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an inspirATional trail. your inspirATional stories.

The contest has ended, but the story continues!​

Tag your posts on social media with #myATstory to share your personal adventures on the Trail.

​Make Your Story Known

myATstory Photo

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.

From October ​4, 2016, to January 31, 2017, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) will be accepting submissions for our myATstory Contest. We will select 20 amazing stories to feature on this website.

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, a song, a sculpture, a quilt — let your creativity run wild!


myATstory Photos

Categories

  • Audio - songs, podcasts, recorded interviews, etc.
  • Video - films, documentaries, video diaries, etc.
  • Written - essays, poetry, journals/blogs, etc.
  • Physical Works - sculptures, woodwork, pottery, etc.
  • Photos, Paintings, and Drawings - photography collections, sketch portfolios, etc.

Tips

  • Video/audio submissions should be no more than five minutes long
  • Written submissions should be no longer than 2,000 words
  • Only one submission per ​person

Submission Categories - audio, imagery, written, video, physical works

​You Could Win

In addition to the Finalist Prizes, one Grand Prize winner will receive:

  • An Osprey Volt 60 or Viva 50 backpack
  • A weekend for two at the historic Town’s Inn in Harper’s Ferry, WV
  • A behind-the-scenes tour of ATC headquarters
  • A guided Appalachian Trail hike with ATC staff members
  • A feature of their story on the ATC website

Four Finalists will receive:

  • An Osprey Daylight Plus backpack filled with an ATC Edition ENO DoubleNest Hammock, a set of Point6 A.T. Light Crew Merino Wool Performance Socks, and more!
  • A feature of their story on the ATC website

20 Top Storytellers will receive:

  • An Osprey Daylite Plus backpack
  • A feature of their story on the ATC website

ATC, A.T. and Harpers Ferry

Osprey, Eno, and Point6 Prizes

​Grand Prize Round Results

Andrew's Story was the Round 3 Winner

Andrew's Story

Total Votes: 2140


myATstory Round 2 Winner

Ellen's Story

Total Votes: 1956


myATstory Round 4 Winner

Sarah's Story

Total Votes: 378


myATstory Round 1 Winner

Frank's Story

Total Votes: 50


Round ​Four Results

Sarah's Story

Sarah's Story

Total Votes: 442


Jonah's Story

Jonah's Story

Total Votes: 177


Nathan's Story

Nathan's Story

Total Votes: 146


Tosha's Story

Tosha's Story

Total Votes: 89


Françoise's Story

Françoise's Story

Total Votes: 57


​Round ​Three Results

Andrew's Story was the Round 3 Winner

Andrew's Story

Total Votes: 599


Paul's Story

Paul's Story

Total Votes: 542


Corky's Story

Corky's Story

Total Votes: 217


George's Story

George's Story

Total Votes: 42


Krystian's Story

Krystian's Story

Total Votes: 31


​Round ​Two Results

Ellen's Story was chosen as the winning story for Round 2

Ellen's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​816


Ryan's Story

Ryan's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​582


Craig's Story

Craig's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​326


Roger's Story

Roger's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​1​​44


Aaron's Story

Aaron's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​52


​Round ​One Results

Frank's Story

Frank's Story

Total votes: ​​​​1​​​​95


Terry's Story

Terry's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​1​​72


Drew's Story

Drew's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​​95


Laura's Story

Laura's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​46


Mark's Story

Mark's Story

Total votes: ​​​​​​3​7


Timeline

The contest is broken down into four rounds, with one finalist chosen by popular vote during each round. Stories will be included in a particular round based on the date of submission (see below), but all stories must be submitted between October ​4, 2016, and January 31, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. EST.


After round four is complete, you will choose a Grand Prize winner from the four Finalists.

Round 1 Timeline

Round 1

Submissions
COMPLETE
Voting
​COMPLETE

Round 2 Timeline

Round 2

Submissions
COMPLETE
Voting
COMPLETE

Round 3 Timeline

Round 3

Submissions
COMPLETE
Voting
COMPLETE

Round 4 Timeline

Round 4

Submissions
COMPLETE
Voting
COMPLETE


Grand Prize Timeline

Grand Prize

Voting
Complete!
Winner
Complete!




Stay ​Up to Date

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




Official Rules

Submissions

  • 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 dates of October ​4, 2016, and January 31, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. Entries received before or after these dates 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.

Timeline

  • Twenty stories will be selected by ATC staff and featured on our storytelling page, with five stories selected ​during each round.
  • All stories, regardless of category, must be received between October ​4, 2016, and January 31, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. EST.
  • Stories will be selected for each round of voting between the following dates:
    • Round 1: Submissions received from Oct. 4 - 31, 2016
    • Round 2: Submissions received ​from ​Nov. 1 - 28, 2016
    • Round 3: Submissions received from Nov. 29 - Jan. 2, 2017
    • Round 4: Submissions received from Jan. 3 - 31, 2017
  • Voting periods will commence on the following dates:
    • Round 1: Nov. 7 - 20, 2016
      • Winner will be announced during week of Nov. 21, 2016
    • Round 2: Dec​. 5 - 18, 2016
      • Winner will be announced during week of Dec. 19, 2016
    • Round 3: Jan​. 9 - 22, 2017
      • Winner will be announced during week of Jan. 23, 2017
    • Round 4: Feb​. 6 - 19, 2017
      • Winner will be announced during week of Feb. 20, 2017
    • Grand Prize Vote: Feb. 27 - Mar. 26, 2017
      • Winner will be announced on Mar. 30, 2017
  • Winners will be notified via the email addresses provided during entry.
  • Storyteller and Finalist Prizes will be mailed within 4-6 weeks after announcing the finalist for each voting period. The additional prizes for the Grand Prize winner will be mailed within 4-6 weeks after the final round of voting has concluded.
  • The two-night stay, behind-the-scenes tour of ATC headquarters, and guided hike with an ATC staff member/members awarded to the Grand Prize winner will be arranged based on the availability of the Grand Prize winner and ATC staff. These accommodations will be arranged via phone or email after the Grand Prize winner has been announced. Neither transportation nor transportation costs to and/or from Harpers Ferry, WV will be provided by the ATC.

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.

Should your story be selected, your first and last name will 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, ENO, Point6, or any other retail or promotional Partners.