If you have thru-hiked over the decades, you may be familiar with the Boots McFarland series of backpacking comics by Geolyn Carvin.
The comics encapsulate some quirkier aspects of the long-distance hiking experience – the insects, the heat, coming into “civilization,” and some inside jokes you only understand after schlepping a pack for hundreds of miles with other people inside this equally quirky community.
The comics don’t delve into politics or offer sharp commentary about the topics that impact the outdoors. Instead, I think of the comics as the hiking equivalent of whatever your comfort food of choice may be on a cold, snowy day when you can’t get outside easily. (Mine? “Greens and beans soup” from my late Grandma. Of course.)
They are enjoyable, give a knowing smile, and bring back memories from previous long hikes with a large community such as the Pacific Crest Trail.
In 2018, I looked at an earlier collection of Geolyn’s comics and had thoughts similar to those above.
Well, a new collection was released and is available in print and eBook forms.
As the name implies, Boots McFarland -20 Years on the Trail! looks at some of the earlier comics, and more recent ones, and includes journal entries from the author’s journeys on long trails.
As before, if you have been fortunate enough to trek on a longer trail, you’ll also smile and reminisce over your (probably equally quirky) experiences.
Grab a copy, page through it, and perhaps enjoy some hiking comfort food you’ll probably savor.
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book at no charge.