• Mary Anderson

Thru-hiking: A Glossary of Terms

Yard sale: When a hiker pulls everything out of their pack to dry or resupply.

Thru-hiker: Someone who does the whole trail. Section hiker: One trying to do whole trail in two or more years. Sobo: Doing it from north to south (SOuthBOund). Nobo: From south to north (NOrthBOund). Trail name: People take on trail names and are seldom known by their given name. Slack packing: Hiking without your pack. Trail angel: A person who helps hikers. Trail magic: When really kind things happen on the trail. It is what trail angels provide. Tramily: A group of people who become like a family on the trail. Bonk: To crash, energywise. Yogi: To mention your state of hunger to someone and allow them the opportunity to share their excess food. Hiker hunger: The state that catches up to most hikers when hunger sets in and food is an all-consuming thought. Cowboy camp: To sleep under stars without a tent. Blowdown: Usually a tree that is across the trail that one has to climb over or under. Calorie load: Eating a lot of calories to assuage hiker hunger; usually done in town. Drink the koolaide: To do one hike and know you want to do more and more. Ayce: All-you-can-eat establishment. Hiker-friendly: Self-explanatory. Doesn't mind smelly hikers coming through its doors. Hiker trash: Hikers, often in town, who stick out by not following social norms. They may be sitting on a lawn repacking food, eating a lot in an ayce restaurant, or resting on a curb in town. Hyoh: Hike your own hike; do your own thing. Nearo: A day when very few or almost zero miles are walked. Zero: A day off from hiking; zero miles walked. Stealth camp: Trying not to be seen where you camp due to being in town or in a restricted area. Sometimes necessary if you just can't make the miles or find a place in town. Maildrop: Package sent to self containing food and supplies needed for a section of trail. Puffy: A type of lightweight warm jacket most hikers carry. (I use a wool shirt!) Relo: A relocation of a section of trail. Spork: A combo fork/spoon/knife, often made of hard plastic. Getting your trail legs: Feeling strong and in shape, usually a few weeks in. Ultralight: Hikers who carry the least and lightest equipment. Stupid light: Going so ultralight that you don't have what you need for comfort. Yellow blazing: Walking a paved road instead of the trail (reference to the yellow line). Purist: A hiker who tries to hike every step of the actual trail with no shortcuts. Trail town: A town friendly to hikers with good places to stay and resupply

Yard sale: When a hiker pulls everything out of their pack to dry or resupply. Vortex: The comfort of a place, often a town that becomes hard to leave. Yoyo: Finish a trail then turn around and start back the other way. AT: Appalachian Trail. PCT: Pacific Crest Trail. CDT: Continental Divide Trail. Triple Crown: Doing all three of those trails. Vitamin I: Ibuprofin. Base weight: Pack weight of everything minus food and water. Camel up: To drink as much as you can at one water source. Flip flop: To jump around on the trail. Hiker box: A place hikers leave stuff they don't want that others can take for free. Usually in towns where hikers freqent. Hiker funk: The way we smell out here.

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