I don’t want to hike all 2,184 miles, mind you. Even Bill Bryson of A Walk in the Woods fame couldn’t claim thru-hiker status for going the distance from Georgia to Maine in one season. That claim to fame goes to about 25% of all AT serious minded trail blazers.
Seriously, the only trail I’m usually blazing in the woods is the one back to the restrooms.
Neither Jimmy nor I were getting off easy when it came to hiking through the 18 canyons formed by glacial meltwater and stream erosion thousands of years ago. We made it through maybe half of those.
In the 1760’s, Pontiac, chief of the Ottawa tribe upriver from what is now Starved Rock, was slain by an Illiniwek Indian while attending a tribal council in southern Illinois. According to legend, during one of the battles that subsequently occurred to avenge his killing, a band of Illiniwek, under attack by a band of Potawatomi (allies of the Ottawa), sought refuge atop a 125-foot sandstone butte. The Ottawa and Potawatomi surrounded the bluff and held their ground until the hapless Illiniwek died of starvation – giving rise to the name Starved Rock. Makes me hungry for more history!
Fortunately, there were no beasts of the four legged variety on our most recent trip, although this fallen tree trunk showed potential when it came to the slithering variety.