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Gorilla Walker completes epic coastal USA trek

Kyran Young, the intrepid 'Gorilla Walker', has completed his 2,633-mile walk up the eastern coast of North America

19-year-old Kyran Young set off on his adventure 141 days ago, determined to raise thousands of pounds for gorilla conservation, a cause close to his heart.

He has not only succeeded in this goal (with more than £10,500 banked so far), but he has been successful in raising awareness of the plight of the last remaining gorillas in the wild. As well as being interviewed by local radio and TV stations as he crossed their patches on his trek from the border of Mexico to the border of Canada, Kyran has also attracted the attention of CNN, bringing the message of gorilla conservation to millions of homes across the United States and beyond.

Upon reaching EC Manning Provincial Park, the end of his journey, the Gorilla Walker sent a message to his supporters around the world via his blog. He wrote: “For some time I have thought long and hard about what I would say in this last article when I finished, and I could not come up with anything good enough, or anything that felt right.

“How can I sum up four and a half months of endeavour, hardship, pure joy, endless horizons, and ultimately, a very personal and unique experience that only I can truly understand, from my own perspective? I cannot. So, I will end by saying I was very lucky to be able to do what I have done, and what was that exactly? It felt like a lot of other things but really, to walk a long way!”

Kyran is expected to return to the UK on Sunday 11th October, with a hero’s reception waiting for him in his hometown of Stroud, Gloucestershire. Among those set to be welcoming him back from his travels will be Gorilla Organization Chairman and world-famous primatologist Ian Redmond OBE, who has followed Kryan as he racked up the miles on the Pacific Crest Trail and offered him words of encouragement along the way.

Celebrating his achievement, Jillian Miller, Executive Director of the Gorilla Organization, said: “The threats facing gorillas in the wild aren’t about to go away any time soon. So, they need a new generation of conservationists to take up their fight. Kyran is the perfect example of a young man who is passionate about wildlife, and in particular gorillas, and who has been ready to go the extra mile to help them. We are all so proud of his efforts and send our warmest congratulations to him on this incredible achievement.”

The Gorilla Walker is still accepting donations through his own website, where you can also find his journal entries from the road, as well as pictures from his adventures.