In the mid 70's, I became an "outdoor person". At that time, I was working on heavy equipment and several of the guys I worked with ran a "Boy Scout" troop. They asked me to join them and I developed a "deep appreciation" of nature and became a believer in the "outdoor life".
There are two access points to the " Appalachian Trail " from West Virginia. The "major" one is in Harpers Ferry but "another" is near a little town called Linside on Peters Mountain. Its near the Southern border of the state. Several friends and I used to travel there and stay at an old "farm house" on the weekends. We'd work on the trail to the top of the mountain. It took us several years to blaze this connecting trail.
I still think of that when I work a station near the Appalachian Trail and this morning I worked a station near Atlanta Georgia. The "AT" runs about 2,100 miles from there to Maine. I can cover the entire trail on 40 meters.
It also makes me think again of why I originally became a "Ham Radio Operator".
I think every radio operator has their "specialty mode". I especially like "QRP" operations because it's a mode that can be used in remote area's with a light weight battery, a telegraph key, and a simple wire antenna. But you won't find many operators using more than a QRPp rigs when hiking long distances. The best radio for long distance hikers is a 2 meter HT. I occasionally work a station "right on the trail" even from here in Charleston.
I've hiked a few hundred miles on the "AT" section along the Blue Ridge Parkway near the Skyline Drive and some in the Smoky Mountains in North Carolina and even parts of it in New York. That 2 meter HT can be a life saver in an emergency.
Today, I'm hardly hearing "anything" on two meters. It's a shame it isn't used much now.
My little HT, and extra battery pack to get 2 watts output power, and a pocket "roll up J-pole" can connect me with stations over a hundred miles away. It weighs hardly anything and I never know I'm carrying it along on a day hike.