LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Jennifer Pharr Davis describes her journey on the Appalachian Mountains as "life changing," a record-breaking trek that allowed the North Carolina native a chance to share her story of hardship, pain and triumph.
"You just really enjoy hearing someone do something, a major event like what she did," said attendee and Lake Charles native Rick McGuirt.
Davis is a three-time Appalachian Trail hiker. She shared details of her journey on her first visit to Southwest Louisiana at the Calcasieu Parish Central Library that landed her the 2011 record-breaking trek of completing the trail in just 46 days, making her the first woman to ever set that mark.
"I love getting outdoors," said Davis, who was joined by her husband and daughter Charley. "My first journey on the Appalachian Trail was so life changing and in such a positive way that I wanted to get other people outdoors."
With the help of her husband, Davis started her own hiking company, Blue Ridge Hiking Co., wrote several books about her trails and even won the National Geographic's 2012 Adventurer of the Year Award.
"I'm really proud of that but you know, my belief is that the trail is there for everyone at every phase of life," said Davis. "So, no matter if you're a family with young kids or an older couple who still wants to get out there, then the trail is there for you."
Davis is currently on a book tour and will continue to make guest-speaking appearances in Louisiana for the next few days.