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Denham Springs man hikes 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail

A Denham Springs man is back home after completing the journey of a lifetime on the Appalachian Trail. 

A Denham Springs man is back home after completing the journey of a lifetime on the Appalachian Trail.

Aaron Labarthe, 29, works for a pipe manufacturer. But in April of this year, he decided to tackle one of the crown jewels of the hiking world, the Appalachian Trail.

Source: Aaron Labarthe

Hiking Machine

Overnight, he turned into a non-stop hiking machine.

“Always kind of knew I wanted to do it and found a good time to do it, and I just… thought it was a now or never moment, so I went for it,” Labarthe said.

He decided to tackle one of the crown jewels of the hiking world, the Appalachian Trail.

Over the span of four and a half months, he hiked 2,200 miles from Georgia to Maine, roughly 25 miles a day.

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On only a few occasions did he stay in a hotel, spending almost every night camping in the wilderness while on the Appalachian Trail.

“Pack everything up, eat some oatmeal if you can,” Labarthe said. “Get some calories in and you start, pretty much a twelve hour day of hiking through the mountains.”

Although he undertook the task alone, he made quite a few friends along the way.

 

Source: Aaron Labarthe

An Exclusive Hiking Club

The Appalachian Trail is a popular adventure for hiking enthusiasts, but only a rare group can say they’ve walked the entire way.

Labarthe said his favorite part was the Grayson Highlands in Virginia, where he made some more friends.

“When you get to the top of this amazing mountain, there are these herds of wild ponies,” he said. “And they’re used to hikers coming up there, and so they walk up to you and they lick the salt off your legs and your arms.”

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Labarthe says out of all the things he missed back in Louisiana, food is near the top of the list.

While on the Appalachian Trail, his diet consisted of mostly candy bars, tortillas, oatmeal, and cheese.

Source: Aaron Labarthe

 

More Trails To Be Blazed

But he still has his sights set on more hiking challenges, including the Pacific Crest Trail on the West Coast and the Continental Divide Trail across the Mountain West.

“I think maybe one or two of those could be in my future, maybe,” Labarthe said.

Those two trails, plus the Appalachian Trail, are known as the “Triple Crown” of hiking.

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