Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin's Reviews > Grandma Gatewood's Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail

Grandma Gatewood's Walk by Ben Montgomery
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it was amazing
bookshelves: own

Buddy read with my wonderful friend, Candi ❤️

This book was a great inspiration!



For those of you that actually read my reviews =) there will be some spoilers on down the line because I just have to talk about Emma's horrific husband for a minute.

Anyway, at one time me, my dog, my dad, my ex-boyfriend and dog were going to hike a portion of the trail and I wanted to spend one night and hike back. But, we never did and then I became home bound so that's never going to happen. We used to pass this sign showing the trail when we were going to one of our places down the road.

There were so many references in the book to some of my old stomping grounds, Fort Oglethorpe, Gatlinburg and others.

I CAN'T believe this woman set out at 67 years old and did a thru-walk all by herself for 2,050 miles on the AT. She just had some tennis shoes, a sack and a walking stick. Dude, she was hardcore! She was a pioneer woman that was brought up with hard work all of her life so this was nothing.



Here are some of her things at the AT museum.



She pulled from the box a drawstring sack she'd made back home from a yard of denim, her wrinkled fingers doing the stitching, and opened it wide. She filled the sack with other items from the box: Vienna Sausage, raisins, peanuts, bouillon cubes, powered milk. She tucked inside a tin of Band-Aids, a bottle of iodine, some bobby pins, and a jar of Vicks salve. She packed the slippers and a gingham dress that she could shake out if she ever needed to look nice. She stuffed in a warm coat, a Swiss Army knife, a flashlight, candy mints, and her pen and a little Royal Vernon Line memo book that she bought for twenty-five cents at Murphy's back home.


Emma didn't tell her children where she was going. They never worried about her because she was a tough woman. She was a pioneer woman. She was raised on a farm where she worked hard.

She got married to a jerk of a man who beat her all of the time and at times she was unrecognizable. He needed a bullet to the head in my opinion. She finally divorced him years later. She had 11 kids and tons of grandkids and great-grandkids.

She was the first woman to do a thru-hike of the trail. And she walked it again. She also did it a third time in sections. She also walked the 2,000 mile Oregon Trail. She was 77 years old and still hiking. God, I miss hiking and I would have loved to have met this woman. She was born Oct. 25, 1887 and died June 4, 1973. I was only a year old.

She has different monuments about her. I'm sure glad for that because she is a warrior/trouper/inspiration for women.

"After the hard life I have lived," she said, "this trail isn't so bad."


This woman had all of these children by an abusive man, she worked their farm and took care of the kids and everything else that had to be done.

I loved that her kids were started out working at a young age. I think all kids should have to do this and maybe the world would be a bit better. I soooooooooooo wish my parents would have done that with me. We had a house and they could have figured something out but when we traveled to my grandmother's farm we could have worked hard in their acres of gardens. But none of us kids were made to do that.

The children all worked hard, too. By two years old, they were sweeping floors and gathering eggs. By three they were collecting kindling for the potbellied stove. By four they were washing and drying dishes. By five they knew how to wash their own clothes.


And that's not all, they worked on the farm with their mom too. Dad worked sometimes. He did some teaching jobs too. Weird that.

The story tells about Emma's time on the trails, things she ran into, people, the weather, etc. But the book also tells the story of her home life and other little tidbits.





This woman was amaze balls and she's an inspiration to me. I hope she's an inspiration to many more. Well, she was as she got many woman, kids and even some men to hiking more. I just love her. She's going in my book of people I look up to.

Mel ♥

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Reading Progress

September 6, 2017 – Started Reading
September 6, 2017 – Shelved
September 6, 2017 – Shelved as: own
September 8, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-50 of 71 (71 new)


message 1: by Miriam (new)

Miriam Smith Enjoy xx


message 3: by Dash fan (new)

Dash fan This one looks a beautiful and emotional read. Enjoy Hun xx


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin It does to me too. Thank you 😊 xx


Cheri This looks wonderful, looking forward to your review(s)!


message 7: by Narilka (new) - added it

Narilka Added this to my wish list. Thanks for the review!


message 8: by Crumb (new)

Crumb Wow, what a great review!


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Narilka wrote: "Added this to my wish list. Thanks for the review!"

Thank you hon =) I hope you like it ♥


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Crumb wrote: "Wow, what a great review!"

Thank you so much =) ♥


message 11: by Donna (new)

Donna Great review Mel :-) This woman really was amazing!!! I loved hiking too, and miss it. But man this woman was incredible with all that she did, and I wonder what her children grew to be like.


message 12: by MKay (new) - rated it 5 stars

MKay Great review. She sounds amazing. I would love to have enough time off work to hike some of those trails. Maybe when I'm her age LOL!


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Donna wrote: "Great review Mel :-) This woman really was amazing!!! I loved hiking too, and miss it. But man this woman was incredible with all that she did, and I wonder what her children grew to be like."

Thanks hon =) Her children from the little I read about them, they were great people. I'm guessing so with such a great mom.


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin MKay wrote: "Great review. She sounds amazing. I would love to have enough time off work to hike some of those trails. Maybe when I'm her age LOL!"

Yeah! We can all go when were old =D Well, now I have arthritis, fibro and a thing I can't pronounce in my foot!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe if I worked hard as nails from a child like she did, all of those ailments wouldn't have had time to set in 0.o


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you dear, Rita =) I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! We can miss it together =(


message 16: by Kaceey (new)

Kaceey Wonderful review Melissa!:-)


message 17: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Great review Melissa, sounds like a book I'd really enjoy, thanks.


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Kaceey wrote: "Wonderful review Melissa!:-)"

Thank you, Kaceey =)


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Kevin wrote: "Great review Melissa, sounds like a book I'd really enjoy, thanks."

Thank you, Kevin =) I hope you get to read it and I think you would enjoy it =)


message 20: by Maureen (new)

Maureen Great review Melissa, sounds like one heck of a woman!


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you hon 💕😊 She sure was! I just loved her!


message 22: by Nazanin (new)

Nazanin Terrific review, babe! 💚


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you doll 💕😊


Brenda - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews Great review, Melissa! Glad to see it was 5 stars for you


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you dear, Brenda 💕😊


message 26: by Stefan Bach (new)

Stefan Bach Great review Mel, and what an amazing woman she was!! :D


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you so much hon 💕😊 She sure was!


message 28: by Donna (new)

Donna Wonderful review, Melissa!


message 29: by Thomas (new)

Thomas Strömquist Wow! All kinds of wow, actually!


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Donna wrote: "Wonderful review, Melissa!"

Thank you sweetheart 💕😊


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thomas wrote: "Wow! All kinds of wow, actually!"

Awww, thank you 😊


message 32: by TL (new)

TL Wonderful review hun


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you so much dear one 💕😊


message 34: by TL (new)

TL <3


message 36: by Hákon (new) - added it

Hákon Gunnarsson Good review Melissa. Emma seems to have been a very interesting woman.


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin She sure was, she's my hero 😊


message 38: by Selena (new)

Selena beautiful review sweetheart ❤❤❤


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Thank you hon 💕😊


message 40: by Brenda (new) - added it

Brenda Absolutely LOVED your review, Mel ♥ I have this book beside my bed in a pile. I really need to get to it. So glad you enjoyed it. =) ♥ xo


message 41: by Eilonwy (new)

Eilonwy Awesome review! This woman was the original Cheryl Strayed! :-)
I'm always meaning to go walk the bit of the AT that's in Massachusetts, but do I ever get around to it ... ^^ Maybe I should read this and it will give me the kick I need. Your personal touches in the review make it all too clear we should never count on doing things in some vague "later." Hugs, Melissa.


Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader ❤️ ❤️ ❤️ I loved this review! I added this book! Stories like this really inspire me. Mel, I have always wanted to hike at least part of the trail, too, but it hasn't happened for me either. My best friend did it and I wish I had gone with her years ago. Thanks for sharing this book with us! Xoxo 😘


message 43: by Bionic Jean (new)

Bionic Jean I don't remember you two reading this ... must have missed it. Sounds good - great review Mel, thanks :)


message 44: by Christy (new)

Christy Fabulous review, Melissa! :)


message 45: by Annie (new)

Annie Excellent review Mel 👍, I miss hiking too 😢


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Brenda wrote: "Absolutely LOVED your review, Mel ♥ I have this book beside my bed in a pile. I really need to get to it. So glad you enjoyed it. =) ♥ xo"

Thank you so much, Brenda 💕😊. I hope you enjoy it too! 😘 xoxo


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Eilonwy wrote: "Awesome review! This woman was the original Cheryl Strayed! :-)
I'm always meaning to go walk the bit of the AT that's in Massachusetts, but do I ever get around to it ... ^^ Maybe I should read th..."


Thank you so much sweetheart 💕😊. Yes, do read it and make yourself get out there because you just never know. I didn't know I would be like this. Life ended for me in 2008, my real life outdoors. You get on that trail 💕 Hugs!


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader wrote: "❤️ ❤️ ❤️ I loved this review! I added this book! Stories like this really inspire me. Mel, I have always wanted to hike at least part of the trail, too, but it hasn't happened for me either. My bes..."

Thank you so much dear, Jen 💕😊 xoxo. I love these kinds of books too. Even though they make me sad in a certain way, they make me sooo happy. I wish I could have been tough as nails like her 😊


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Jean wrote: "I don't remember you two reading this ... must have missed it. Sounds good - great review Mel, thanks :)"

We were buddy reading on our own. I enjoy that, but real life has Candi reading slower. We still talk about it in emails. 💕😊


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Christy wrote: "Fabulous review, Melissa! :)"

Thank you sweets 💕😊


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