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Adventures from the People’s Trail

​Share Your A.T. Adventure


The Appalachian Trail (A.T.) is one of the most inspiring endeavors in American history. But the aspect that truly makes the A.T. special is the community of hikers and supporters that keep the spirit of the Trail alive through their adventures, their generosity, and perhaps most of all ,
their stories.

We want to know how the A.T. has impacted your life.

Starting on November 1, 2017, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) will be accepting submissions for our myATstory Contest.

We know that great stories can be told in a wide variety of ways, so we are leaving the type of creation up to you. Whether it be a video, an essay, a painting, a podcast, or a song — let your creativity run wild!



  • Photo Contest - photos, sketches, paintings, etc.
  • Essay Contest - includes essays, poetry, journals/blogs, etc.
  • Audio Contest - includes songs, podcasts, recorded interviews, etc.
  • Video Contest - includes films, documentaries, video diaries, etc.


  • Video/audio submissions should be no more than seven minutes long
  • Written submissions should be no longer than 10,000 characters (approximately 1,900 words)
  • Only one submission per person


Movie Contest Polaroid

Video Contest

The contest ended April 23, 2018.

1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners were announced on May 15, 2018.


Click Here to View the Full Results

Audio Contest Winners

1st Place
Tim Potter
"Deep Within the Green"

2nd Place
Luke Hilliard
"4 By 40 Days"

3rd Place
Grace Kendall
"Let It Work"

Photo Contest Winners

1st Place
Shawn Osgood
"Step Into The Unknown"

Shaw Osgood "Step Into the Unknown"

2nd Place
Chelsea Fisher
"Tears Of The Trail"

Chelsea Fisher "Tears of the Trail"

3rd Place
Kirsten Fraude
"Sunset On Mt. Lafayette"

Kirsten Fraude "Sunset On Mt. Lafayette"

Essay Contest Winners

1st Place
Harry Deitz
"The Sun Rises on a New Day, A New Journey on the A.T."
Click here to read Harry's story!
Harry_D_The Sun Rises on a New Day, A New Journey on the AT POLAROID.jpg

2nd Place
Karen Rutter
"Unbreakable Bond"
Click here to read Karen's Story!
Unbreakable Bond By Karen Rutter

3rd Place
Tracy Holemeyer
"Returning to the beat of my heart on the A.T."
Click here to read Tracy's Story!
Tracy Holemeyer - Returning to the Beat of My Heart on the AT POLAROID

Stay ​Up to Date

Know when to vote! Sign up for an email reminder when the next round of voting begins​.

Official Rules


  • All contestants must be 18 or older or have written proof of parent/guardian consent.
  • All stories, regardless of category, must be submitted between the announcement of the Contest on November 1, 2017 and 11:59 p.m. EST on the dates specified on each Contest category’s submission page. Entries received before or after these dates and times will not be considered.
  • While submissions do not have to be about thru-hikes or hiking in general, all stories must relate directly to an experience on or with the Appalachian Trail.
  • Any submitted stories, regardless of category, should be credited to only one individual — multiple prizes will not be awarded to submissions with more than one creator.
  • Contestants can submit only one story, regardless of category. Multiple submissions may result in your disqualification from the contest.
  • Any stories that actively promote actions conflicting with the ATC’s Leave No Trace™ (LNT) principles will be disqualified. For more information about LNT principles, visit appalachiantrail.org/LNT.
  • Any stories that promote illegal activity will be disqualified.
  • Any stories containing nudity, inappropriate activities, or disparaging behavior/images will be disqualified.


  • Each category in the myATstory Contest will have a total of three winners — first, second, and third place — which will be decided by the number of votes received at the end of each contest’s voting period.
  • All stories, regardless of category, must be received between November 1, 2017, and 11:59 p.m. EST on the dates specified for each contest:
    • myATstory Photo Contest:
      • Submissions will be accepted from Nov. 1 – Dec. 11, 2017
      • Voting will take place from Dec. 12, 2017 – Jan. 2, 2018
      • Winner Announced: Jan. 3, 2018
    • myATstory Essay Contest:
      • Submissions will be accepted from Nov. 1, 2017 – Jan. 21, 2018
      • Voting will take place from Jan. 22, 2018 – Feb. 12, 2018
      • Winner Announced: Feb. 13, 2018
    • myATstory Audio Contest
      • Submissions will be accepted from Nov. 1, 2017 – Mar. 5, 2018
      • Voting will take place from Mar. 6, 2018 – Mar. 26, 2018
      • Winner Announced: Mar. 27, 2018
    • myATstory Video Contest:
      • Submissions will be accepted from Nov. 1, 2017 – April 16, 2018
      • Voting will take place from Apr. 17, 2018 – May 7, 2018
      • Winner Announced: May 8, 2018
  • Winners will be notified via the email addresses provided during entry.
  • All prizes will be mailed within 4-6 weeks after announcing the winners for each contest.

Terms & Conditions

Every entrant agrees to be bound by these Official Rules. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC), Administrator, Judge, and retail or promotional Partners involved with this Promotion assume no liability or responsibility for the prizes once they have been awarded to the winning entrants. Additionally, the winner shall hold harmless the ATC, Administrator, Judge, and all retail or promotional Partners involved with this promotion and waive any and all claims of liability arising directly or indirectly from participation in the Promotion or use of any prizes awarded.
The ATC reserves the right, in their sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, or suspend this Promotion should one or more computer viruses, malicious computer code, unauthorized human intervention, or other causes beyond their control, corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness or proper conduct of the Promotion. Any entrant who submits a virus, malicious code, malware or otherwise attempts to interfere, impede or disrupt ATC’s website will be disqualified. The ATC reserves the right to make changes ​to the Official Rules of the contest, including substitution of a prize or a portion of the prize of equivalent value, which will become effective upon announcement, without the requirement to notify entrants or others. Such a change shall occur only on the Official Rules posted on the Promotion entry web site. The ATC, Administrator, Judge, and retail ​or promotional Partners are not responsible for typographical or other errors in the printing, the offering, or the administration of the Promotion, or in the announcement of a prize. The ATC reserves the right to ​disqualify and/or remove any work submitted to the competition at any time. All prizes are final: no prize may be exchanged for a different prize or for equivalent cash value.

Any material submitted to this contest can be used by the ATC in future promotional materials. By submitting to this contest via any form of media — physical, digital, or otherwise — you are agreeing to this stipulation.

By entering this contest, you agree to allow your first and last name to be featured on the myATstory Contest website and, potentially, other ATC-operated websites or social media accounts. Your email address and any other personal information will be kept confidential by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and will not be shared with external parties.
The ATC shall not be liable for any damages, whether direct, indirect, incidental, special or consequential, relating to the participation or inability to participate in this Promotion. Some states do not allow the limitation or exclusion of liability for incidental or consequential damages; consequently, the above may not apply to you.
This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed, administered by or associated with Osprey, Point6, or any other retail or promotional Partners.