Will Richard, Don Hudson, Cliff Young, and Coordinator Amy Barker represented the Maine Chapter of the International Appalachian Trail at the 40th ALDHA Gathering in Williamstown, MA, in early October. It was a well-attended gathering with hundreds of thru hikers, section hikers, and people who love the Appalachian Trail. The Maine Chapter of the IAT had a presence in the exhibition hall and held two presentations.
On Saturday, Don Hudson and Will Richards made presentations for attendees. Don Hudson provided an update on trail conditions and activities in North America and reported on the installation in May 2022 of a special sculpture honoring the centuries of relationship between Scotland, Ireland, and the Appalachian region of the United States, with a special focus on the IAT and the AT––symbolic links across the Atlantic. You can view the presentation on our YouTube channel here.
Will chronicled his research work and travels in the region of northeastern United States, adjacent Canada, the eastern Arctic and Greenland that he has coined the “maritime far northeast”. He had many interesting slides and a great presentation of the history of the International Appalachian Trail in Greenland. He also talked about many of the people he met on his many trips to throughout the region, and had some beautiful slides of the scenery and beautiful vistas there. You can view his full presentation here on our Youtube channel.
The table at the exhibitor’s hall had a nice flow of people who have walked parts of the trail or who were interested in hiking it. It was a great chance to talk to people about the trail, and we had a chance to have some good conversations with everyone who stopped by. There were several recent thru hikers and section hikers who stopped by the table to talk.
Waterlilly, whose journal we featured in a recent article, was in attendance with her beautiful ceramics. It was wonderful to meet her in person and get her feedback on her experience on the trail this year. She does not yet have a website, but she has made some very attractive IAT and AT themed ornaments and other ceramic items for sale.
There were a wide variety of classes and sessions offered and a nice variety of different vendors, trail clubs, and organizations in attendance. It was a perfect New England fall weekend, the leaves and the scenery there were absolutely brilliant. We all had a wonderful time making connections with friends old and new, and sharing information about the IAT with all.