Appalachian Hikers Trudge Through Recession

Trail provides temporary respite from worldly woes
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 28, 2009 10:43 AM CDT
Greg Morath of Cincinnati, Ohio, pauses on Chairback Mountain overlooking Long Pond on the 100-Mile Wilderness section of the Appalachian Trail north of Monson, Maine.    (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)
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(Newser) – They won’t find Mark Sanford, but those hiking the Appalachian Trail are finding an escape, however temporary, from the recession, writes Thomas Pierce for NPR. On the trail, hikers get new identities: nicknames like “Pusher,” an ibuprofen-hawking walker who was an office manager in a previous life. He quit his job to walk his way from Georgia to Maine; another hiker says he turned a layoff into an opportunity to make the trek.

The trail may actually have helped him in the job search: He’s made a few connections he may be able to milk when he returns to civilization. Trekker “Couscous” is taking a 6-month leave from her job, though she’s not sure it will wait for her. If it doesn’t, she says she’ll come up with something. Who knows, by the time they reach the trail’s end, “there's no telling what the world might look like,” Pierce writes.