Patrick Bredlau (Trail name: RW) has lived most of his life in the flat lands of Illinois. His life-long enthusiasm for the outdoors was fostered by the Boy Scouts of America during his childhood, and later as a Boy Scout leader on many hiking and backpacking trips. His favorite sports are backpacking, fishing, and sailing. His passion for backpacking led him to hike some of the most spectacular natural locations in the United States and Canada, including the Rocky Mountains, Grand Canyon, Glacier National Park, and Banff National Park. As a sailboat racer, he has participated in the prestigious Chicago to Mackinac Island race, as well as other races on Lake Michigan. After a long and successful 38-year career as a federal bank examiner and instructor, Patrick retired in 2013 to spend more time with his family and enjoy the outdoors. His first major adventure after retirement was to successfully thru-hike the entire 2,185 miles of the Appalachian Trail in 2014.