Peace Pilgrim: Paving the Way as the First Woman AT Thru-Hiker
The Appalachian Trail (AT) holds a special place in the hearts of outdoor enthusiasts and adventure seekers. Spanning over 2,100 miles from Georgia to Maine, it challenges hikers with its rugged terrain and unpredictable weather. While thousands of hikers have embarked on this epic journey, only a select few have earned the distinction of being the first to accomplish such a feat. Among these pioneers is a remarkable woman named Peace Pilgrim, who etched her name in history as the first female AT thru-hiker. Her story is one of determination, inner peace, and the transformative power of nature.
Born in 1908, Mildred Lisette Norman , (Peace Pilgrim’s) early life was marked by a deep desire to understand and promote peace. After spending many years spreading her message across the United States, she felt an undeniable calling to embark on an incredible journey – to become the first woman to hike the entire Appalachian Trail. In 1952, at the age of 44, she set off on her extraordinary adventure.
Peace Pilgrim faced numerous challenges on her trailblazing journey. The Appalachian Trail was a relatively unknown and uncharted path for long-distance hiking, making her feat even more remarkable. As she ventured through dense forests, over majestic mountains, and across breathtaking landscapes, she encountered logistical obstacles and physical hardships. However, her unwavering determination and indomitable spirit propelled her forward, surpassing every hurdle in her path.
Peace Pilgrim carried with her only the bare necessities, emphasizing her commitment to simplicity and minimalism. Her belongings consisted of a tunic with pockets for a comb, a toothbrush, a pen, and a small amount of money for emergencies. She relied on the kindness of strangers for food and shelter, trusting that her mission of peace would be supported along the way.
Throughout her arduous hike, Peace Pilgrim utilized her unique opportunity to spread her message of peace and love. She engaged with fellow hikers, locals, and anyone she met along the trail, sharing her philosophy that inner peace is the key to achieving peace in the world. Her humble presence and sincere dedication resonated with people, leaving an indelible impact on all who crossed her path.
Peace Pilgrim completed her historic journey of the Appalachian Trail in 1953, becoming the first woman to hike the entire trail. However, her impact extended far beyond the hiking community. After completing the AT, she continued to embark on countless walking pilgrimages, covering over 25,000 miles throughout North America, spreading her message of peace until her death in 1981.
Today, Peace Pilgrim’s legacy lives on, inspiring individuals from all walks of life. Her unwavering commitment to peace and simplicity serves as a beacon of hope in a world often consumed by chaos and materialism. Her story encourages us to find our own paths towards inner peace and to recognize the transformative power of nature and the great outdoors.
We were so inspired by her story we decided to brew a beer and name it for her.
Peace Pilgrim – Hazy Pale Ale 5% – This pale ale is light and smooth with an explosion of hop flavor to balance out the beer. We use a thiolized yeast strain from Jasper Yeast to enhance the hop characteristics for brighter, juicier flavors. Galaxy and YQH-1320 hops come together for heightened flavors of peach, papaya, citrus and stone fruit. Named to honor the first ever female AT thru-hiker. Come give it a try next time you visit one of our locations in Winchester VA or Front Royal VA.
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