Jennifer Pharr Davis

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Jennifer Pharr Davis
Born (1983-05-25) May 25, 1983 (age 35)
Hendersonville, North Carolina
Nationality United States of America
Other names "Odyssa"
Occupation Author, Speaker, Hiker, Founder and Owner of Blue Ridge Hiking Company (Asheville, NC)
Known for Long Distance Hiking

Jennifer Pharr Davis is a long distance hiker from the United States of America, author, speaker, National Geographic Adventurer of the Year, and Ambassador for the American Hiking Society.[1] She has hiked over 12,000 miles on six different continents, including thru-hikes on the Pacific Crest Trail, the Appalachian Trail (three times), the Colorado Trail, the Long Trail in Vermont, the Bibbulmun Track in Australia, and numerous trails in Europe and South America (e.g., the Tour du Mont Blanc, West Highland Way, Laugavegur, GR 11 (Spain), GR 20, and the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Cotahuasi Canyon and the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu).

In 2011, Pharr Davis set the unofficial record for the fastest thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail with a time of 46 days, 11 hours, and 20 minutes, an average of 47 miles (76 km) a day, a record she held for four years until July 12, 2015, when Scott Jurek finished 3 hours and 12 minutes faster.[2][3][4] Pharr Davis lives in Asheville, North Carolina with her husband Brew and their daughter Charley.[3] She attended the Asheville School.[5] She first hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2005 after graduating from Samford University.[2] To prepare for her initial hike, she attended a class taught by Warren Doyle at the Appalachian Trail Institute. In 2008, she set the record for the fastest Appalachian Trail hike by a woman, in 57 days and 8 hours, an average of 38 miles (61 km) per day. She had previously set the Long Trail trail record in 7 days and 15 hours in 2007. She also established the fastest known time on the Bibbulmun Track in Western Australia in 2008.[2]

Pharr Davis has written two guidebooks about hiking in the Charlotte, North Carolina area, and one about hiking near Asheville, North Carolina. She has also written two memoirs- 2010's Becoming Odyssa, about her 2005 Appalachian Trail thru-hike,[3][6] and 2013's Called Again, about her record setting A.T. hike.

As a member of the National Speakers Association, Pharr Davis has shared her trail lessons hundreds of time all across the country, including presentations to Fortune 500 companies, trade organizations, colleges and universities, K-12 schools, libraries, festivals, churches, and other non-profits. She has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, NPR's Talk of the Nation, and The Early Show on CBS. Her articles have appeared in print and online editions for Outside Magazine, Trail Runner, and Blue Ridge Outdoors, and she has contributed to articles in Men's Journal, National Geographic Adventure, and Backpacker.

In 2008, Pharr Davis founded Blue Ridge Hiking Company, with the belief that "the trail is there for everyone at every phase of life" and with the goal of getting people- especially women and children- outdoors on their own terms. The company leads half-day, full day and overnight trips in the Blue Ridge Mountains surrounding Asheville.[7] Pharr Davis is an ambassador for the American Hiking Society, and she was featured as one of National Geographic's Adventurers of the Year in 2012. She was also named Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine's Person of the Year in 2008, and her record-setting A.T. hike in 2011 was named "Performance of the Year" by Ultrarunning Magazine. She has hiked with her husband and young daughter in all fifty states and she is currently hiking the Continental Divide Trail in sections through the Rocky Mountains.[8][9][10]


  1. ^ Mulvihill, Keith (23 July 2011). "Speed Hiker Thrives on Natural Rhythms of the Appalachian Trail". The New York Times. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  2. ^ a b c Collins, Jeffrey. "Woman sets Appalachian Trail fastest-hike record". Associated Press. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  3. ^ a b c Horan, Jack (2 August 2011). "One step at a time for 46 days, 2,181 miles". The Charlotte Observer. Archived from the original on 18 September 2012. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  4. ^ "Woman hikes Appalachian in 46 days". United Press International. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  5. ^
  6. ^ Thomson, Candus. "Woman breaks Appalachian Trail speed record". Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  7. ^ "Blue Ridge Hiking Company"
  8. ^ "Adventurers of the Year: The Hiker Jennifer Pharr Davis" retrieved April 30, 2014
  9. ^ Clemmons, Anna Katherine, "Pharr Davis Thrives on Trail," retrieved July 2, 2013
  10. ^ Gordon, Jacob, "Jennifer Pharr Davis: 2012 National Geographic Adventurer of the Year," retrieved May 10, 2014

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