Nima Shahidi


After years of studying Environmental Science, I finally got my degree, and I found myself at a crossroads. I hate spent years behind a desk, learning about how the world worked. I am an avid traveler, even while I was in school. I found myself in Denmark, Iceland, Peru, Australia, India, New Zealand and even the coast of Antarctica. I knew I wanted to continue my travels, and I made a small pact with myself in 2005, that I would hike the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine as a graduation gift. I was working at an outfitter at the time, and all around me people said, "Do it while you are young". So not knowing which direction to go, I strapped on some trail runners, grabbed my pack, and took a train to Georgia.


I found something in those steps, a sense of accomplishment, adventure, and more importantly community. A diverse group of people that I call a family now. The deep connections I made with other hikers was different then anything I have known, and when you didn't see someone for a week, it was like you hadn't seen them in months. I talk to many of those hikers on a regular basis. Lets not forget about the beautiful scenery, I got to see the changes of the seasons as I walked north. I remember a fellow hiker making a comment, "The worse day on the trail, is better then any day spent working inside." No matter how much rain, snow, or mosquito bites would get to you, we all had the time of our life. Life is never the same after a journey like that, so you could say I am hooked. I want to push the envelope, not only with long distance hiking, but trail running, cycling, and even kayaking. The days of the professional explorer are not over, I assure you of that.

I consider myself a minimalist backpacker, not a ultra lighter. I try to minimize the gear I carry, and the weight of the items that I do consider important. How do I do it differently one may ask? Well, I do it all as a Vegan.

Nima Shahidi

According to Merrian-Webster dictionary:

Vegan (noun): A strict vegetarian who consumes no animal food or dairy products; also: one who abstains from using animal products.

As the above stated, I do not consume any animal products, this includes down and wool. I want to diminish the existing image that vegans simply can not cut it in these sports. It is possible, it has been done, and I want to document it on the Pacific Crest Trail in 2010. I think there is simply not enough information on long distance hiking as a vegetarian/vegan. I have been helping with a website meant to help other vegan/vegetarian backpackers: WWW.BACKPACKINGVEGAN.WORDPRESS.COM

Long distance backpacking requires a lot of energy, that is why I chose Primal Strips when I did a vegan thru hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2009. Primal Strips are all natural, vegan and taste great. Even skeptical carnivorous hikers will agree! That is why I will be packing Primal Strips with me on my thru hike of Pacific Crest Trail in 2010.

It brings me great pleasure to be considered a Primal Person, along with the rest of the great people on this website.

Take a hike,
Nima Shahidi
aka Linus Cloudbuster