My name is Johnathan Mecklin and if youre visiting this page then you already know that i’m planning on thru hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2020. I am beyond excited to take this journey and I’m so thankful for all of the support i’ve already received.
I first heard about the Appalachian Trail when I was in high school from my father. I still remember looking over all of the maps and guides from the ATC and talking about our plans to section hike the trail. Unfortunately, life got in the way, as it often does. Dad continued to work hard to provide for the family and I graduated high school and joined the Marine Corps. Our plans to section hike the trail were put on the backburner, if not completely forgotten.
When I returned from my first deployment overseas, I realized that I needed so much than what life was giving me. I was sleepwalking through life and accepting the comfortable niche that I had slipped into. The following equation began to compose itself:
(Searching for purpose) + (Need to be outside) + (Overwhelming desire to run away) = X
I had all of the ingredients for a Christopher McCandless “Into the Wild” style adventure. Despite my desire to run, I was contractually obligated to serve another two years before I could see my dreams come into fruition. For the moment, all I could do is continue to try to solve for X.
And that’s how we got here. The idea of thru hiking the AT appeals to me for the same reasons that joining the Marine Corps did. This is a monumental task that is going to require, more than anything else, support from people just like you.
I’m registering my hike with Hike for Mental Health for a variety of reasons. I’ve chosen this organization specifically because of the ways that I’ve seen mental illness impact those around me. I’m setting a goal of $2190 because of the distance of the AT (2190 miles). If you donate to this fundraiser, I can’t thank you enough! Regardless of if you donate or not, you can follow my journey on social media.
Facebook: Johnathan Mecklin
Youtube: John Mecklin
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.