I chose to join a hike with HIKE for Mental Health to help stamp out the stigma of mental illness and conserve wilderness trails.
This is my story: Flying Crow
I may not be a thru-hiker but someday I’d love to try. I started a couple years ago locally doing CT’s DEEP Sky’s the Limits Challenges, started looking for more challenging and rewarding experiences. My ex back in 2015 mentioned that she wanted to try hiking Mt. Washington. You know we need to work on it, train for it, and it’s not that you are hiking mountains everyday. So we worked hard together locally on Lantern Hill, Bluff Point, Mount Monadnock, until the day we all took on Mount Washington. I joined her, her son Shane, his Girlfriend Maggie, the wee mee’s and Hike for Mental Health to raise awareness around the stigma of mental illness, raise money for programs and research and to help with the preservation of the trails. I joined them for personal reasons of my own to help me through depression and daily stresses. I find that through hiking I can clear my mind, focus better, find a better appreciation of life, but also appreciation of the world we call home! This is what I do! I do it because I can! I will continue to push myself to do more and achieve greater goals! I decided that I would be the first in my family to do a long distance backpacking on the Appalachian Trail. I know now that this hike is not an easy task and going to take time but I know it is something I can do. Just one step in front of the other and keep pushing forward. I started my hike in 2017 in my Hike for Love campaign. In 2018 i decided to continue my backpacking the Appalachian Trail for Hike for Mental Health. This year I will be continuing my Journey. In addition to the Appalachian Trail I will be wokring on New Hampshires 48 4000 Footer Challenge!
Other Hike for Mental Health Hikes that I have done:
– Craigs Point Preserve in New York
– Mount Killington in Vermont
– Mount Eisenhower in New Hampshire
– Mount Katahdin in Maine
– Mount Washington in New Hampshire
– Bear Mountain in New York
– Sunrise Mountain in New Jersey
– Appalachian Trail Section Hiking(completed 454.2 miles)
I started my first sections of the hike from the summit of Bear Mountain, NY heading North on the Appalachian Trail to CT 44 Salisbury, CT.
Covered 102.5 miles.
I started my next sections of the hike from Salisbury, CT and made it Melville Nauheim Shelter Woodford, VT.
Covered 111 miles.
March 10th I started from Springer Mountain Summit(the southern terminus point on the Appalachian Trail) and work my way North! One section at a time!
Covered 66.8 miles.
I continued my journey on the AT/LT in Vermont from Bennington VT 9 to the VT / NH Line
Covered 136.0 miles
Hiked an additional mileage in starting from Tiorati Lake to Bear Mountain 10.6 miles and then started from NJ Warwick Turnpike up to Tiorati Lake 27.3 miles.
2019 I’ve hiked 240.7 miles!
2020 I started this years hike at Delaware Water Gap, PA to US206 Culver’s Gap, NJ!
July 2020 I started back at VT/NH line hikes 18.1 miles.
2020 I’ve hiked 46.6 miles!
2017-2020 I have hiked 500.8 miles!
I finished my fourth state(NY, CT, MA, and VT) along the Appalachian Trail!
My goal was to complete 200 miles last year and did exceeded it! This year i was supposed to double it n do 400 miles on the Appalachian Trail but I know the importance to stay safe and healthy during these hard times! The Trail will be there another day but I will complete it if not this year 2022!
This is far from any of my hikes that I have done in the past as it challenges me to navigate the trail which is very long and terrain can vary in difficulty while carrying 50lbs+ upon my back (food, shelter, clothing, emergency kits and other essentials to help me survive). I have great respect to my fellow brothers and sisters of the trail that do these long distances backpacking in the backcountry. Every month I will be planning and backpacking to reach my goal. I love and enjoy the challenge as well as the adventure.
I love the trail, the people, the experiences. Being on the Trail is not only good exercise but it also a challenge! One can learn a lot about the world around us but learn about ourselves. It challenges our physical, mental and spiritual being! Tests our ability to go the distance. No matter how far or how high. It’s just one foot in front of the other! Happy Trails to all and Safe Travels!
I’m looking for help to reach my goal! $1, $5, $10, etc any donations and sponsors would be greatly appreciated! Like, Share and spread the word(family, extended family, friends of friends, and coworkers too) as a little goes a long way! I started off with donating $25!
I found my passion in hiking and through it I want to be able to help for Hike for Mental Health in give back to the community!
Would you will consider making a donation, leaving a message, or sharing this page?
Brandon “Flying Crow” Parenteau
1 in 4 families is affected by mental illness.
HIKE for Mental Health is a recognized 501(c)(3) nonprofit founded on the vision of a world in which everyone, including those who suffer mental illness, can find the simple joy of living.
Our mission is to alleviate the suffering of those afflicted by mental illness, eliminate the associated stigma, and foster responsible use of wilderness trails.
As an all-volunteer organization, we distribute 100% of contributions raised by our hikes.
- 80% funds scientific research to understand and treat mental illness
- 20% conserves national wilderness trails
Your donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by the IRS. Thank you for your support.
To learn more, visit hikeformentalhealth.org.
To join a hike click here.