Was This Swedish Immigrant the First Continental Divide Thru-Hiker?

Recently we stumbled across this great article from Backpacker.com.  It's worth a read.

Image and excerpt courtesy of Backpacker.com

Excerpt:  Before applying paint, Peter Parsons traced the letters on the back of his canvas rucksack. He wanted the 3-inch-high text to be perfect—no botched lines made by an excited hand. Parsons painted neatly inside the lines, making block letters that read: HEADING “NORTH”—MEXICO TO CANADA. Parsons intended to hike the Continental Divide.

On a one-cent postcard, he’d just written his best friend, “I’m raring to be on the trail again.” Of course, he used the word “trail” loosely. The year was 1924, and there was no established trail leading from where he was starting to where he was going.



  • This Guy was AMAZING !

    Peter Mogish
  • he sounds like a real adventurer, good article

    Liz Kilcher
  • this is really awesome. i love reading about the old days. people were so much wiser and strong

    Donna L Holder
  • As far as I know, back then hardly anyone did this kind of thing “just because”. Now long distance hiking has become very popular. It makes me wonder which of today’s oddballs will be considered trendsetters in the future.

    Nathan Armer
  • interesting

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