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Walking the Te Araroa Trail : Kylie Lang’s Quest

This is a quest case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.)

I love New Zealand, and when I heard the story of someone who set out to walk the length of both main islands, I had to hear more.

Introduce yourself.

I am a New Zealander who until recently led a pretty standard life as a coordinator of an online sports mentoring program. A few years ago, I got it into my head to walk the length of New Zealand—all 3058 kilometers of it, following the Te Araroa Trail. When I told my husband, he was concerned about me going alone, and that’s when the quest got a theme: Not Alone.

I’d walk the length of New Zealand, but with a revolving cast of people the entire way. And we’d raise money for The Mental Health Foundation as we went.

Why did you decide to undertake your quest?

I believe people need to talk more. So much gets bottled up in our heads. We ponder, overthink, and make thoughts worse, until we talk them out. I handle situations better knowing someone else has heard about it.

Both my father and brother committed suicide—and I know I need to share those experiences and hear about others who have been in the same boat in order to make sense of it all. So why walk? Well, exercise clears my head and helps keep negative thoughts away. Walking and talking seem to go hand in hand.

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The Modern Day Swiss Family Robinson : On the Road with Sheralyn Guilleminot

This is a traveler case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.)

Sheralyn Guilleminot didn't want to run the risk of never getting around to traveling the world. She and her husband Paul took to the road as a young family, home-schooling their sons while experiencing life in Southeast Asia. Here's their story.

Tell us about yourself.

I've lived most of my life in Manitoba, Canada. It's where I grew up, got married, and worked. My husband Paul and I wanted to travel the world, but it seemed impractical. Once we had our two boys, though, I felt like there was never enough time to spend with Paul, with our family, or to indulge in being myself. And I didn’t see an end to being pulled in too many different directions. Something had to change.

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25 Journeys, 1,000 Miles Each : Dave Cornthwaite’s Quest

This is a quest case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.)

Dave2 Dave Cornthwaite's quest has been called "One of the most ambitious adventures of the 21st century," and in the process of his journey he has broken nine world records. Here's his story:

Introduce yourself and your quest.

A decade ago I spent two weeks learning how to skateboard, and promptly quit my graphic design job to spend the next year skateboarding further than anyone else had ever skated. I traversed the length of Britain (as a warm up) and then skated Australia.

Now, I’m working on what I call Expedition1000: 25 journeys of 1,000 miles or more, each using a different form of non-motorized transport.

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“Because of Traveling, We Know Ourselves”: On the Road with Jim and Rhonda Delemeter

This is a traveler case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.

Jim and Rhonda, long-term travelers, aren't afraid to "jump into the void." Here's their story.

Tell us about yourselves. What inspired you to leave home and travel?

Back in 2007 we sold our house and backpacked around the world for 14 months, which made us hungry for something more. In spite of having really great lives in the USA, we wanted to open our minds to other influences.

The more you travel, the more you realize that the way you do something isn’t necessarily the "right" way. Even, such as in places like India, when we simply don't always understand their way, we are at least able to stand back and say, "Okay, this is perhaps not the way we would have done things, but that's alright.”

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The Beauty of Traveling Solo: On the Road with Megan Van Groll

This is a travel hacking case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.)

Not everyone feels comfortable traveling alone, which is one of the reasons why Megan Van Groll's tales intrigued me. She's an advocate for exploring the world by yourself, going so far as to spend all of her time outside of a full-time job encouraging people to do just that.

Megan5 Tell us about yourself.

By day, I’m a social media strategist at a large creative advertising agency. My education and background is actually in studio art, so I keep a studio in my home and paint—both for myself, and on commission. Lately I've been doing a lot of freelance writing and blogging about travel and career design.

Above all else, I’m a travel addict and advocate for independent travel. I also believe strongly that everyone should take a solo trip at some point in their life.

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Traveling the World on $50 a Day: On the Road with Matt Kepnes

This is a traveler case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.)

Popular traveler "Nomadic Matt" is no stranger to most of our community. For the past nine years, he's been traveling the world, reporting on budget strategies from dozens of countries. This week he has a new book out, and I thought we'd check in to see how he got started.

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Matt and I’ve been traveling the world since 2006. I wasn't a big traveler growing up—I never even took an overseas trip until after college. My life was very regimented before that first trip to Costa Rica: commute, work, gym, TV, sleep, repeat.

Costa Rica was the exact opposite of that life. Everyday was different. I was trying new things, meeting new people, and exposed to lifestyles I had never encountered before. And I was free. Before I started traveling, I was undecided: I went to school to be a teacher, ended up in working in health care, went on to earn an MBA. After a trip to Thailand, it became clear that the cubicle life was not for me. I was suddenly quite decisive, and I hit the road. Matt3

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A World Record to Ski 4,161,823 Vertical Feet : Steph Jagger’s Quest

This is a quest case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.)

One time I went skiing for an hour, and then I went for hot chocolate in the lodge. Steph Jagger, whom I met at a book event in San Diego, went skiing and didn't stop until she'd gone more than four million vertical feet.

Tell us about yourself.

I’m Steph Jagger and I currently live in California where I run an executive & life coaching practice. From July 2010 to May 2011, I circumnavigated the globe in search of snow.

While traveling I skied 4,161,823 vertical feet, breaking the world record for most vertical feet skied in a single year. My original goal was 4,000,000 feet—but when I found out about the record (approximately 8 months into my trip) I tacked on a few extra feet!

steph3

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Travel & Quest Case Studies Needed (“Are You Interesting? Do You Have a Great Story?”)

Above photo from Tom Allen’s quest story Hey everyone! For the past few months, we’ve been running a series of traveler and “quester” profiles, usually each Tuesday and Thursday. Judging from your feedback and social sharing, here are several of your early favorites: “Goodbye, Comfort Zone”: On the Road with Marvin and Josephine Abisia “Life…

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“50 Hourly Jobs in 50 States”: Alyssa and Heath Padgett’s Quest

This is a quest case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.) I met Alyssa and Heath Padgett when they joined our media team for WDS 2014. They arrived with an interesting story—as part of an unconventional honeymoon, they were visiting all 50 states in a used RV, working an hourly job in each one. Tell us…

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Dreams Have a Habit of Popping Back Up: On the Road with Lola Akinmade Akerstrom

This is a traveler case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.) When no one else believes in your dreams, sometimes they get lost in the shuffle until you find the strength to believe yourself. Lola Akinmade Akerstrom was a systems architect who’d dreamed of making a living of travel since she was a child. Tell us…

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A Destination Wedding in Your Own City: A Story from Patrick and Laura Furlong

This is a reader story. (Read others or tell us yours.) Patrick and Laura are two travel-loving newlyweds. When I heard the story of how they incorporated travel into their wedding, I had to share. – We’re obsessed with stories. If you needed to only know one thing about us, that’s it. At our core,…

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