Three Hundred Zeroes: Lessons of the Heart on the Appalachian Trail
Dennis Blanchard's promise to his brother haunted him for over forty years. Finally, when there were no more excuses, he set out on the Appalachian Trail to fulfill that promise. He learned that walking in the wilderness can reconnect one with a Norman Rockwell America that at times seems long lost and forgotten. The difficulties encountered walking over 2,200 miles are easily underestimated and trouble can begin long before setting a first step on the trail. Blanchard's introspective demonstrates that bears, rattlesnakes and challenging terrain may be far less formidable than some of life's more subtle dangers.
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This is humorous, engaging, and inspirational read about the At. In Three Hundred Zeroes, Dennis Blanchard describes his “Lessons of the Heart on the Appalachian Trail.” After walking about 600 miles, Dennis leaves the trail for a six-artery bypass. In hiker parlance, a day off is termed a “zero” day — a day with zero miles walked. Three-hundred-zero days later, he returns to the trail to complete his life-long ambition. As he walks through the heart of America, Dennis meets townspeople, trail angels, and other hikers. His stories about these people are humorous, endearing, and, at times, motivational. Dennis not only describes the people he meets but also his encounter with bears, rattlesnakes, moose, mice, and other wildlife. What would you do when confronted with a charging bear?
Dennis walked with the brother’s Purple Heart; fulfilling a commitment to his brother to someday walk the Appalachian Trail with him. His devotion to the brother killed in Vietnam is very touching.
Additionally, the book has a theme related to Amateur Radio. Dennis has a goal to make amateur radio contacts in each state. Amateur radio enthusiast may enjoy his descriptions of his attempts to contact other radio “hams.” For those who know little of amateur radio, this is a great opportunity to learn about the hobby without having too much exposure.
This is a must read book not only for those contemplating hiking the AT but for anyone interested in adventure, outdoor life, or middle-America. I found this book inspirational and motivating as well as entertaining.