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  1. #81
    double d's Avatar
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    A purist is someone who labels themselves that-why not take a hatchet with you, the way Ed Schaffer did when he first hiked the AT? As someone wrote earlier, I agree with them:
    "Don't let others force you to follow their meaningless rules.

    Is walking past every single blaze really important to you, or is it the whole journey? Come on. Is it about them or about you? It's about YOU and that's what matters."
    "I told my Ma's and Pa's I was coming to them mountains and they acted as if they was gutshot. Ma, I sez's, them mountains is the marrow of the world and by God, I was right". Del Gue

  2. #82
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rift Zone View Post
    I'll go ahead and claim the most advanced and successful long distance hikers know there is no right, wrong, or better answer to this one. It is a personal thing that is best served highly customized. So what's your custom? How do you approach that?

    I'm almost kind of ashamed to admit I'm a purist. I'm looking at bypassing cool stuff because the mark in the tree had the wrong color? -that's a rough one for me to reconcile. However, hiking the AT to katahdin is the plan, and I tend to be real loyal to plans I adopt... no technicalities, if I'm gonna claim I hiked the entire thing, I will have. So that's how I end up a purist... I will follow the white blazes. Having said that, I have a get out of that free card in some places... I've hiked a third of the AT already. In those places, over ground I've already covered, taking blueblaze parallel routes to cool places is fair game. I will pretty much do so every time the grass is greener.

    How about you?
    If it is an FKT (a record) then covering every inch is mandatory.

    Otherwise you aught to simply do what you said you did.
    At the end of the day unless you take along a third party witness... it's just your word and if you can live with lying to yerself why should I care?

    If you say you hiked THE Appalachian Trail... then technically you aught to be a purist about it... or at least close enough you're comfortable with your definition as the footpath is fairly technically defined and easy to stay on.

    If you say you hiked along the AT... then I'm sure you had a swell time and didn't worry too terribly much about exactly which inch of pathway you covered as you went along. You still went on a 2000+ mile hike and really had just as many, if not even possibly more, positive experiences as a purist.

    If you say you had an adventure from Georgia to Maine... sweet. Bumming around, doing some hiking, catching a concert, hitchhiking, bar hopping, hooking up with strangers, and overall having a grand adventure of it... God Bless 'Merica cause that sounds like a wonderful trip. Using the trail as a jumping off point for a wild season of fun sounds pretty amazing... especially as many find the 'colorful characters' who make up the trail community so interesting.

    I understand a purist getting butthurt over a poser or flat out yellowblazer claiming to have Thru-Hiked THE Appalacian Trail. But more often than not they simply don't understand the meaning of the claim and are not worth yer time.
    What is going to happen? After months of hanging out on the trail and walking enough to know better you're going to suddenly break through their thick skull and implant your definition into their heart and mind? They will collapse in shame, shed tears and fall to their knees begging for forgiveness? Nah... they'll just think you're a real a-hole and get on with their lives.

    Be proud of what you say you did regardless of what you did.
    If you're ashamed of it... guess you're more of purist than you think.
    Despite claims to the contrary; You cannot lie on the trail.
    Last edited by Just Bill; 12-27-2018 at 14:40.

  3. #83

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    It's quite possible to thru hike the AT and yet not hike it's entireity
    Follow slogoen on Instagram.

  4. #84
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    It's quite possible to thru hike the AT and yet not hike it's entireity
    "Used to be so wilfully obtuse, or is the word abstruse?
    Semantics like a noose, get out your dictionaries"

    'Are you Serious', Andrew Bird

  5. #85
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    It's quite possible to thru hike the AT and yet not hike it's entireity
    Not sure I get that one. Unless... maybe that's the point! The whole discussion is pointless because it's impossible to be one with the universe. Or as Tony says, "do your best, and forget the rest."

  6. #86
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    A few years ago there was a hurricane in New England that hit the AT in VT and NH very hard during thru hiker season. The AT was officially closed from the Mass VT state line to the northern border of the whites. There was no official blue blaze route. The ATC declared that that year this section could be skipped and still be considered a thru hike. It was that way for several weeks.

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    nobody really cares about your little walk in the woods

  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    A few years ago there was a hurricane in New England that hit the AT in VT and NH very hard during thru hiker season. The AT was officially closed from the Mass VT state line to the northern border of the whites. There was no official blue blaze route. The ATC declared that that year this section could be skipped and still be considered a thru hike. It was that way for several weeks.
    Thanks for the point.

  9. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    nobody really cares about your little walk in the woods


    unless all the blazes are licked---then everyone cares....

  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Just Bill View Post
    ...If you say you had an adventure from Georgia to Maine... sweet. Bumming around, doing some hiking, catching a concert, hitchhiking, bar hopping, hooking up with strangers, and overall having a grand adventure of it... God Bless 'Merica cause that sounds like a wonderful trip. Using the trail as a jumping off point for a wild season of fun sounds pretty amazing... especially as many find the 'colorful characters' who make up the trail community so interesting...
    This describes the way many including myself thru hike/LD hike. One can experience all this, and more, and still meet the ATC's definition of hiking the entirety of the AT. I did. And, it wasn't a problem. I can live with myself.


    LD hiking/thru hiking is not just about hiking.

  11. #91
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    Next time the $379 truck payment is due to the finance company I'm going to send in $300. When they add in a late fee or send a letter stating the entire payment hasn't been remitted as I signed my name agreeing to in a contract to receive the financing benefit I'm going to say "stop being a purist, why are you so legalistic?, I didn't know we were following the letter of the contract."

  12. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdoczi View Post
    ...the truth is someone who has never even set foot on the east coast of the united states can get one of those certificates, and i'm sure someone has. as such, i really never get why anyone worries about meeting the "requirements" to get one.
    Some sc%$mbags beat up Seniors for their SS checks too. That doesn't justify me doing it.

  13. #93
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    In these threads I find it alarming how quick and to what extent some will sacrifice their honesty and integrity...for what...perceived benefits of social clout, a fictitiously obtained certificate of accomplishment.

  14. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    In these threads I find it alarming how quick and to what extent some will sacrifice their honesty and integrity...for what...perceived benefits of social clout, a fictitiously obtained certificate of accomplishment.
    Not anyone on this overly long thread has said anything about sacrificing their own honesty and integrity, rather only that you have no right to say exactly what that is.

    And your payment analogy is far and away irrelevant and meaningless to what’s been discussed.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
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  15. #95

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    nobody really cares about your little walk in the woods
    So true.
    Means nothing to hikers...dime a dozen
    Non hikers only feign interest....if that.

    These days im usually gone somewhere for a month every year. My non-hiking wife never asks questions or asks to see pics. Means nothing to her. I dont ask to see pics from her scrapbooking weekends either.
    Last edited by MuddyWaters; 12-27-2018 at 22:54.

  16. #96
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    Ohh, LOL, this thread isn't done yet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Some sc%$mbags beat up Seniors for their SS checks too. That doesn't justify me doing it.
    i'm not encouraging the false acquisition of the certificate. i'm encouraging the proper assessment of the certificate's value (basically nothing).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Next time the $379 truck payment is due to the finance company I'm going to send in $300. When they add in a late fee or send a letter stating the entire payment hasn't been remitted as I signed my name agreeing to in a contract to receive the financing benefit I'm going to say "stop being a purist, why are you so legalistic?, I didn't know we were following the letter of the contract."
    if the ATC (laughably huge if) wants to put in some manner of verification of completion process and starts rejecting applicants who don't meet whatever criteria they create then your analogy works better.

    if the terms of your loan are "we'd like you to send us $379 a month, please" and there are no late fees or penalties and at the end of the loan terms you still receive the bill of sale no matter how much you pay a month, how much are you going to send?

  19. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by KnightErrant View Post
    I guess I'm a purist? The only bits of trail I didn't walk on my thru-hike this year were a couple hundred yards that were underwater from flooding at Watauga Lake, and then where the trail crosses that busy road in Daleville. Otherwise, I walked past every white blaze. But being "purists" became almost a game, and we would laughingly acknowledge that we were being pretentious when we back-tracked to exit a shelter on the same spur trail or doubled back if we got dropped off at a different end of the trail head parking lot or whatever. I didn't think people weren't real thru-hikers if they skipped that silly stuff or took blue blazes sometimes, as long as they walked the whole way. Even yellow blazing doesn't bother me, since it doesn't affect my hike at all, but I personally would feel disingenuous calling my own hike a "thru-hike" in that case.

    I did see an instagram post featured on the Trek or WWH or something, where the girl talked about her PCT thru-hike and how "it wasn't a perfect thru-hike, but it was MY thru-hike" and then declared that she had hiked 1800 miles. I mean, that's something like 70% of that trail. A totally admirable LASH, but why call that a thru? That seemed a little rude to the folks who walked 800 miles more than her. But that begs the question of what percentage gets to qualify. Strictly by definition, it's 100%. According to the AT people who say "It's a 2000 miler certificate, so you can miss up to 190 miles," about 90% is sufficient. To that girl, it was 70%.

    To me, it's kind of like a group project back in school. Yellow-blazing thru-hikers are the group members who don't do as much work, but get the same grade. Mildly annoying, but honestly? I only care about my grade.

    I sloshed through that flooding at Watauga Lake and then back thru it to the hostel when I realized my failing boot wouldn’t make it to Damascus. With new boots I took the blue blazed high water route.
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  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    nobody really cares about your little walk in the woods


    unless all the blazes are licked---then everyone cares....

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