Our Story

We are Melissa and Reuben Stugart, a couple of teachers who fell in love with exploring the world. We met at our first teaching job at a wilderness therapeutic facility for adjudicated boys in rural Georgia. We discovered a common enthusiasm for the outdoors and helping children in need. After a few years of working together, we decided to get married and thru-hike the Appalachian Trail for our honeymoon in 2007.  Since then, we have traveled extensively during our winter and summer teacher breaks.

After completing the AT, we told ourselves that one day we would become Triple Crowners, by also finishing thru-hikes on the Pacific Crest Trail and Continental Divide Trails. That day has finally come! We are Teachers on Hiatus.

Our Five Phase Plan:

HILO camper travel

Southbound, baby.

Teaching Careers:

We feel it is important to note that we have not left education – we are merely taking a break to fulfill other dreams. We have dedicated our lives to the translation of knowledge (academic, behavioral, and emotional). It was a TOUGH choice to leave the kiddos, but they are all excited to watch our journey with us!

Melissa (Trail Name: Solar) Credentials:

  • PhD in Literacy
  • National Board Certified
  • 2018 Metro Nashville Public Schools Blue Ribbon Teacher
  • Served 12 Years as a Classroom Teacher
  • Served 4 Years in Education Policy at State and National Level

Reuben (Trail Name: Lunar) Credentials:

  • M.Ed. in Special Education
  • Served 2 Years as a Principal
  • Served 3 Years as an Instructional Coach
  • Served 13 Years as Special Education/Science Teacher

Check Out Our Introductory Youtube Video as well! Please subscribe to our channel.