The White Mountains are widely recognized as the most challenging part of the Appalachian Trail. In the heart of the range stands Wildcat Mountain. Wildcat Mountain is one of the most well known ski resorts in New England. Its summit reaches 4,305 feet with sides consisting of ragged boulders and advanced terrain. Wounded soldier Danny Kennedy recently stood at the base of this mountain with a difficult decision to make. Should he risk severe injury by attempting to climb the mountain with only one good arm or do what most do and ride to the top on the provided gondola?
Most thru hikers opt out of the physical challenge and choose instead to ride one of the resorts gondolas to the top. They see the climb ahead and fear either injury or possible death from a slip or fall. Danny Kennedy is not your average hiker! Danny was given the choice to ride the gondola or to attempt the harrowing climb on his own. Without hesitation Danny chose to climb the mountain in spite of his debilitating injuries as a wounded veteran. We are thrilled that he not only made it to the top but that he made it look so easy.
During a critical section of the climb Danny turned on a GoPro camera. The following video gives you a first person perspective of what this experience was like for him. Hand over hand, boulder over boulder, he climbs to one of the most scenic views we've seen along the Appalachian Trail so far.