CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – ‘Explore the Extra Mile’ with National Geographic Adventurer of the Year, Jennifer Pharr Davis, May 29, 5 p.m., at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center. The opportunity to interact with Davis is sponsored by the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), the City of Cape Girardeau Parks & Recreation Department, Missouri Running Co., and the Cape Road Runners.
Davis’ visit to Cape Girardeau will begin with a special meet and greet at Missouri Running Co. from 4:15 to 4:45 p.m. A book signing event will follow at the nature center, in Cape County Park North, beginning at 5 p.m., with a speaking presentation beginning at 6 p.m. Davis will lead a 2-3 mile trail hike at the nature center beginning at 7 p.m. The event is free and all ages are welcome. Registration is requested in advance as space is limited. To register or for more information, visit www.cityofcape.org/extramile.
“We’re grateful for the partnerships that have made this event possible,” said Sara Turner, manager of the nature center. “It’s a privilege to host someone like Jennifer, who set the women’s fastest known time record on the Appalachian Trail, and truly strives to experience nature and be an example to others.”
Davis is an American long-distance hiker, author of Becoming Odyssa and Called Again, a speaker, a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year, and an ambassador for the American Hiking Society. She has hiked more than twelve thousand miles on six different continents. Davis lives in Asheville, N.C., with her husband, Brew, and their two children.
The first time Davis thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2008, she set the women’s fastest known time (FKT) record, completing the trail in 58 days. On July 31, 2011, Davis set the FKT record on the Appalachian Trail, completing the trail in just 46 days, 11 hours and 20 minutes—a feat that takes most hikers six months. Hiking an average of 47 miles per day, Davis was the first woman to claim the overall title on the Appalachian Trail.
Davis was named the National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2012 for her hiking achievements and she founded Blue Ridge Hiking Company in 2008 as a guiding service that strives “to make the wilderness accessible and enjoyable” for hikers of all ages, genders, and ability levels. Most recently, Davis completed the 1,175-mile Mountains-to-Sea hike in North Carolina with her husband and two children.
Since her thru-hike record, which she held for four years, Davis has set out on a new quest—the quest to find out what exactly defines endurance, where it comes from, if gender plays a role, and how it can be harnessed. Her book, “The Pursuit of Endurance: Harnessing the Record-Breaking Power of Strength and Resilience,” aims to answer those questions, through interviews with renowned endurance athletes, fellow record setters, an exercise physiology expert, and through her own accomplishments in the world of endurance hiking, backpacking, and trail running.