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   Welcome. You're about to hop on the Appalachian Trail and become part of the 2009 thru-hike of Chris Hennig, whose trail name was "Feed Bag." While Feed Bag took in all the personal benefits of spending hours alone in the woods (getting in better shape, crying, pondering the meaning of life), there is a purpose greater than that for which he hiked: to make the world a better place for children. And you can be a part of this journey starting now...and help make a difference!

Start Date: 3/29/09 End Date: 9/5/09



New Hampshire…Live Free or Die

Filed under: Blog Posts — chrishennig @ 2:30 pm August 19, 2009

I’ll attempt to keep this one short since it has been well over a month since I’ve updated the photo gallery and the pictures from these last few states have been amazing. This is not to my credit, but is all thanks to Sony, good weather, and some beautiful states! Now, I must say, all you see in the galleries are sunny days and blue skies…not so in the real world of hiking. Most of my time in New England has been very wet. But thankfully, while climbing some of the most difficult sections these past few days, I’ve had the most beautiful weather that can be expected. For example, Mount Washington is covered in fog well over 200 days a year. My climbs up the Franconia Notch, Mt Webster, and Mt Washington were all beautiful days.

Since I entered the White Mountain Range one week ago (8/12), I added the elevation gain of the major climbs. (It’s hard to account for the smaller ups and downs.) Within those seven days, I climbed well over 24,000 feet of elevation! I know, right? Not that the tough climbing is over…but yikes, it was not easy. Thanks to Phoenix for the slack-pack help from Mt. Washington all the way to Rt. 2! I’ve also been hiking with two fellow NoBos the past week, Snarky Snarkerson and Daddy Long Legs. It’s been great to have their company and I hope to keep it as long as possible!

Sometime tomorrow afternoon (8/19), Lord willing, I will be crossing into the final state! Maine! Granted, it’s a long one to complete at 280.9 miles to Katahdin. But the end is in sight! I even have a tentative summit/finish date, weather permitting: September 6th.

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Top 5 lists with 500 to go!

Filed under: Blog Posts — chrishennig @ 9:09 pm August 9, 2009

Okay, after leaving Rutland, VT, I technically have 487.9 miles to go. But who’s counting?

I AM COUNTING.

Anyway…before we launch into the Top 5′s, here is an important message from my dear friends Celeste and Nate. They are newlyweds, so I’m going to give them the trail name “Lover Lanes” as their last name is Lane. :)

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Psalms 28:3 “Give justice to the poor and the orphan; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.”

James 1:27 “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.”

I have been sponsoring a child since 2006; a young man from Tanzania named Fadhili Shabani Mgunda. Fadhili is a HOPE child which means he is directly affected by AIDS. Nathan and I have not been making a lot of money as newlyweds and have on many occasions evaluated our spending. Whenever we bring up stopping our sponsorship of Fadhili we immediately disregard the thought. God has commanded us to give our time and money to help the needy and oppressed, the orphans and widows. We feel so strongly that as Christians we have an obligation to give to those who are hurting.

Chris is giving up his time and money to hike and is asking us to pray for him on the trail and to consider sponsoring a child. Nathan and I challenge you to consider taking only a few dollars of your budget to change the fabric of a culture. It’s amazing to see and hear about how Fadhili is growing. I keep all the letters I get from him. The children have no control over their surroundings, but we have the ability to control whether or not they have food to eat and the opportunity to learn. Please don’t use the excuse that you don’t have enough money. If Nathan and I can make it work on our little-to-nothing salary, then you can too! Do your part to change a life and help Chris reach his goal of 2,200 children being sponsored during his hike.

Nathan and Celeste Lane

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Top 5 Trail Names
5. Snarky Snarkelson
4. Daddy Longlegs
3. Wrath (don’t ask…)
2. The Bills (father and son, both Bill)
1. Feed Bag…nice!

Top 5 Trail Towns Thus Far

5. NYC (it counts, got there from the trail)
4. Waynesboro, VA (Starbucks…what?)
3. Falls Village, CT (only because of the trail magic)
2. Palmerton, PA (super friendly people!)
1. Rutland, VT (just because it’s the first city in VT I’ve ever hung out in)

Top 5 Places I’ve Played Piano In While Hiking
5. Rutland, VT (piano is a bit out of tune, though)
4. Mohican Outdoor Center
3. Snuck into the Baptist church in Damascus, VA
2. Church hostel in Waynesboro, VA
1. Coffee Shop in Hot Springs, NC

Top 5 Favorite Foods on the Trail
5. Strawberry Fiber Poptarts
4. Cookies and Creme Poptarts
3. Anything Lipton
2. Ramen (sans packet) + Baby Red potatos + Tuna + Curry powder
1. Snickers…mmm…..

Top 5 Albums Listened to While Hiking as of Late
5. In Rainbows – Radiohead
4. Heartsong Live – Cedarville University’s Heartsong
3. Bela Fleck – Throw Down Your Heart
2. Turn Around – Jonny Lang
1. Life Light Up – Christy Nockles

Your turn!

Fun with Acrostics

Filed under: Blog Posts — chrishennig @ 9:30 pm August 6, 2009

Well….I’m in Vermont:

Very Eager, Rather Mighty Obstacles Near, Too.

Or…

Voila! Exiting Real Mud, Onto New Hampshire Thursday.

Ok, that one was cheating. Your turn.

In its defense, Vermont hasn’t been as muddy as Massachu– I don’t want to even talk about that state again. VT (which is normally nicknamed “Vermud” on the trail) has been quite pleasant…and a little muddy. We actually had two days of sun in a row to start the week! Something like a phenomenon lately! Everyone on and off the trail is commenting on how unusually wet this summer has been. “Global Wetting” instead of “Global Warming”?

I’m in the town of Rutland, VT, which I’m told is the second largest city in VT, a state with less than 700,000 residents, making it the second-least populated state in the union (behind Wyoming). For those of you who can’t remember the 3rd grade like me, Montpelier is the capital, named after a French city. Parlez-vous français? “La souris est en dessous de la table.” “Le chat est sur la chaise.” “Le singe est sur la branche.” -Eddie Izzard (for Matty).

2189-450Many of we first-time AT hikers are a bit anxious at what’s ahead. I’m currently traversing the Green Mountain range of VT — no mountains at 4,000 feet, no climbs much more than a few thousand feet at a time, mostly gradual at that. However, upon entering New Hampshire I’ll begin climbing in the White Mountain range. Mount Moosilauke @ 4,802ft — climb starts 5.5 miles away at 1,140 feet. Little Haystack @ 4,760ft + Mount Lincoln @ 5,089ft + Mount Lafayette @ 5,249 feet = these three occur within 2 miles of each other and the approach to Little Haystack starts less than 5 miles away at 1,450ft. And to name one more, Mount Washington @ 6,288ft — the second highest peak on the AT, as well as being “famous for its dangerously erratic weather, holding the record for the highest wind gust directly measured at the Earth’s surface, at 231 mph (372 km/h) on the afternoon of April 12, 1934.”  That’s just to name a few.

Then Maine happens, which I hear is just as difficult at the start as the Whites will have been to traverse.

However, I’m excited at the same time because everyone acknowledges this last stretch is the most beautiful part of the entire trail! And while I haven’t seen any yet, there’s talk of moose and porcupine! Did you know porcupine climbs trees? Crazy.

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