Things I learned about and from the AT – Staying Positive

Categories:Appalachian Trail | Camping Advice


Air mattress explodes as you crawl into your sleeping bag long cold sleepless nights. – “You chose to be out here and its better than sitting in a cube”

Sleeping bag zipper breaks and there are several cold sleepless nights -“You are still warm enough not to be in serious danger. You chose to be out here”

Wake up to freezing drizzle and you must continue on. – “LETS DO THIS”

Half way up a massive up and fading fast. – “Just keep hiking …. left foot right foot …. count your steps and rest after 30”

Those were some examples of how I kept myself going during some of the hardest times of my adventure. As long as you can stay positive anything can be accomplished. If you begin to fade into that black hole of negative attitude your mind will tear you apart both physically and mentally. So how do you keep positive even during the hardest times? Each person is different and they have their own techniques. I can not tell you how to do it or even suggest methods because everyone is different. What I can tell you is that everyone goes through these times on the AT. Some have lots of little moments others have several big moments that change their trip completely. None of the items above were huge but put them all together and they can weigh on you heavily.

The toughest time on the trail was the night my tent leaked and I was forced to stand under an awning for hours.  At first I was upset and angry my tent had leaked. My feelings then morphed into trying to stay warm and semi dry. Eventually the whole situation became funny. Regardless of the problems at hand it was still better than being stuck in a cube in my past life. Staying positive is mostly about the perspective you look at things with. Just remember  “it could always be worse” and  “there is someone else worse off than you”.

How do you stay positive during tough situations?

Happy Trails


Adam Nutting relishes being an avid backpacker, hiker, and all-around adventure junkie. While he currently spends his time hiking in the backcountry of southern Arizona, he grew up in Missouri, where he was naturally inclined to spend as much time as he could outdoors. Adam’s passion for the outdoors grew as he climbed the ranks of the Cub Scouts and the Boy Scouts, eventually attaining the rank of Eagle Scout.

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