Steve Hess of Mount Wolf is almost halfway to a goal he set for himself four decades ago.

Hess has always stayed in good shape and now he is walking the entire length of the 2,180 mile Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. In spite of his conditioning he has already lost 20 pounds. He hikes about 15 miles a day.

"Physically it's harder than you think it's gonna be. It's very strenuous, very vigorous," he says while stopping at the Applachian Trail Conservancy in Harpers Ferry, W.Va., last week. "At times it's extremely boring. You can walk for miles and miles and you don't have any overlooks. So you look for flowers and birds and different kinds of trees."

On Sunday, Hess plans on meeting with family at Pine Grove Furnace in Cumberland County, the trail's official halfway point. And then it's on to Mount Katahdin, Maine, or as trail hikers know it, the end of a long rewarding experience.

There is a York Dispatch video of Hess along the Appalachian Trail. You can watch it at Youtube.com/yorkdispatchvideo. Bill Bowden photo