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A return to adventure, and unlimited conservation

Elias "Eli" Abbott - 'Our Local Hero'

Connecticut is awash in history, culture, and inspiration, with our lovely Salisbury a true reflection of everything that makes this state a perfect place to call home. A haven for artists and visionaries, Salisbury is also a host to one of America’s most extraordinary conservation efforts– the enigmatic Appalachian National Scenic Trail. The A.T. stretches 48 miles through Connecticut’s hardwood forests, including crossing through our beloved Salisbury. Many are drawn to this journey, whether seeking reflection, renewed health, or a break from the monotony of everyday life.

The AT stretches over 2,180 miles, from the rolling hills of northern Georgia to the towering heights of central Maine. Outdoor enthusiasts, tourists, and pilgrims flock to this iconic trail every summer, where they test the limits of endurance as they trek over ancient peaks and flowing rivers. Declared America’s first National Scenic Trail in 1968, the A.T. is a testament to the collective effort of small communities to conserve and protect some of our nation’s most historic and beautiful regions. Hikers on this trail cross hallowed grounds of former battlefields, meander through revolutionary towns, and follow the footsteps of early inhabitants, who once roamed these hills and called these woods home. 

One such adventurer is Elias “Eli” Abbott, the 18 yr old son of Elyse Harney Real Estate’s dearly loved accountant virtuoso, Viv LaBerge. Eli is a recent graduate of Housatonic High School, and he took a “jump year” to work multiple jobs and save up to fund his great AT adventure. Viv looks forward to seeing her son on his journey when he passes through the Litchfield Hills on his quest to reach Mt. Katahdin by the end of July. Eli began his AT journey on March 1st starting from Amicalola Falls State Park in Georgia, and, joining many on this adventure of a lifetime, he is slowly making his way north. In his journey, Eli has already gained a trail name. So, keep your ears and eyes tuned throughout this coming season, in case you catch the sweet melody of a ukulele coming through the trees. That will be the sign that “Bard” has made his way to our little hamlet.

  • Once he finishes his journey, Eli will be starting school at Louis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon. To follow along on Eli’s (or “Bard’s”) journey, you can find him on his Facebook page, “Where’s Eli?” 

Regardless of their reasons, A.T. hikers (like Eli) are stewards of history, traveling the same journey as thousands have done before them. With the honor of being a host community of these travelers’ quest, Salisbury becomes a conservation steward. Even if we may never set foot upon it, this trail is a testament to our values:

• Our pride in our history
• Our love for our community
• A dedication to the beauty surrounding us. 

“I absolutely couldn’t be more proud of him. I always wanted to hike the AT so I’m living vicariously through him. He left his electric guitar with me for safe-keeping.  Every time I play it, I think of him & miss him!”  – Viv

The Tri-State Region's Ambassadors for over 3 decades

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Millerton, New York 
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The Tri-State Region's Ambassadors