White Mountain Kid

How Did I Get Here?

The Appalachian trail was just a thought in 2012, I only knew it existed. Some of my good friends from home and I had some interest in Visiting and hiking the White Mountains. We’d stay at the cabin (Thunderbird Lodge) my grandparents built back in the 70’s with the help of their two kids (Uncle Pete and Dad) in Tamworth, NH. The cabin a cozy 18’x 36′ (including the screened porch) one bed, one bath, loft that included and a kitchen stuffed in a hall to the dining/living room, could remarkably sleep eight (good) friends and anyone who would sleep on the floor. The cabin served as home base for trips to the Whites, birthday parties, and occasionally seasonal celebrations. I am, by nature, goal oriented. But it was my friends’ encouragement of my goal to summit the 4000 footers of NH, a badge-worthy achievement of the Appalachian Mountain club (AMC) that made me start to consider through hiking the AT someday. They’d hike with me almost whenever I’d ask. College began for most if not a variety of work schedules that compromised their ability to provide hiking companionship. I found I enjoyed solo hiking and meeting others on the trail. I continued to hike solo ultimately building my own self confidence to see the challenge of summiting the 48 4000 footers through.

Where Am I Going?

Where and when do the seeds get planted for through hiking the AT? How does a kid from New England end up headed to Springer Mountain in the dead of winter? In 2014 my hobby was no doubt hiking. My thoughts outside work and school mostly included what’s next to challenge my hiking ability? Maine, Vermont, New York all had their own 4000 footers and the Appalachian Trail began to pop into the list of challenges whenever people asked if that’s what I really wanted to do. “Yeah! That’s what I want to do”, I said, even though I was still really just contemplating the idea.

People were curious;

Who are you hiking with?

What are you going to do about animals, phone, sleeping, weather, food, people?

When are you planning on hiking?

Where are you going?

And the biggest ones.. Why? And How?
Why? Simply put, my dream became my goal. I want to through hike the AT! How am I going to do it? Well, you’ll just have to read my blog.? People would normally give feed back after explained all this to them and I would only receive one of two opinions. “Whoa! Cool, I wish I could’ve done that!” Or the more common, “Whoa, you’re nuts!” For any reader who may also be a Lion, a shout out here…I am a member of the Lions Club in Mendon, MA. The club has allowed me to pay it forward in a multitude of ways in my community. Like hiking, when you are a Lion you also meet amazing people and receive excellent advice including keeping a positive attitude when faced with doubt and challenge. So I hereby choice to look at the challenge of the AT as a “cool” experience.
To those 3rd graders following this blog from Kenwood Elementary, Fort Walton Beach, Florida, stick we will be looking at challenges and the cool adventures you can have when you keep a positive mindset. Thanks for the support ?. As I complete my last preparations, I feel I have prepared for all of the known challenges and I look forward to the surprises along the way. I’m sick of talking about doing it. So in the words of the football GOAT #TB Let’s Goooo! My planned departure is tomorrow Tuesday, February 28, 2017!

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Comments 1

  • PAUL Audette : Feb 28th

    Enjoy the journey. I have hiked the Nh 48 4000ers. Finished them the 3 years after I retired from Nh. I moved to Sc and trying to do the 40 6000ers. In Nc..You will love that area when your hike that area. I especially loved Roan Mtn. I am headed to Linville Gorge wilderness. My new favorite area. Lots trails and much peace and quite.
    I am from Lebanon Nh and I lived in Hartford Vt the last 7 years just off the AT Near Norwich Vt. I could out my backdoor and be on the trail in 20 minutes. Spent a lot of time in the woods.

    Best to you during your hike.


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