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Chris Reamer, 28, took the challenge of completing laborious hike with an aim to reduce his weight. He successfully accomplished arduous hike within 6 months from March to September.
He learnt many amazing things in his journey and also made new friends. Read the story about Delaware man who has hiked the whole Appalachian trail.
Chris began the journey in March by travelling from Wilmington, Delaware to Springer Mountain, Georgia – the southernmost end of the Appalachian trail. He has witnessed the wildness and beauty in Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont and New Hampshire before reaching the end of the road on Mount Katahdin in Maine in September.
Chris believes that his physical transformation is only a perk. Chris is now planning to hike the 2,663 miles Pacific Coast Trail too.
Two years ago, Chris weighed 245 lbs and was suffering from low self-confidence. Chris said,'This was also around the same time that I started to gain an interest in hiking. I found that even completing a short hike made me feel good about myself and what I accomplished... and that being out hiking gave me a chance to get away from some of the stresses of life and really elevated my self esteem.I eventually got to the point where I wanted to prove to myself that I was capable of completing something that most people wouldn't even attempt. So then the planning began.'
Chris saved a lot of money for his trip to avoid financial crunch. He also sold his car and launched a GoFundMe page.
Chris used to get up around 6:30 am, make breakfast, filter water for the day and set out for his journey by 8:30 am. He used to travel nearly 12-15 miles every day before making camp again at night. Sometimes, he took a break from the tent and spent the night in a trail hostel.
Chris spent most of his time by watching the 'amazing views, gorgeous forests, and wildlife.' He saw waterfalls in Georgia's Amicalola Falls State Park, wild ponies in Virginia's Grayson Highlands State Park, sunsets in New Jersey, and the Greylock War Memorial in Massachusetts.
Chris also made some amazing friends on the trail; some of them left mile markers while others offered food, drinks or a place to shower. He believes that he couldn't have completed his journey without the help of 'trail angels' who supported him along the way.
Chris used to rely on 'typical backpacker food', including oat meals, Pop Tarts, beef jerky, canned tuna, granola and ramen. Sometimes he'd grab McDonalds in town, which he said 'will stay good for days in a backpack.'
Chris exclaimed,'There are so many people along the way that do things like this for thru hikers. 'People always ask me what the best part of the trail was, or my favorite part, and I always tell them the people. The community is like nothing else in the world, and my trail family.'
Chris explained, 'The simplest reason I can say for hiking the Appalachian Trail was I didn't want to sit around and feel bad for myself anymore. Just the small steps of trying to lose a few pounds turned into the best decision of my life and now I feel better than I ever have and completing the trail was like nothing I could have imagined.'