Saturday, August 30, 2008

Speed Hikers, Women Hikers

Stephen Black uses Jennifer Pharr Davis's "record-breaking time of hiking the Appalachian Trail" as a jumping off point to caution women, all women, from venturing off into the woods alone. That's in his column titled "Women should not hike alone" in the 30 August 2008 issue of the Hendersonville, NC Times-News and preserved on their "Blue Ridge Now" web site.

He gets there through the point that
"She wanted to memorialize the death of the Bryants and Meredith Emerson who were killed while hiking in the woods.

"She hiked the trail to show that outdoor lovers won’t be deterred by one sick criminal. She hiked the trail to break the women’s speed record.

"Ms. Davis’ heart is in the right place. It is obvious she is a good, idealistic and decent person. I praise her for that. As far as her other reasoning however I totally disagree with it. As far as her speed record all I can say is this — Stop! Stop! Enough with the Olympics already!"
I kind of agree with him on this point. Does EVERYone hiking the Trail need to have a shtick of some kind? Whatever happened to hiking just to hike? (I know in my heart that most of the hikers are doing just that, not trying to be the first, oldest, youngest, fastest, or only SOMETHING to thru-hike. Maybe they just aren't worth a news story.)

On his main point, Black says he is just urging lots and lots of caution because one woman harmed is one woman too many. And there's no argument possible against that.

1 comment:

don brown said...

i am searching for at hikers from 1997 to contact-Don Brown trail name Santini or the great santini. love to hear from someone.