Maybe Next Year…

You may have noticed that I haven’t posted in over a week.  Unfortunately, I am off the trail at this time.  I began feeling weak and fatigued shortly after leaving Damascus.  I reached Atkins, VA and decided to contact a friend in Virginia and see if she could pick me up.  I thought I might need a rest for a few days.  A few days after leaving the trail I developed a severely swollen lymph node behind my right ear, and the fatigue and body aches got worse.  The upshot is that I am being treated for Lyme Disease at this time.  My hike is over for this year while I rest and recover.  My hope is that we caught this early and that it will not have long term implications.  I appreciate everyone’s support, both for myself and for Flagstaff Shelter Services.  This has been an amazing experience and one I want to continue.  My intention, at this time, is to continue to hike the Appalachian Trail in years to come, and to eventually complete it.  I wish everyone the best.

Categories: Appalachian Trail Hike | Tags: | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “Maybe Next Year…

  1. Sweetspot Candy Henderson

    Shrink, So sorry to hear you are off trail. I will join you next year were ever you start. I enjoyed meeting you on the trail and hiking with you. I believe it was in the Smokies were we met. I also have have special place in my heart for you cause. Keep up. Sweetspot.

  2. (Darius) Russell Ledbetter

    Well, Tamara…

    I am in one of my favorite restaurants in Asheville, which has Wi-Fi, and I am quite honestly a little bit devastated. Certainly you did the right thing by getting off the trail when you have contracted Lyme Disease, but for some strange, silly reason, I really was living vicariously through you and your AT adventure, and I am a bit sad right now.

    I am really sorry that this happened. I guess you can section hike it. You certainly have much to be proud of!! You lived outside for more than two months and hiked 550 miles! SO VERY MUCH TO BE PROUD OF!!! It is SOOO true, and you must remember, it is the journey, not the destination.

    I am proud of you! No, I have never met you, and I probably never will–you were just the random hiker I decided to follow every day in this AT Class of 2012, but I am proud of this section of the journey for you. The AT, and certainly hiking it, are, indeed, a metaphor for life. From some of the comments I have read from some of your friends back in Arizona over the last couple of months, it seems that both you and they have understood that idea all along!

    God only knows you certainly have learned a lot, and accomplished much! This hike has been a great experience for you, I’m sure, and I hope and pray that you are okay and suffer no long term effects of Lyme Disease. Those deer ticks are dastardly little devils, aren’t they?!!!

    It’s been a great ride, following your progress as a modern day adventurer along the AT, and I will miss getting your daily updates and vicariously living through you on the trail. I hope to accomplish my own AT adventure (perhaps in 2013, not sure, could be 2014–if I even manage to make it to the starting line!) So Tamara…whatever life holds for you (and I hope it includes a fantastic finish atop Mt. Katahdin, sooner rather than later!) I wish you the absolute best…and perhaps someday I’ll meet you somewhere along the lazy river of life.

    Carpe Diem & Best always,

    Russ Ledbetter


    Healing energy and Godi loveds you very much and is taking good care of you.Flagstaff will ALWAYS be your HOME if you so chose.I am very busy getting ready for Pride in the Pines I am once again helping Kat with the kids area.Also Diane and I are goping to see Millesa Ethridge I CANNOT WAIT..Peace and sleep with the angels Nash.

  4. Bama

    Sorry you are sick and I wish you a speedy recovery. The trail will always be there waiting for you to return so try not to think about it too much. I enjoyed meeting you and spending time at trail days. Take care and will see you on the trail one day. Bama

  5. Best of luck Shrink! I do miss your company, but I can totally understand your decision. I hope you heal up and that the Lyme has no lasting effects. I’m taking a forced stay at Woods Hole to heal the ankle that was bothering me at Marion/Atkins, as I could barely walk on it when I came in. Brownie went home in Bastian, but I hear Unicoi should show up sometime today. Was a pleasure to be able to hike with you, and glad to hear you will be coming back out next year to do another section.

  6. Winkle

    So sorry to read that you have Lymes disease. I hope you will be feelling better soon. I really enjoyed meeting you and spending time with you at trail days. I wish you the very best and hope our paths will cross one day.

  7. I’m so sorry. I was hoping to catch you on my downhill run. Take care of yourself.

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