Just Passin' Thru: A Vintage Store, the Appalachian Trail, and a Cast of Unforgettable Characters

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Menasha Ridge Press, Dec 1, 2009 - Travel - 272 pages
3 Reviews
Like a well-crafted stage play, Just Passin' Thru delivers one suspenseful scene after another. But in this historic setting — a store on the Appalachian Trail called Mountain Crossings — the characters who show up are no fictional creations. They are the real-life stars of the author’s new life as a backpack-purging, canteen-selling, hostel-running, bandage-taping, lost-child finding, argument-settling, romance-fixing, chili-making man of many faces. Like any good drama, there are the good guys (and gals) and the weirdos, too. Some show up once (and that’s enough), and some appear again and again. Some are friends, and some dangerous. But all are united by two things: the author’s story-capturing talent, and whatever it is that lures them to attempt (or conquer) a 2,200-mile path that climbs and plummets from Georgia to Maine.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - MarkPSadler - LibraryThing

Not only have I also 'passed thru' Mountain Crossings (2001) I also had the privilege of reading some of the advanced stories as Porter was writing them. Now that I see the finished product I am happy ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - billsearth - LibraryThing

This is a memoir by a hiking store owner, of the interesting people he met and came to know. It is centered on the thru-hikers he met at his store on the southern end of the Appalachian Trail. Some of ... Read full review


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About the Author

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About the author (2009)

Ever since starting his lawn-mowing business at age 10, author Winton Porter has found it hard to stay indoors. At 21 he opened his own B. Bumblefoot and Co., producing hiking sticks for retailers throughout the U.S. southeast. And for years he tried the corporate route—selling gear and managing operations at such retailers as REI in Chicago, Salt Lake City, and Atlanta. In 2001, at age 35, he ransacked his 401k and bought the venerable Mountain Crossings store, a hiker’s mecca deep in the Georgia woods near the southern end of the Appalachian Trail. It’s a blissful match for the lifelong outdoorsman and natural-born storyteller. Now called the Guru of the Appalachian Trail, Winton is famous for his “shakedowns” to help weary hikers lighten their loads. When he’s not busy selling boots and shipping hikers’ boxes home, he’s writing about the zany adventurers that populate the trail and his store. Winton’s memory for dialogue, eye for detail, compassion for those in trouble, and gift for humor come together in the 27 chapters that make up his first book.

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