoke. Hell, I even met Bill Irwin the year after he thru hiked the trail--and he was blind!! These people are courageous for dealing with and coping with these things.

So what are some of the ailments, handicaps, injuries, or other mental and physical problems have you seen hikers have to deal with in order to just start a hike(or thru hike)AND keep going?

11-16-2011, 01:36
I met "0/0" (blind thruhiker) on the PCT.

He was a tough, driven guy. I believe he's completed the triple crown now.

No exaggeration, he was a stronger, better hiker than many other thrus I met. He had an abscessed tooth nearly explode on him at the top of Mather Pass but still managed to hike himself out.

11-16-2011, 01:36
I'm legally blind. I have a seeing eye dog in the real world and use my trekking poles heavily while I'm hiking. Didn't see the tick that gave me Lymes this year but I'm returning in 2012 to start over and try again.

11-16-2011, 02:04
two blisters. Do I have a shot?

11-16-2011, 08:26
I met and hiked with a gal that was blind and hiking the trail with only her service dog. Her brother hiked with her some, maybe 2 weeks, but the rest she did solo. Az

11-16-2011, 11:13
The deaf hiker I met on the PCT was looking for company through the desert so she wouldn't have another close call with a rattler.

I think the major handicap we all have to deal with is our brains.

11-16-2011, 19:31
An older hiker I know has some hearing loss. He considers it a benefit because he's not bothered by the whine of mosquitoes inches from his face. He can cowboy camp and sleep soundly with a headnet on because he can't hear the bloodsuckers.

11-17-2011, 00:34
I really appreciate your comment.