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83-year-old man becomes oldest person to hike Appalachian Trail

APTOPIX Appalachian Trail-Oldest Hiker
Posted at 1:22 PM, Nov 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-08 13:32:28-05

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — An 83-year-old hiker who is known as “Nimblewill Nomad” has become the oldest person to complete the Appalachian Trail.

M.J. Eberhart of Flagg Mountain, Alabama, hiked into the records books Sunday.

Appalachian Trail-Oldest Hiker
M.J. Eberhart, 83, pauses by a survey marker on the Appalachian Trail, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, in Gorham, New Hampshire. Eberhart, who goes by the trail name of Nimblewill Nomad, has hiked all of the country's major long-distance trails. He has also walked the length of Route 66 from Illinois and California. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

An official with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy confirmed Eberhart’s feat to The Associated Press.

Eberhart hiked the trail in out-of-order sections for optimal weather and completed the journey in western Massachusetts.

Appalachian Trail-Oldest Hiker
M.J. Eberhart, 83, carefully hikes the Appalachian Trail, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, in Gorham, New Hampshire. Eberhart, who goes by the trail name of Nimblewill Nomad, recently set the record for being the the oldest person to hike the entire 2,193-mile Appalachian Trail. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Joining him at the finish was Dale Sanders, who is the former record holder at age 82 in 2017. He told the AP that he’s happy for Eberhart and he said records are meant to be broken.

Eberhart was toasted with Champagne at journey's end.

While has become the oldest person to hike the Appalachian Trail, a 5-year-old boy named Harvey Sutton became one of the youngest to do it this year. He completed the trail in August with his parents.

Eberhart told the AP that he actually ran into Sutton on the trail, adding that the boy “impressed the dickens” out of him.

The Appalachian Trail covers over 2,000 miles from Georgia to Maine.

APTOPIX Appalachian Trail-Oldest Hiker
M.J. Eberhart, 83, carefully makes his way through large rocks while descending Mount Hayes on the Appalachian Trail, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, in Gorham, New Hampshire. Eberhart, who goes by the trail name of Nimblewill Nomad, is the oldest person to hike the entire 2,193-mile Appalachian Trail. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)