The woman who walked along America faced bears and wolves on an epic 2,653-mile journey

A brave hiker confronted with bears and a wolf walked five million steps traveling across America on foot.

Mary Mansfield walked 25 miles every day for six months on her dream trip from Campo California to Manning Park in British Columbia.

The 40-year-old from Hadfield, near Glossop, said it was the hardest thing she ever did.

Mary quit her job as a medical sales consultant and began the journey after abandoning daily medicines for her paralyzing headaches.

By the age of 25, she had suffered from chronic migraine syndrome, which doctors have struggled to control.

However, they miraculously seemed to disappear within a few months of giving up meat.

Mary, coming home from the November challenge, said: “It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done and it’s probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

Mary is having dinner in California, May 2019

“I didn’t notice my headache at all and took a tablet only once every six months.

“The best thing was to get away from it all and enjoy a sense of escape.

“It was like I was in a completely different world and I was in complete solitude and peace.

“I was alone most of the time and I’m incredibly proud of what I’ve done.”

But solo hiking didn’t come without her difficulties, as Mary had some frightening accidents along the way. He fell on a rock in the snow in California and broke two ribs, and almost fell off a cliff where he had to lift himself off the edge with an ice ax.

Mary went through four pairs of shoes on the 2,653-mile journey known as the Pacific Crest Trail.

He carried a bag with a tent, a pair of spare clothes, pots and pans for cooking, basic survival equipment and a GPS satellite navigation system to keep it on track.

Everything Mary has prepared for her gigantic trek

Carrying only ten days of food at a time, he crossed towns and villages every two weeks to collect supplies and get a rare night’s sleep in a hotel.

Traveling alone, leaving behind her partner, Derek Fox, 53, who had stayed at home, Mary would have met other walkers along the way.

He crossed warm desert landscapes in southern California, dense forests in Central America and snow-capped mountain ranges to Canada.

Mary remembered the moment when she was walking along a trial in a dense forest when she noticed a brown bear blocking her path.

“I was just walking, I looked up and saw a brown bear about 220 feet away,” he said.

“It was a frightening moment but it went in the opposite direction.

Mary said it was the most difficult thing she had ever done

“I was also face to face with a wolf in California, but he ran away as soon as he saw me.”

Now at home, the experienced hiker is planning to write a book based on his adventures and to inspire others to travel the world.

He added: “I have suffered from migraines for 15 years and they have had a huge impact on my life.

“I was in medicine every day and just doing basic things was a struggle for me.

North Cascades, Washington state

“I decided I wanted to do the Pacific Coast Trail in June 2018 after six months of vegan diet.

“It is something that I have always wanted to do but that I have never felt capable of.

“The idea is to do it without stopping and live only with what you have on your back.

“It was the best experience of my life, without a doubt.

“It turned out to be the best pain reliever I could have wished for.”


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