We are Travis (RamboJuice) and Melony (Stretch) husband and wife. Attending the same college, and working together at a restaurant, we fell in love and got married. Having always loved travel and outdoors, we started to make plans. Our first adventure was honeymooning in Alaska. Travis ended up going to school to become a mechanic and worked as a technician and shop foreman on BMW most of his career. Melony finished her degree in wildlife biology, later earned an MBA, and became a certified yoga instructor, and personal trainer.
Over the years we have backpacked, camped and hiked all over the United States, including Big Bend, The Great Smoky Mountains, Carlsbad Caverns, Guadalupe Mountains, Canyonlands, Arches, Capitol Reef, Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Zion, Joshua Tree, Saguaro, Death Valley, Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Reyes Point, Redwoods, Natural Bridges, White Sands, Dunes, Olympic, Yosemite, Texas National Seashore, Denali, Petrified Forest, and many more state parks. We also completed 1,400 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail in 2017. We completed a 2200 mile thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2018. We are currently planning a thru-hike of the Florida Trail in early 2019 and a thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail in the spring.
We had done all the right things. We had an education and productive jobs, owned a house, cars, and whatever else came along with that (no kids). That life never felt right though. No matter what we did it always felt like we were just treading water, never really doing what we always wanted to do, travel. Debt from all that education and material goods was always looming over our heads, while still trying to save for retirement and vacations.
This was not the life we wanted, we had been sold on a dream that was not a good fit for us. Both of us were becoming more and more unhappy with our lives and jobs. We took trips here and there, but it was not the real traveling we had often fantasized about. How could we, when your employer for over the last decade only gives you fifteen whole days a year?
Melony began to develop chronic neck and back pain from sitting at a desk all day. She was in enough pain that it forced her to quit her job as an accountant. Over the next year, the only relief that doctors would offer her was medication and surgery. This was an option that neither of us liked, being on muscle relaxers and pain medication was simply not a healthy option. So Melony began to do her own research and found that Yoga and exercise really helped her to manage the pain. Melony went on to get her certification in personal training and as a Yoga instructor. Meanwhile, Travis was still working and his job was creating more stress than it was worth.
We had decided to start planning our first epic adventure, a road trip from Texas to California then up to Oregon and Washington, followed by a Thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail. Managing our debt was a huge priority, so we started to eliminate things from our life that impeded our path to a better life. Selling our house, two vehicles and paying down our debt really freed up our income for our adventures. We moved back in with Travis' parents, who have been nothing short of amazing in supporting our dream. Travis quit his job and Melony supported us while we saved money. Travis devoted his time to prepare for our hike and road trip. Melony implemented a workout regime for us to get into shape for our thru-hike. In March of 2017, we began our epic travel adventure.
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