Martin Steel

I’ve quit my job

So today after 11 years of working at Mediaburst I handed in my notice. It’s been a great place to work - that’s why I’ve been there so long - but since they were taken over a year ago things just haven’t been the same.

So around October last year I started thinking about what should come next and stumbled accross an AMA on Reddit by a guy who’d just finished walking the full length of Appalachian Trail in America. My initial thought was something along the lines of “How the hell does anyone find a spare 6 months just to go for a walk?” and I thought nothing much more of it at the time.

However at the back of my mind the thought kept popping up of how interesting it sounded to go on a stupidly long walk. And, to cut a long story short, by early November I’d somehow convinced myself that I wanted to go on a 2,200 (ish) mile walk.

So in early December I headed off to London to ask the US Embassy very nicely if they’d give me a B2 (tourist) Visa - and they did :)

In mid March I’ll be jumping on a plane to Atlanta, Georgia, for day 1 of 6 or 7 months walking.

So here’s a few of the questions I’ve been asked so far…

What’s the Appalachian Trail?

Given that most people have never heard of it this seems a good place to start. The Appalachian Trail is a national scenic trail in the USA. It’s a touch under 2,200 miles long and runs from a car park just north of Atlanta in Georgia, to a mountain in the middle of nowhere in Maine (I looked on a map and didn’t recognise anywhere nearby).

What’s a thru-hike?

Thru-hiking is where you start at one end of the tail and carry on until you reach the other end. It doesn’t matter which end you start at - although I’m going to follow the trend and head north.


I don’t really know how to answer this one. After 11 years in the same job I fancy something new and sheer laziness has meant I’m not a homeowner yet so this seems like a good time. Quite how that something ended up being a 2000+ mile walk is beyond me.