Thoughts on Depression and Time Spent Outdoors

The amazing Cathy Bell, park ranger extraordinaire, is through-hiking the WHOLE Appalachian Trail this summer [that’s 2,185 miles!]. But more than that, she’s also dedicating her hike to mental health research. She’s asking for a dollar per mile–anything helps!!!

Cathy Bell

Three days ago, on March 26, I announced that I would dedicate my 2014 Appalachian Trail thru-hike to HIKE for Mental Health, a nonprofit that directs donations to mental health research and preservation of wilderness trails.  While building my fundraising page, I hesitated over what dollar amount to set as a goal.  I settled on $500, which seemed a modest but attainable figure.

I vastly underestimated the generosity and caring of my friends, family, and readers.  Together, we surpassed that $500 goal in just two days.  I decided to step it up and go for a new reach goal of $2,185, or one dollar for each mile of the AT.  Can you help?

That new $2,185 goal seems unattainable to me as I write this, but perhaps that is fitting: for many people, the very notion of walking all the way from Georgia to Maine must seem like an…

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