Thomas Meissner has been hiking and backpacking all over the US, Canada, Europe, Africa, South America, Australia and New Zealand since he was a child. This includes a through-hike of the John Muir Trail, and large sections of the Appalachian Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail. He has led Sierra Club trekking trips into Europe and more than 150 backpack trips into California's High Sierra and coastal mountains. In 2011 he received recognition as outstanding leader for the Sierra Club National Outings program. Thomas has also been organizing and teaching the annual backpack beginners course of the local San Francisco Sierra Club Bay Chapter since 2001.