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An AT thru hike question from a disabled person

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I Had a massive stroke in 1990. besides some memory and spatial issues I've almost completely recovered besides not being able to use the fingers and severe weakness in my left hand. 

I've been thinking about hiking the A.T. and I've been reading about some of the really rough parts on the northern sections of the trail.

I'm looking for any advice that you might have including should I even try it or any suggestions you might have to make it easier for me.

Just pretend I don't have a left hand or use your imagination.

Thank You - My first post,


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I think you could do it. Did you hear about this woman? http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/15/health/turning-points-paralyzed-woman-hikes-appalachian-trail/

The other thing is you don't have to hike the whole trail for it to be a fulfilling experience. Bill Bryson didn't hike the whole trail but wrote a best-selling book about it. Start easy when the weather is nice, and if you love it keep going. When you've already hiked nearly 2000 miles the rough northern parts won't seem so bad.

Edited by toejam
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Thanks toejam. I had read that there were ladders that had to be used in the northern segments and some places required hand over hand climbing. Those were a few things I was worried about.

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  • 3 weeks later...
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Aaron Zagrodnick

I think where there's a will there's a way for sure and you could find a way to either get through or bypass / skip those spots. Just getting to the trail might be the hardest part! Could also be a good idea to run it past a doctor of course, and perhaps heading out for a quick trip of a few days to do just one section could be a good experience. We have an article in our upcoming issue on a hiker / thru-hiker that's blind and has hiked the A.T. and other long trails and of course there's the story that @toejam linked to above...some amazing people and stories. Good luck, and let us know how it turns out!

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