jupiterhikes

Life of the Wanderlust

About

A cute pony and myself in the Grayson Highlands on the Appalachian Trail

 

My name is Jupiter, 26 years old, born and raised in south Florida, travel chosen to be experienced by foot.

In 2012 I attempted a thru hike of the Appalachian Trail, making it about 400 miles until I was forced to quit. My inexperience and general lack of backpacking knowledge had me carrying a very beastly 60 pound backpack thinking I was prepared, in reality simply causing a lot of pain in my feet and ankles. Coming home I  forgot about backpacking for a little while, moved, and eventually came back to it after going down some very negative paths. I remembered having the time of my life up in those east coast Appalachian mountains, I packed my things, and started going out into the woods again near where I lived. Frankly I needed a hobby, and a place to go rebuild myself after a rough couple years. What was just an innocent thing turned into an obsession. Given the reason for failing my first thru hike a big topic of thought and exploration for every new trip was how I could lighten my pack, and walk more freely on the land. I soon found myself backpacking twice a week every week. Going camping nearly every day I had off, and much to my managers dismay, taking an extreme amount of vacations. I racked up roughly 2,000 miles of small sections locally as well as further north on the AT. Pushing myself further and harder with each hike, going through a great period of learning and self growth. I found myself wondering what to do with this new found joy. Bringing us to 2016 and my 4,800 mile Eastern Continental Trail thru hike.

As a Floridian I wanted to hike the Florida Trail, and I still felt I had unfinished business on the Appalachian Trail, so I decided to do both of those in a single year. Quitting a job I really enjoyed to do just one didn’t feel like much of a reason at the time. A friend joked that I, “should just connect the two.” I laughed, he laughed, I went home, and that joke haunted me. So I did, tacking on the 200 miles south to finish in the Keys, and roughly 800 miles north to start way up in Quebec, while still connecting the two trails I originally wanted to walk with a large section of smaller trails and roads in between. In this process I brought one home for the team, and even set a self supported speed record on my home states trail, averaging 39 miles a day for 28 days straight, in a fury of madness down the center of Florida.

Beyond that in 2017 I met a girl, hiked with her from New Hampshire on the Appalachian Trail up to Quebec on the International Appalachian Trail for about 500 miles. Later that summer after spending a months time in Montreal I flew to the west coast, and got my first taste of the Pacific Crest Trail. Hiking with friends, though heart broken over the girl, I solidified my feelings that it was time for another really big hike. The dream and obsession began again.

Here I am now in 2018 embarking on a 5,300 mile walk, a round trip, or yoyo as I say, of the PCT. From Mexico to Canada then back down to Mexico again via the west coast crossing this country twice, up then down in one continuous hike. My goal is to be the fastest to ever do it, though there has only ever been 3 before to complete the feat.

After this year I dream of going for more records in the hiking world, or should I find myself without any big responsibility again maybe yet another mega long walk.

If you wish to contact me, feel free to come through my email

Jupiterhike(at)gmail.com

If you wish to support me in sharing my passion, it is greatly appreciated

https://www.patreon.com/jupiterhikes

20150822_065537

Hiking a now not so often used section of the Florida Trail through Big Cypress, a gator calls from somewhere near

Jupiter

9 Comments

  1. Well written article!

  2. Hey I am also from Juoiter Florida. I am currently at Franconia Notch NOBO. I am at home getting dental work done and plan on returning next week to finish this thing. 363 miles to go, where are you? On trail or planning?

    • Hey kevin! I’m going to find you on Facebook if that’s ok! Still planning and training and saving for me. I plan to leave june 1st sobo.

      Awesome to know there’s more hikers in this area! Hit me up sometime when you’re itching for some trail.

      – jupiter

      • Been home since 10/4. Got off for the season in Monson, Maine as it was getting cold and I didn’t want to buy a warmer bag. Going back this June with my wife and hiking Monson to Kathadin. We might run into each other up there. I am thinking about hiking the Ocean to Lake trail, but maybe waiting another month to see if some of this rain gets out of here. Great luck to you, it will be an amazing experience trust me. Life changing.

  3. Greetings, just wanted to reach out to say thank you for taking the time to publish. Your tips and guidance (everything from Aquamira drops to Leokotape to generally keeping lightweight) allowed the lovely wife and myself to hike the OTL this week in three days. We worked hard, saw some amazing sights, and had an overall great time. Certainly some physically and mentally trying parts but on the whole it was a fantastic experience. I owe you a beer sometime if you’re interested – seriously, I’m in Jupiter so hit me up. Also, do let me know if you ever if you ever want a partner to knock out a quick trip in the area. I personally am interested in covering the OTL in two days in the next few months. Thanks again and best of luck on the ECT. Will be following you.

    • Three days is rough! I’m impressed! It’s been such a high rain year I encourage you to head out on an overnight or some day hikes next Jan-March, as it will likely be bone dry! What a thought right? Did you two run into my friend and local FTA chapter chair, Roy? He had mentioned a couple. Were you guys the ones looking for patches? If so Roy is the man! You certainly have earned them.

      I could get down with a beer or two, but my work schedule is weird. Either way, you can find me on Facebook as “Jupiter Hikes,” as well.

      Two days, now that’s something. I’d like you to seriously consider what it would take to go an extra 10 miles after already doing 20! It’s certainly an experience based around the hike, and not at all the camp. It takes me about 10 hours, with maybe one or two short breaks to knock out 31 miles. I’ll usually arrive at camp just in time to go to sleep. If you’re up for it, let me know, and it will be considered. I am meaning to head out there once or twice more in the next couple months.

      • Surprisingly we didn’t see a soul when we were out this time – I have done a number of long day hikes over portions of the trail and usually see at least one thru hiker. I did see a couple in JDSP last Sunday when I was doing a trial 26 mile day with a loaded pack. They were on their first day and were shooting for a five day trip. I expected to meet them at the lake end on Weds or so, when we set out, but never saw them. So they may have wrapped up earlier than expected for whatever reason. Hopefully they made better time than intended.

        Either way two days is definitely ambitious. Not sure really why I even want to other than why not?? Still in the consideration phase of that idea… The wife and I were blown away at the thought of people ultra-marathoning it. Don’t honestly see how it’s possible even if in the summer (wet!!) when the days are long.

        Anyway would love to reach out on Facebook but I seem to be the only person in our generation without an acct (yet). But like I said if you ever want a partner to do a fast-paced somewhat minimalist hike then do let me know. I believe you can access my email address via this site? Either way I’m serious about the beer sometime – would love to pick your brain on all matters hiking. I live in Abacoa and have a somewhat flexible schedule.

        Reading your tarp article now. Awesome stuff. Thanks again for your efforts in sharing this info.

      • PS – we had a gator experience of a similar magnitude to yours in your lollipop post. Son of a gun was laying underwater smack dab in the middle of the trail in hole in the wall. Would have literally stepped on him without knowing had I not been wearing polarized glasses. We were easily within ten feet and he was 6-8 feet. We gave it a wide berth but it shook us up quite badly. And by quite badly I mean it scared the day lights out of us. Great times!

        • Yeah let’s go get a beer. That’s super strange! Can’t tell you how many times I’ve done this trail without any issue with snakes or gators. At least it’s a good story hahah!

Leave a Reply

© 2018 jupiterhikes

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑

%d bloggers like this: