Published: Fresh U. August 12, 2016. Viewable here.
29-year-old Tyler Socash will soon return to his alma mater, the University of Rochester, to talk to incoming freshmen about the importance of pursuing one’s passion. Presumably, he will also speak about his year-long, three part, 6,600 mile hike.
Socash started his journey hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, which spans from Canada to Mexico and is approximately 2,633 miles in length. The second part of his hike continued in New Zealand where he hiked Te Araroa, adding an additional 1,864 miles to his log. And, recently, he ended his hike, after taking a short stop in the Adirondack mountains, hiking the 2,185 mile Appalachian Trail.
“It’s been a dream come true, almost with a storybook ending,” Socash told Democrat and Chronicle. “Seeing the beauty and wild side of America has been the highlight of my adventure. I completed what I set out to do, and it feels unbelievable. It’s freeing and promising.”
Socash completed the three part hike over the span of 13 months, but took a month-long break in between each of leg of the journey.
His hike is displayed through Instagram photos on his personal account: @tylerhikes. Socash also documented his entire journey on his blog, viewable here.
‘I don’t think I got here by chance,” Socash wrote on a blog post uploaded after completing the second leg of his hike. “Every vacation I’ve ever made for myself has involved hiking. That’s 10 years of hiking! It may sound obsessive, but I’m doing what I love. I made the jump. I saved money for six years! I lived in squalor with five other amazing dudes back in Rochester. I never bought that tangerine Subaru CrossTrek. Thank goodness thru-hiking happens to be a relatively inexpensive way to have a long holiday!
“Thank you all for your support. It can get a bit lonely being so far from home. Your messages and well-wishes really matter. Sharing my appreciation for the natural world with you… I hope that matters. Not everyone can just walk away from life’s responsibilities right now, but if these posts do anything at all, I hope they inspire readers at work/home to value nature. Not as something to exploit, but rather to cherish.”