Conditions on the border of North Carolina and Tennessee could facilitate life on Lam
The whereabouts of Florida’s fugitive Brain Laundry is still unknown nearly four weeks after his parents told him they last left their northern harbor home for a hike in a nearby environmental reserve.
The 23-year-old New York native is wanted on debit card fraud charges and has been named a person of interest in connection with the death of his 22-year-old fiancé Gabby Petito, whose FBI uncovers at a campsite. Wyoming on September 19. It marked eight days after his mother was reported missing and more than two weeks after Laundry reportedly appeared in Petito’s van at his parents’ home – without him.
Although there have been conflicting reports about the extent of his skills as an outsider, he has a history of spending a long time in state and national parks.
Hiker Who Claimed He Saw Brian Laundry Near Appalachian Trail, Says FBI ‘Took Too Many Notes’
According to trail guides, it’s the wrong time of year to start heading north on the Appalachian Trail from its southern tip in Georgia, but the stretch along the North Carolina-Tennessee border can be a perfect place to hide. Even though it nears the end of the southbound season, the trail winds its way across state lines in locations away from major cities, nearing completion for thru-hikers who begin in Maine.
The Laundry family’s attorney, Steven Bertolino, described Brian Laundry as “a backpacker” and claimed he was a skilled existentialist.
But there have also been a series of possible laundry sightings along or near the long section of the Appalachian Trail where it traverses the state line between North Carolina and Tennessee.
“The southern and northern ends of the trail are areas where you can really just get down and get lost there,” said 23-year-old thru-hiker Orlando Callas Jr.
Potential Brian Laundry Sighting: Hear the 911 Call from Appalachian Trail Hikers
Fresh water is plentiful, he said, as long as you have a basic filter. And although food may be more difficult, it is still available.
“It’s extremely difficult to do, even if you have support,” he said.
Kailas found help during his travels – going out with a cousin and connecting with other travelers they met along the way. His father also followed his progress in a vehicle when he needed food and water or anything else. When he needed to take a break from the path known as “zero day”, he picked them up and took them to hotels.
“I consider it one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, simply because you have to have the amount of physical and mental fortitude to be able to complete it,” he told Granthshala News. “It’s blowing—just walking miles and miles, dealing with falls, dealing with bad weather.”
With that kind of help, Kailas rated the mark eight on a scale of one to 10, with 10 being the hardest.
Without that support system, he said, “it would easily be at 10.”
Still, it’s doable he said. Fishing and hunting are viable means of finding food in the area, he said, and there is an abundant supply of food for forage.
“There’s definitely enough wildlife out there, and so many berries,” he said.
Volunteer groups also help with food, shelter and transport to pedestrians along the way – but Callas said word has probably spread all along the way by now and people are looking for someone who matches the laundry description.
“They do a good job informing pedestrians about what’s happening along the way,” he said. “Which areas should be avoided, should there be any suspects or wildfires. So there is a network of people who are dedicated to letting hikers…or even trail angels know What are the dangers happening around the Appalachian Trail.”
Callas, who is from Florida, also noted that the terrain of the Appalachian Trail is very different from hiking the flatlands in the Sunshine State.
“It’s all flat – you can’t really compare it,” he said. “Just dealing with humidity and freezing rain slathering through all your gear, and dealing with real elevation changes as opposed to hiking a boardwalk in the Everglades.