For some people, the idea of walking from Milner to Steamboat Springs would seem crazy. But for Anna Harrington, the trek was just part of a much larger journey.
“When I get done I will have walked more that 3,400 miles," Harrington said Tuesday before starting her walk from Milner to the base of Rabbit Ears Pass. Once she reached that point, she was going to catch a ride back to Steamboat Springs, where she planned to spend the night with friends and then start Wednesday’s journey over the pass.
“I’ve always wanted to walk across the United States," Harrington said. “When I heard that the Shriners were going to close a couple of hospitals, I decided it was a pretty good reason to start walking.”
The Shriners Hospitals for Children offer care for children with orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries and cleft lip. The children are eligible for care regardless of the patients’ ability to pay.
The Craig Daily Press reported that Harrington’s nephew received help from the Sacramento, California, Shriners Hospital, which helped inspire her cross-country journey.
Harrington is using her own dream to walk across the country to help support Shriners Hospitals. She has formed a website, www.annaswalk.com, where people can contribute or show support.
Harrington began her journey March 1 in Astoria, Oregon, and plans to finish in Boston sometime in mid-October. Between those dates, she will travel an estimated 20 miles per day and already has passed through Oregon, Idaho, Utah and Colorado.
“The people I’ve met have been gracious and amazing,” Harrington said.
When she set out, she expected to spend a lot of nights camped out alongside the road but said she has come across a number of hosts who have taken her in and helped her out on the journey.
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966