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PostPosted: Tue Sep 14, 2010 12:25 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 5:21 am
Posts: 437, Corbin, KY
September 13, 2010
Sheltowee Trace hiker recalls experience

The Times-Tribune

CORBIN — By Becky Manley Killian / Managing Editor

Three faded Polaroid photos, a plaque and stories about helpful strangers are mementoes of Tony Daniel’s journey along the Sheltowee Trace Trail.

The trek was made in 1979 when the Sheltowee was in its infancy and Daniels, the trail’s first known hiker to walk from end-to-end, was 17.

Daniels, now 47 and a resident of Oak Hill, West Va., shared his faded photos, passed around the plaque he got from the state and told stories about his hiking adventures Saturday at the Sheltowee Trace Association’s annual conference, hosted by Sheltowee Trace Outfitters.

Conference attendees were told there are only about 15 known Sheltowee Trace through-hikers.

It took 28 days for Daniels to travel from Portsmouth, Ohio, to Pickett State Park in Tennessee. For 21 of those days, Daniels said he hiked alone. He was joined by his father, Paul, for one week.

Daniels, who estimates he walked about 280 to 350 miles, said he initially aimed to hike the Appalachian Trail but his father encouraged him to walk across Kentucky. Before his Sheltowee hike, Daniels said his longest hike had likely been less than 50 miles.

The northern trailhead for the Sheltowee has since moved, but Daniels began his walk along a trail that no longer exists: the Jenny Wiley Trail.

Daniels told conference attendees that when he began his hike, he expected to cross a bridge over the Ohio but there was none, so he had to ferry to a landing that took him two miles out of his way. Then it began to rain.

The trail was still rough and often required “bushwhacking,â€

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