Alaska-bound 20-somethings with backpacks—heard that one before, right? But, this is different than Alexander Supertramp’s Into the Wild adventure. Erin McKittrick and her husband Hig (Bretwood Higman) weren’t just getting away from it all. They traveled 4,000 miles from Seattle, Wash., to Alaska’s first Aleutian Island to raise environmental awareness (teaching others and learning themselves) about dwindling salmon populations, rapid deforestation, melting glaciers, etc.
Traveling slowly, they became intimate with people and pines alike, which didn’t blur by outside car windows. As such, they documented their expedition in A Long Trek Home: 4,000 Miles by Boot, Raft and Ski. Hig took photos and McKittrick wrote a beautiful tale, at times provoking a laugh or even making the reader cling to his seat. However, their mission didn’t stop there; they continue to promote environmentalism with their nonprofit, Ground Truth Trekking. Today, they’ll read from their book and show-and-tell pictures and gear they used on the trek.