February 2012 I was diagnosed with an inoperable grade II brain tumor. The doctor told me I would have 3 - 5 years of medicine controlled symptoms before things started to go south.
So with that diagnosis I decided to "go south" a little earlier.
Less than 1000 people total have completed a thru-hike headed southbound on the Appalachian Trail and as far as I can tell I will be the first to attempt it with an active brain tumor. A Southbound thru-hike usually starts in June or July on top of Mount Katahdin in Maine and travels approximately 2,184 miles to Springer Mountain in Georgia finishing up by late November.
The plan is to write a book and a companion photo journal based off my experiences on the trail. I am sure there will be complications, drama, fun and hopefully a new outlook on life for people who refuse to let cancer dictate their daily being.
My Life with a tumor blog is www.going-south.org
I will also be keeping a trail journal on the Dusty Camel Website
Facebook fan page for the books: https://www.facebook.com/goingsouthAT
My Twitter feed: @beholderbill
As it stands right now I will be using Lulu.com for my publishing needs and sending my trail notes back home to base camp to be edited and typed up as I go so should the unthinkable happen on the trail the book and the attempt stays on record. With your help you can make my dream come true and help others facing impossible odds realize that a diagnosis is not the end of the story it is just the beginning.
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