Monthly Archives: April 2013

(Eric) Third Sponsor: Barney Butter!

almond butter

Food is an incredibly important part of any backpacking trip, especially extended ones (like an AT/IAT thru-hike). You need good, nutritious food that has a great calorie-to-weight ratio.  It’s also an incredibly important subject for both Kristin and me.  We like our food healthy and delicious, and a three thousand mile trek in the wilderness is not about to get in the way of that.  Which is why we both grinned like school children when we found some of Barney Butter’s Almond Butter in the mail.

cheering children

First, it’s awesome these guys sent us something and we thank them for that. Second, this stuff is fantastic! Like, hold-on-while-I-just-spread-this-on-everything-I-can-find kind of fantastic. I’m an almond fan, so I was expecting something pretty good, but this stuff really blew me away.  This is not only something that will be incredibly useful for us on the trail, but we are also excited to be eating this on a regular basis.  Pretty hard to beat that.
That’s not even the best part. What could be better than deliciousness you ask? Almonds have awesome nutritious benefits.  Benefits like keeping your brain working right (assuming mine was working right in the first place) and providing really important fats (the good kind) that are key for any diet.  When you’re burning through calories like crazy on a thru-hike, nutritious benefits can’t be overstated: THIS STUFF ROCKS.
On top of that it has only four, natural, ingredients and is made in a peanut-free facility, is peanut free, and gluten free.  Allergic specifically to peanuts?  I give you the almond butter and jelly sandwich.  With this stuff, it’s awesome.  Check them out here:
We’re really excited about this, and we’re really excited to have them as a sponsor.  Looking at these makes me hungry.
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(Kristin and Eric) 20 Reasons to Hike the International Appalachian Trail

We recently announced that we will not only be doing the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, but that we will also continue to hike along the International Appalachian Trail through Canada.  This trail continues from Maine and ends in Newfoundland. We were inspired by a dream Kristin had.  She woke up one morning and said, “I just had a dream that we were looking at Katahdin and saw mountains past it.  We both looked at each other and said, ‘Why would we stop at Katahdin?'”. About a month later, Kristin stumbled upon the International Appalachian Trail (IAT)  while doing some intensive gear research.  Eric recieved a frantic text saying, “The dream was real! We can keep hiking!”.  A few moments later, the decision was made.  Here are 20 reasons why we made that decision.

katahdin1) Kristin’s Dream

2) Google telling us Kristin’s Dream was real

3) Living in the woods for 8-9  months instead of  6

4) Maximum use of expensive gear

mounties5) Mounties – Everyone should see a Mountie at least once in their lifetime.

6) Caribou – It’s always worth it to see new species of animals and the environments they live in.

7) Rugged wilderness – There is something magical about an untamed wilderness that isn’t replicable. The IAT provides a trek through a real backcountry that we can’t pass up.

caribou-18) Learning French – Nous ne parlons pas francais bon.

9) French food – Snails! We think anyway.

10) Eric’s family history – Eric’s mother’s side of the family can trace it’s lineage back to Canada, and there are a number of historical sites for the family up there.  We havn’t seen them, and we’d like to.

matane11) More solitary experience – The Appalachian Trail has been described as a social trail.  The International Appalachian Trail is not.  Hiking both will give us the opportunity to experience both, something that we don’t want to pass up.

12) Matane Wildlife Reserve – The reserve has been identified with breathtaking panoramas and a plethora of wildlife.  One of Canada’s most beautiful locations.  Hiking through it will be a treat.

13) Gaspe Coast – A gorgeous northern coastline.  Hiking through the less visited areas gaspe coastand following the coast will not only be awesome, but also a great change in landscape from the previous two thousand or so miles.

14) To see how emaciated we can get – We hear acorns can be delicious.

15) Nature doesn’t stop at an imaginary line

Beardlong16) Eric’s beard length

17) To go through as many pairs of hiking boots as possible – We’ll mail them to anyone who wants them once we’ve thoroughly used them.

18) National Geographic called the IAT one of the world’s best hikes

19) We’ll get to test our compass and map skills – The Appalachian Trail is well maintained and identified.  The International Appalachian Trail is a work in progress, and so we will need additional orientation skills to navigate it.  That sounds awesome to us.



                   20) Neither of us has been to Newfoundland. What better way to travel than to walk there?

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