Mary was raised in Warwick, New York, a town that sits five miles from the Appalachian Trail (AT). She didn’t grow up a hiker and it wasn't until her years away at college that she came to know the AT. After graduating from the Art Institute of Boston with a BFA in Graphic Design, Mary decided to postpone the obligatory route in which her life was headed. Instead, she left for the AT — solo. Having never backpacked and having only camped in her parent’s backyard, calling it a challenge would be a monumental understatement.
Despite her rookie status, Mary hiked the Appalachian Trail, a length of 2,175 miles, in just over four months. As the miles accumulated, Mary became comfortable with the walk, both physically and mentally. Contemplating her next adventure while backpacking through New Hampshire’s beautiful White Mountains, Mary had a thought: to complete the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) from Mexico to Canada. That following spring she left for the PCT’s southern terminus and five months later, touched the Canadian border, completing all 2,650 miles. During that time, Mary was inspired by the intoxicating beauty of the mountains and wilderness of the west. Shortly after, she moved to these mountains — first to Mount Shasta, California, and then to Oregon.
And of course, the inevitable question awaited: Where to hike next? The answer: The Continental Divide Trail (CDT)! The CDT represented the third leg of the Triple Crown, an achievement recognized by completing the lengths of the AT, PCT, and CDT. In 2011, according to the American Long Distance Hiking Association-West, only 100 people had completed the Triple Crown since they began tracking it in 1994. Of those, less than a fifth were women and only a handful attempted the trip solo. Completing the CDT has become one of the most profound accomplishments of her life, leaving an impression that guides Mary's thoughts, decisions, and dreams to this day.
Now residing in Oregon, Mary has discovered countless trails, rivers, and adventures out her back door. But the allure of the long trail always beckons. After completing the Triple Crown, she continued on to hike New Zealand’s Te Araroa. Driven by adventure, Mary flew across the world and hiked southward from Cape Reinga to Bluff, where she spent four months backpacking New Zealand’s 1,800-mile trail and sightseeing the coasts, fjords, glaciers, and rural townships.
For 2016, Mary has set her sights on completing the Calendar Triple Crown, an endeavor that requires hiking the lengths of the AT, PCT, and CDT all in the course of one calendar year. 7,500 miles, three trails and a year of hiking through any and all of the obstacles and challenges that lay within. If successful, Mary will be the first woman to complete such a feat. Fewer than a handful of men have completed this extraordinary challenge and Mary strives to stand beside them.
We can't wait to follow your journey Mary!
Completing the Calendar Triple Crown and hiking 7,500 miles is no easy task. Fortunately for Mary, she’ll have Salazon Chocolate accompanying her on her journey. Check out Mary’s favorite chocolate bar, 57% Organic Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt & Coffee, to see if it’s the right jump starter for you. Take 10% off your Salazon Chocolate order with discount code HIKINGCHOCOLATE.
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