Shilletha Dragonsky hiking backpack trees Appalachian trail

Shilletha “Dragonsky” was born in Newark, New Jersey and spent much of her time growing up in Morristown and down by the shore. Shilletha received her Bachelor’s in Social Work from Rutgers University in 2014 and spent a summer abroad in Beijing, China (2012) to further her Mandarin speaking skills and Romania (2013) to do an internship at an orphanage in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Helping people has always been her passion but she found that she had a profound love for animals and eventually the outdoors. She trained as a Veterinary Technician in 2016 in Austin, Texas and practiced for two years when she realized that there was more to life than working a typical 9 to 5 when she lost her job due to the coronavirus pandemic in March of 2020.

With a new outlook on life, Shilletha decided to pursue the Triple Crowns. She plans to be the second Black woman to achieve the status and will be thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail in the winter of 2021. She discovered the trail last year while hiking with her girlfriend and has caught the AT bug since. Shilletha is an excellent writer and her first article “Not Just Another Hiker” was published in June of 2020 when Shilletha dealt with advert racism in the Appalachian Trail Facebook groups for asking about her safety as a Black woman hiking in the south following the killing of a Black man who was jogging in Georgia. Discouraged, she turned her pain into power and wrote about the incident. The article was cross-published by The Trek and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and prompted a conversation about racism in many communities around the world. 

Since then, it has been her mission to diversify the outdoors, make the AT more accessible to BIPOC and  address inequalities and racism within the hiking community. Unfiltered and honest has been her style of writing and she has no problem telling you like it is. Writing is her passion and she is a writer for Garage Grown Gear and is currently working on her memoir 27.3.

Shilletha is a go-getter and she has plans next year to move to Canada,  tackle the second leg of her Triple Crown on the Pacific Crest Trail and see where her hiking takes her.

She has partnered and been sponsored by a few companies and is super excited to be a part of the Six Moons Designs family!

Notable achievements/ Publications

2020 She Explores “Where We Walk” Podcast series

2020 “Not Just Another Hiker” published by the ATC

2020 “What’s In a Trail Name” published by The Trek

2020 “Financial Barriers Are Magnified for Black Hikers. Period” Garage Grown Gear

Guest publications

2020 “The Scariest Encounters Women Have on the Appalachian Trail Are With Men” The Daily Beast

Insta: @_dragonsky_

Youtube: The Trek : Shilletha AT 2021 updates