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Peter Conti: A Healing Odyssey on the Appalachian Trail

Peter Conti: A Healing Odyssey on the Appalachian Trail
Photo Credit: Peter Conti

In the picturesque town of Annapolis, Maryland, resides an extraordinary individual whose journey is not just an adventure but an inspiring testament to resilience and determination. Peter Conti, the author of “Only When I Step On It: One Man’s Inspiring Journey to Hike The Appalachian Trail Alone,” has woven a narrative that transcends the boundaries of a typical adventure memoir. This poignant story takes readers through the highs and lows of Peter’s life-altering quest on the Appalachian Trail, offering a glimpse into the human spirit’s capacity to overcome the seemingly impossible.

A Journey Through Pain and Redemption

Peter Conti’s tale is one of triumph over adversity. Following a life-altering injury that plunged him into a world of chronic pain, Peter faced a crossroads. Enduring constant agony and grappling with the limitations of conventional treatments, he made a daring decision. With the audacious goal of hiking 2,000 miles on the Appalachian Trail to heal his leg, Peter embarked on a transformative odyssey. His journey not only became a physical challenge but also a profound exploration of the mind and soul.

A Healing Odyssey Begins

The genesis of Peter’s odyssey occurred 23 months after his accident, a period marked by relentless pain and countless medical consultations. Faced with the daunting prospect of a life overshadowed by suffering, Peter had a moment of revelation: the Appalachian Trail held the key to his recovery. With a mere three weeks of preparation, he commenced his expedition, venturing into the wilderness with a novice’s backpack and an unwavering determination to rewrite the narrative of his life.

Chronicling the Adventure

“Only When I Step On It” unfolds as a chronicle of Peter’s trek, illuminating the darkest moments of breakdowns and the brightest episodes of humor-laden escapades. Chronicling his struggles with chronic pain, anxiety, and depression, the narrative becomes a poignant companion for readers who join him, step by step, on the Appalachian Trail. The story transcends the bounds of a traditional adventure memoir, seamlessly weaving together elements of trauma recovery, humor, and the sheer beauty of the natural world.

Endorsement from a Fellow Hiker

The forward of the book, written by Gail “Dr Fix-it” Hinshaw, offers a glimpse into the profound impact of Peter’s journey. Comparing it to renowned works like Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild” and Bill Bryson’s “A Walk in The Woods,” Hinshaw acknowledges the uniqueness of Peter’s narrative. The endorsement highlights the book’s depth, its exploration of trauma recovery, and its ability to captivate readers much like a gripping novel.

Transformative Impact on Readers

With over 1,400 reviews on Amazon, readers have attested to the transformative power of Peter Conti’s story. From instilling hope and perseverance to offering a therapeutic escape, the book has resonated with individuals facing their own challenges. Testimonials reveal the profound impact on readers, inspiring them to take smaller steps towards their dreams and providing solace to those navigating pain and recovery.


Only When I Step On It” is more than a memoir; it is a journey of healing, resilience, and self-discovery. Peter Conti’s odyssey on the Appalachian Trail transcends the physical act of hiking; it becomes a metaphor for overcoming life’s challenges. In the end, the book stands as a beacon of hope for those grappling with adversity, showing that even the most arduous paths can lead to transformation and renewal. As readers traverse the pages, they find not just a story of hiking but a testament to the indomitable spirit’s capacity to triumph over the most formidable odds.

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