Campanarius was founded by Kevin ‘Greyhound’ Riedel (AT Ridgerunner ’09, BMT ’13, ALT ’17, current Catholic seminarian studying for the priesthood) to help fellow hikers live out their Catholic faith while on the trail.
While long distance backpacking offers numerous benefits, including the chance to exercise, meet new people, and encounter the beauty of creation, it can be difficult for hikers to maintain a connection to the sacraments, either because there aren’t enough churches near the trail, or hikers can’t find them.
We hope to change that by providing up-to-date and trail-ready information on all the Catholic churches accessible from long distance hiking trails, starting with the AT.
Our name symbolizes our mission. Like the bell towers from days of old, Campanarius calls modern day backcountry travelers to unshoulder their packs and spend some time with God.
Our mission- to integrate a healthy Christian spirituality with long distance backpacking- depends on you. All of the information in our guides is “crowd sourced”. Anyone can contribute, whether they are a seasoned thru-hiker or just someone who wants a productive way surf the internet. If you’d like to help hikers in their walk with God by connecting them with the sacraments, check out this page to start researching and sharing your data!
If you’re a backcountry traveler who would like to incorporate regular attendance of the sacraments into your hike, check out these printable data sheets that detail all of the Catholic churches and mass/confession times accessible to the Appalachian Trail!