|Eric Strong Photography
Specializing in Location Portraiture and Nature Images.
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About one year after I posted this story of my Ozark Highlands Trail thru-hike, I received my first e-mail with comments from someone who had read the description of my trip. The writer was not happy. The writer noted that I did not include a detailed, daily trip journal, with photographs. He/she claimed I could not have covered the distance in the noted time. The e-mail went as far as to speculate that I was running a sales or marketing scam. Let me answer a few of the speculations contained in this e-mail.
Claim: I need to include a detailed, daily trip journal, with photographs.
Answer. No, I don't need to. I highly recommend you purchase Tim Ernst's Ozark Highlands Trail guidebook.
Claim. The sender indicated he has experience hiking the AT, and there was no way I could backpack 170+ miles in a little over 9 days.
Answer. Lightweight/ultralightweight backpackers can cover 20+ miles per day. If you don't believe, you might want to do some internet research. Still don't believe, you can look at the waypoint datestamps in the GPS data. If you believe I have faked the GPS data, try this. During the trip, I logged the crossing date and time at every trail register I passed. You can contact the US Forest Service to see if they have retained the logs which will verify my distance/time numbers. Still don't believe me, you can have some more unbelieveable stuff by reading the details of my 11 day, 235 mile backpacking trip on the Ouachita National Recreation Trail conducted during the Spring of 2005.
Claim. I'm running a sales/marketing scam.
Answer. Get real!