Dundas resident, Leo Moloughney set out to hike the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine on March 3rd, but may have to take an extended break from the rough hike.
The 71-year-old former HSR employee has hiked sections of the trail in previous years, but this year decided to take on the entire trail to raise funds for the Alzheimer Society of Hamilton and Halton. Moloughney’s father and uncle died as a cause of Alzheimer’s.
On March 15th Moloughney had traveled 109.8 miles of the trail, with a harrowing 2,076 miles to go. If Moloughney completes his goal, he will be one of the oldest people in the world to successfully hike the entire trail.
He aimed to hit the trail every morning by 5:30 with the goal of tackling 30 miles of terrain every day, completing the hike in 73 days. However, the weather has been unforgiving with Moloughney waking up to frozen water canteens, leaving him thirsty until he found a water source. The cold, wet conditions slowed his progress to about 15 miles a day.
“He’s taking a long trail break while he recovers from his lung problem. He was advised by a doctor, reminded that his body is not young like it once was,” posted his youngest son, Austin Moloughney, on Facebook.
Austin is running the Facebook page to give updates about the progress of his father’s hike. To follow Moloughney’s adventure search Leo’s AT Hike for Alzheimer Research.
The last update from the hike said Moloughney was staying with family for a few days in Virginia. He may travel to Arizona where he has more family, or, in the worst case, he may have to travel home for some proper rest. More hiking later in the year has not been ruled out, though.
The Appalachian Trail runs through Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.
Moloughney is still hoping to complete his hike and asks that a donation be made to the Alzheimer Society of Hamilton and Halton.