Brian Ford, Owner HBF Outdoors, LLC. – In 2016 I reached out to some friends with an idea for an adventure that would give back to @gear_forward By September 2016 I launched#LHX2017, formed a team, and we set out to collect donations to help kids get outside. By April 2017 the team and I backpacked the LHHT, connected IRL and experienced an adventure.
Now it’s time to do it again. As the founder of HBF Outdoors, I am honored to coordinate #LHX2018for an adventure and experience. The team will focus on connecting with their local community hands-on in support of Gear Forward. In April 2018 we’ll spend five days on the LHHT for an outdoor adventure.
Scott Gauvin is the Founder and Executive Director of Gear Forward, a nationwide non-profit that collects unused outdoor gear for donation to youth in need looking to experience the outdoors. Scott is also the blogger behind Hiking Forward. Scott grew up in New England where he honed is outdoor skills growing up in the Boy Scouts of America and later earning his Eagle Scout Award. Scott now lives in Illinois with his young family and is working to pass on the love of the outdoor world and the skills he has honed to his daughters as they travel to national parks around the United States.
Dane Cramer grew up in rural Somerset County, PA. In around 1992, he went on his first backpacking trip on the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail (LHHT). Little did he know that that first trip would launch a love affair with this local trail. As of 2017, Dane has thru-hiked the LHHT six times and has hiked each individual section so often that it would be impossible to estimate the number of miles he has accumulated on this local pathway.
Having an interest in writing, Dane began to publish his hiking journals online in 2000. In 2007, Dane published his first book, which was written about and for the LHHT, called, “Romancing the Trail: Six Days Atop Laurel Ridge.”
Dane manages a website that features information about the LHHT. His hiking journals and other writings can be found at www.featheredprop.com
In addition to backpacking the LHHT, Dane has also hiked sections of the Appalachian Trail as well as trails out west. In addition to chronicling his hikes in writing, he also enjoys shooting videos, which can be found on his Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/featheredprop
Dane lives in Somerset with his wife, Cynthia. Dane has worked as an investigator for over 30 years. He and Cynthia are active in their church, and hold weekly Bible studies at their home as well as the county jail.
Jennifer Potts (my friends and family call me Jen!) My outdoor story starts when I was young, growing up at our family lake house surrounded by woods, giant rock piles, and creeks to explore. I was a muddy, frog catching, scraggly tomboy and could always be found coming in reluctantly when the streetlights came on at night.
One afternoon in August that summer I went on a camping trip and ended up outside, sitting in a cold spring fed creek in the pouring rain, with my eyes closed and my arms open. All of that aforementioned fear was washed away. It was like I was cleansed of the negativity I had been basking in for months.