Can experiencing nature transform a life?! Last summer, record setting hiker and author Jennifer Pharr Davis visited several NCRL branches to share her story about how her adventures in nature have shaped her.
Last week, Davis released a 14 minute documentary film that explores the trail as a metaphor for life. Watch the documentary here.
Inspired? Check out a few of Davis’s books through our Hoopla Service. Start at here.
Becoming Odyssa: Adventures on the Appalachian Trail
After graduating from college, Jennifer isn’t sure what she wants to do with her life. Through inexperienced and unprepared, she feels drawn to the Appalachian Trail and sets out along on the long-distance footpath that stretches 2, 175 miles from Georgia to Maine. The next five months are the most physically and emotionally challenging of her life-coping with blisters and aching shoulders, hiking through endless torrents of rain and a blizzard, facing unwanted company and encountering tragedy. The trail becomes a modern day Odyssey that tests Jennifer’s faith in God, humanity and herself. But even at her lowest points, it provides enduring friendships, unexpected laughter, and the gift of self-discovery. With every step she takes, Jennifer transitions from an over-confident college graduate to a student of the trail. As she travels along the ridges of the ancient mountain chain, she realizes that she isn’t walking through nature-she realizes she is part of nature. And she learns that the Appalachian Trails is more than a 2,175 mile hike: it is a journey that will change a person forever.
Called Again: A Story of Love and Triumph
In 2011, Jennifer Pharr Davis became the overall record holder on the Appalachian Trail. By hiking 2,181 miles in 46 days – an average of 47 miles per day – she became the first female to ever set that mark. But this is not a book about records or numbers; this is a book about endurance and faith, and most of all love. The most amazing part of this story is not found at the finish, but is discovered through the many challenges, lessons and relationships that present themselves along the trail. This is Jennifer’s story, in her own words, about how she started this journey with a love for hiking and more significantly a love for her husband Brew. Together, they were able to overcome rugged mountains and raging rivers, sleet storms and 100 degree heat, shin-splints and illnesses. They made new friends and tested old friendships; they shared together laughter, and tears – a lot of tears. But, through it all, they fell more in love with one another and with the wilderness. By completing this extraordinary amateur feat, Jennifer rose above the culture of multi-million dollar sports contracts that is marked by shortcuts and steroids. This is the story of a real person doing something remarkable. Jennifer Pharr Davis is a modern role-model for women – and men. She is an authentic hero.
46 Days by Brew Davis
46 Days chronicles the trials, successes, joys, and frustrations of Jennifer Pharr Davis’s record-winning Appalachian Trail thru-hike through the eyes of her husband, Brew Davis. Brew lead her pit crew, the group of generous, loving hikers who supported Jen along the way, providing company along the epic trail and as much food as Jen could stomach. Experience the trek with Jen and Brew as they battle shin splints and a stomach scare that threatens to end the attempt early, encounter wildlife at every turn, and meet the colorful cast of characters that help Jen complete her journey. 46 Days also includes an introduction and afterword by Jennifer with first-hand reflections on her life-changing voyage.