LOTR Inspires Hikers

The Lord of the Rings fascination reaches far beyond trail names. It seemed like every AT shelter had “Not all who wander are lost” carved into it somewhere; the quote also serves as the most overused thru-hiking Instagram caption. It’s so ubiquitous that most a number of people don’t know it’s from Bilbo’s poem about Aragorn in The Fellowship of the Ring. “Second breakfast” is a beloved part of a hobbit’s diet and an essential part of a thru-hiker’s as well. And one time, while contemplating a blue-blazed, bad-weather bypass in a storm, I noticed “Frodo and Sam did worse!” written on one side of the sign at the fork and “Voldemort was a purist” penned on the other, like angel and devil fantasy advisers.


And in a weird sort of way, thru-hikers are dealing with things more akin to a character in a fantasy novel than anything else. They’re facing low odds of success, adapting to unforeseen scenarios, and picking themselves up after various obstacles knock them down again and again. They grow weary and run-down over the course of the journey. They also get tougher, wiser, and sometimes grow long beards. And when it’s over, they have the deep-seated need to do it all again—I just set out on my second thru-hike, this time on the Pacific Crest Trail. In general, relatable is not a word that first comes to mind when thinking about the fantasy genre, but thru-hikers can relate. After all, when you boil it down, The Lord of the Rings really tells the story of an awful lot of walking.


Folksonomies: fantasy hiking

/art and entertainment/movies (0.582400)
/art and entertainment/books and literature/mythology (0.576469)
/art and entertainment/books and literature/fan fiction (0.564424)

The Lord of the Rings (0.954285): dbpedia_resource
Hiking (0.703756): dbpedia_resource
Long-distance trail (0.626616): dbpedia_resource
The Lord of the Rings film trilogy (0.612390): dbpedia_resource
Thru-hiking (0.591477): dbpedia_resource
Hobbit (0.588846): dbpedia_resource
Appalachian Trail (0.587904): dbpedia_resource
Backpacking (0.574507): dbpedia_resource

 Why Thru-Hikers Are Obsessed with Fantasy Books
Electronic/World Wide Web>Internet Article:  Booroojian, Rebecca (2019-08-12), Why Thru-Hikers Are Obsessed with Fantasy Books, Retrieved on 2019-11-07
  • Source Material [www.outsideonline.com]
  • Folksonomies: fantasy hiking