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Peakbagger extraordinaire meets the A.T. March 21, 2010

Posted by Jenny in hiking, peakbagging.
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Peter shows he's ready for adverse conditions

I’ve only hiked with Peter J. Barr one time.  But that was quite a time.  He was one of the five participants on the famous Woolly Tops expedition.  On that outing, he maintained an admirable calm and good humor while clawing his way through rhododendron thickets, wading down flooded streams, and even while suffering a temporarily dislocated shoulder as he lunged his way up to a rock ledge.

Peter starts thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail tomorrow.  You can follow his adventures here.  I think of his thru-hike as a kind of “deluxe” thru-hike—that’s my word, not his.  He’s actually planning on doing some side trips to various peaks in the northeast, in particular the New England Hundred Highest, with possibly a couple of Adirondack 5000 footers thrown in.  In some cases he’ll be able to do short bushwhacks off the A.T. to get an extra peak (for instance, for Mt. Mendon in Vermont, which is near the A.T. as it approaches Killington).  In other cases he’ll have to either rent a car or get a ride to points a bit further away (for Boundary, White Cap, and Cupsuptic Snow in Maine: closest A.T. point is around the Crockers and the Bigelows).  If he goes for Marcy and Algonquin in the Adirondacks, that means a pretty long car ride (closest A.T. point looks to be, actually, also around Killington).

And he is going to attempt this without sacrificing the bottom-line thru-hiker standard: to do every foot of the A.T.!

If anyone can do it, Peter can do it.  He already has a ridiculously impressive list of peakbagger accomplishments.  He’s done the 6000 footers of the south, but not only that, he’s done the 5000 footers, which I’m not sure anyone else has accomplished.  That involves an awful lot of bushwhacking.  And he’s done the 900 miles of trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Peter is also very active in preserving the North Carolina fire towers and in getting people to enjoy them—and he’s published a book on the subject.  In keeping with that interest, he is making the preservation of the tower on Mt. Shuckstack in the Smokies a goal that will be furthered by his thru-hike.  He’s asking that people consider donating $21.78 toward that cause, or one cent for every mile of the A.T.  You can do that through a click on his website.

Best of luck to you, Peter.  You’re embarking on a great adventure!

Peter strolls up a log on Woolly Tops