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AT Hikers

Profile: St. Rick, Slainte, & Chigger
By Ken Anderson
Sep 6, 2004 - 4:56:00 PM

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St. Rick, Slainte, and Chigger came into the Magic City Morning Star & Hard Drive Cafe on September 6, 2004 after completing a northbournd thru-hike. Here are their profiles.

Also known as Richard Bayley, St. Rick is from Bristol, England. He first heard of the Appalachian Trail five or six years ago while a book by Bill Bryson. At the time he decided to forego some of the usual tourist stuff and spent a few days along the AT in the Shenandoahs. Making the entire journey from Georgia to Maine seemed too daunting a task, but he did keep up hiking, walking the Bibbulmun Track in Western Australia, a 600 mile hike, in 2001, preparing for a northbound thru-hike on the Appalachian Trail in 2004.

St. Rick completed the trip in 5 months and 3 weeks. He doesn't think that he will do it again, at least not for a very long time, and then it might be a southbound trip. Before then, however, he would hike the Pacific Crest Trail.

His favorite part of the journey was the Grayson Highlands and the White Mountains. His least favorite experience was having a drainage stream appear overnight through his tent in Maine.

Slainte, also known as Josh Mahoney, is from Tampa, Florida. He also completed the hike in about 5 months and 3 weeks. He doesn't think he'll hike the AT again, but will probably hike the Pacific Crest Trail in 2007.

Asked about his favorite part of the journey, he said it was the friends he met along the way. The worse was when he cut a hole in the bottom of his tent. He set it up in the middle of a pouring rainstorm and had 2-3 inches of water in his tent.

Chigger's real name is Diana Spartis, and she is from the East Coast. She left Springer Mountain in Georgia on March 29, arriving at the north end on September 5, 2004, making it in about one week over five months. Although she had never thru-hiked before, she had done section hikes. She says that she mike hike the AT again, but not until after she has tried some of the other long distance trails such as the Pacific Crest Trail, Catamount, etc.

Her favorite part of the trip was the White Mountains, Maine, and Roan Mountain. Her least favorite was Goose Eye Montain, and the chicken ladders.

Asked what the town of Millinocket could do to make life easier for AT hikers at the northern end of the trail, providing transportation from Baxter State Park to Millinocket, and from Millinocket to Medway, were high on her list.

St. Rick, also known as Richard Bayley, is from Bristol, England.

Slainte, also known as Josh Mahoney, is from Tampa, Florida.

Chigger, also known as Diana Spartis, is from the East Coast.

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