Vancouver Island Trail Newsletter
A recent publication from our Founder Constantine, about the 2020 VIT thru-hike becoming the 4th and 5th people to accomplish this. A tale of him and his partner Magpie's journey on the Vancouver Island Trail. Giving their legs to this new trail system as it finds its own!
January 4th, 2021
TELL YOUR TRAIL EP.1
We are so excited to bring you the first episode in our (5) episode installment of interviews before hiking season 2021. Before the hiking season that lets us accomplish a now 6 year long goal with the final 8,000 miles of more than 20,000 hiked this year. We begin where it all began on the Appalachian Trail. Let us look back so we can all look forward
January 11th, 2021
TELL YOUR TRAIL EP.2
Episode 2! This one is a big one! We cover relationships, time management, the Continental Divide Trail and finishing the Big 3. But more importantly how the distance between Ryan and Constantine was becoming too much for us, and even though they were always one in the same we needed to merge them completely. A life of thru-hiking is not all sunshine and rainbows, it takes daily sacrifice!
January 18th, 2021
TELL YOUR TRAIL EP.3
Episode 3! This episode covers the year of 2019. The year that ElevenSkys was an inkling in our founders head, as it began to take shape, as the hiking lifestyle began to become a life itself. We talk the Pinhoti Trail, Pacific Northwest Trail, The Ice Age Trail, The Arizona Trail. Just as importantly we talk gear! Gear is unique to each hiker, even as a gear company we are hesitant to suggest gear. Preference is preference find what works for you, if it is our gear, great! If not, also great! Find what works for your hike. Just, hike!
Adventure Bound Ep.78
January 19th, 2021
In this interview our Founder Constantine and Rob talk all things trail related. Begin at the beginning, where Rob asks questions that we have not thought of for years now, questions that we had when we began hiking, but we have internalized and they have become such a part of us along the way, we had to stop and think to answer.
TELL YOUR TRAIL EP.4
January 25th, 2021
In this episode we cover the year of 2020. The year that was almost no year at all, yet also was our defining year. The year of the Natchez Trace Trail (Speed Record) Great Divide Trail, the year of the Vancouver Island Trail, the year of the Sea-to-Sky Trail (Speed Record). More importantly though the year of love, the year of compassion, the year of change, the year of growth. We talk Magpie, hypothermia, the Pain Well Mentality, pace, record weather, routing trail, and so much more! We also give a sneak peak into 2021, completing a 6 year long goal that grew along the journey!
Local Life Magazine
January 28th, 2021
In this interview, our founder Constantine, tries to distill the world of thru-hiking down into a few paragraphs. A feat impossible for any hiker, doubly so for our founder who uses an essay where only a single word is sometimes needed. The main concept however rings true for most any hiker, the heart of where many thru-hikers find their passion, yes in the trail and yes in the miles, but truly within the community. The community of the others on trail, called trail family, is where the true heart of hiking lies for our founder, and why it seems to not only be a year after year occurrence, but a life. He also gives a few "day hikes" and longer hike suggestions for anyone in the southeast. We know suggestions for trails underneath thousands of miles long, preposterous! Yet, even though we are a company hyper-focused in this niche, it does not mean that a few miles, a few steps, any amount of time spent moving in nature isn't the greatest happiness.
Tell Your Trail Ep.5
February 1st, 2021
In this episode we begin. Pre-recorded to be released on the same date that we were having our very first steps on the Florida Trail, our very first steps of hiking season 2021. We begin the year that is will be completed. A goal not that was with us in the beginning but a goal that was built with us through each step, each sweat soaked summit, and each mile. A goal 6 years in the making. A goal that started way back on the Appalachian Trail in 2016, and only would take close to 20,000 more miles to complete, would take just a adventure and a hike and make it a life. We will be completing all 11 National Scenic Trails this year, the youngest in history to do so, and the only in history to do all as a thru-hike. This year is going to be a big one, come with us as we talk prep, jitters, and what everything ultimately is accomplished through: mindset.
February 13th, 2021
In this interview our founder, talks about love on trail. Seen from the perspective of his partner, the author of this article focused in on the love story from her point of view. About how hikers meet on trail, about how hikers interact on trail, about love budding, and love growing. Much was lost in the edit about the initial interaction between hikers on trail and the responsibility that every hiker has as a relationship begins to take shape, but that is more of the story that we will be telling on our own platform, instead for now, enjoy the story of love between two hikers.
Tell Your Trail Ep. 6
February 21st, 2021
In this episode, it is our first live episode from trail! About ~300 miles into the Florida Trail and about ~300 miles into an overall 8,000 mile year, our founder checks in. Talks of the swamps and the record saturation of Florida in this hiking season, talks of sweaty clothes that were more oil than fabric, talks of ants attacking his tent, talks of the body getting used to high mile days again and holding consistent 30+ miles each day every day. Other matters that are touched on are; finding that mentality to go further and go harder, laundry heaven, food shortage, and of course many laughs at the absurdities that you find yourself in on any long thru-hike.
Tell Your Trail Ep.7
March 7th, 2021
In this episode we check in with Constantine again. He is now over ~700 miles into the Florida Trail and only has about 10 more days left to finish up the first thru-hike of the year. You can begin to notice as his body and mind start to transition deeply into the trail mentality. Legs of iron that no longer feel the miles with every step but instead with every milestone, he talks on how the body at this point on a trail begins to work itself out each day and how it continues to grow and build into harder miles. He talks of the balance between gear companies and their "ultralight philosophy" because it sells and how while great, some companies are beginning to go to far down that line. Tune in for stories about swimming rivers, cold rain, blistering hear, and everything that only Florida can provide, oh yea and more swamps!
Tell Your Trail Ep.8
March 16th, 2021
In this episode, Constantine and his hiking friend Hardy are done! The first thru-hike of the year 2021 is done. 1108 miles, 41 days, and countless stories. We catch up as he is in transit to his next hike having only finished a day prior. Oh, and what a finish it was, "easy" miles until the end, but even after completing the Florida Trail somehow our founder ended up all the way in Alabama? Only a story that Florida can provide. We catch up and here about the mental and physical fatigue that begins to accumulate after hard miles on a trail, how to ignore this (it will catch up eventually but this year there is no time for tired), and oh the many stories of wet mornings and wetter days. One more time from Florida, until we catch up with him next time in the frigid Northeast!
David on Earth
March 29th, 2021
Join our founder, Constantine, and other hiker enthusiast David as they chat all things hiking. Chatting about the embrace of the forest and the hug of the forest that only out east hiking can provide, as they joke about the "hiking bug", and many other stories. We also hear background on how along the journey for Constantine this walking from point A to point B, or thru-hiking, became a practical life that could be lived year after year. The sacrifices and the mentality that allowed this hiker to find a life on trail and off. David has a wonderful personality and quick to a smile, so of course you know these two instantly got along. Great chat with another hiker that seems to have found a connection not only to the trail, on the trail, but a connection through the trail, and all around the trail. It sounds complicated but its not; simply it means, connection.
Tell Your Trail Ep.9
April 14th, 2021
In this episode we catch up with Constantine more than half way through his Potomac Heritage Trail Thru-Hike. You can hear his legs itching for miles in the background of this audio and video as we here of a potential Speed Record in the works! This video was released (2) weeks or so after being recorded due to our partners over at Tell Your Trail, making many big life changes, again congratulations! Listen in as another trail is coming to an end in less than a few days and how the miles have increased to 35+ everyday with sprinkles of 40 miler days in the mix. The mentality is still strong as we send Constantine off to finish this one up!
Tell Your Trail Ep.10
April 14th, 2021
Back to real time. Released after completion of both the Potomac Heritage Trail and the New England Trail. Speed record complete on the PHT, capping off the last day with a 48 miler day for Constantine. Then a few days of travel in between and instantly on to the next trail, the New England Trail. We check in with him after running this trail out in 7 days, and finishing on the early morning of the 8th. Hard miles needed a harder mind. Yet, we talk on as the miles piled up having to dig deeper for the same energy that was their more readily available at the beginning of hiking season, and why this was occurring. It is a beautiful thing to test mind and body cohesion for months on end of high mileage days, but we here from Constantine, that while being a passion is not his true passion of hiking...again it comes back to community and we hear this in his voice as he begins his travels to the biggest trail yet, the North Country Trail at ~4600 miles, its going to be a long ride! Thankfully, there will be company!