Growing up in northern Vermont, the Long Trail was a constant presence in my life.  Friends and parents of friends would share their stories of hiking the trail. Looking at the horizon, I could trace its winding path. Like many Vermonters, I am familiar with overnight hiking trips and what the weight of a 40 pound backpack feels like (terrible), but I never considered trying to hike the entire trail.  However, this summer I decided to start section hiking the Long Trail. The motivation finally came from Cheryl Stayed’s memoir Wild, which inspired me to contemplate the idea of hiking on my own. After a lot of research and consulting with Carol Irish, who celebrated her 50th birthday by thru-hiking the trail solo, I have set out to section hike the Long Trail.