Hammer & Corky, where did that come from? Well in mid 2010 we took long service leave from our jobs, and did a three-month road trip through Alaska, Canada and Western United States. We hiked, canoed and camped our way through as many National Parks and State Forests we could cover in the time we had. We started a blog to document those travels and so Hammer & Corky was born.

Mike (Hammer) is a high school science teacher, a keen cyclist, a natty surfer and a marathon runner. And I (Stef) am a marine scientist by training and share Mikes running obsession. I am also a keen photographer.

We met at University when Mike was finishing his undergraduate degree as a mature aged student (all of 29) and I was finishing a PhD. Our love of an active, outdoor life brought us together and we have kept exploring in our 30 years together. We’ve hiked sections of the Pacific Crest Trail in 2010 (Hiking the PCT ) and vowed to return and attempt to hike the whole thing. But in 2012 I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that put all our adventure travel on a “maybe never” basis. It took a couple of years to find a treatment that put all the symptoms into remission and we started to dream of maybe another grand adventure. In 2016 Mike took a years leave from work and I have closed my consulting practice and we started the Pacific Crest Trail hike in late April 2016. We hiked all of California together when an unfortunate accident ended my hike. Mike went on to finish the PCT in 2016 and I returned in 2017 to complete the Oregon and Washington section. In 2019 we are footloose and free and will be starting a hike on the Continental Divide Trail in mid-April.

And in reply to a question of why?” Here is an answer:

“It’s the great, big, broad land ‘way up yonder,
It’s the forests where silence has lease;
It’s the beauty that thrills me with wonder,
It’s the stillness that fills me with peace.”

Robert Service