By the time kayaker Andy Bugh reaches the Gulf of Mexico he will have traveled roughly 4,000 miles traversing four rivers along the way. Bugh stopped over in the Mississippi River town of Helena Thursday just in time for the Wild Hog Motorcycle Rally & Music Festival, though he arrived by kayak rather than a Harley-Davidson.

 

By the time kayaker Andy Bugh reaches the Gulf of Mexico he will have traveled roughly 4,000 miles traversing four rivers along the way. Bugh stopped over in the Mississippi River town of Helena Thursday just in time for the Wild Hog Motorcycle Rally & Music Festival, though he arrived by kayak rather than a Harley-Davidson.
Bugh began his trek in Montana in the Centennial Mountains on the Continental Divide back on July 6, 2011.
“I traveled more than a 1,000 miles before I got out of Montana,” commented Bugh.
Bugh made his way to New Madrid, Mo. in November and got back on the river about a week and a half ago. He hopes to reach the Gulf of Mexico in about three weeks. Meanwhile, Bugh soaked up a little local color here in Helena and departed mid-morning Monday.
“This is something I have always wanted to do,” said Bugh. “Some told me that I read too many Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer stories.”
According to Bugh, he mentioned making such a journey to his wife in passing as one of those once-in-a lifetime opportunities.
“She told me that I should ‘go for it’,” he said. “So, here I am.”
Bugh calls his journey, “an expedition for education” because he is trying to generate awareness concerning the construction of a school for deaf children in Honduras. He said without the facility the hearing impaired children of that country would not be able to obtain an academic education.
The construction of the school began back in 2003 and is open to youngsters in pre-kindergarten through the seventh grade.
“We want to add a grade each year until we have a school for students through the 12th grade,” reported Bugh.
Bugh added that he has a background in construction.
“I have met a lot of awesome people along the way,” stated Bugh. “I have been befriended by fishermen, park rangers and hotel managers. A lot of people have brought me food and gone out of their way to help me.”
When asked about the people of Helena, he replied, “Well, I have only been here an hour or so but so far every one I have met have been very friendly. It seems like a real nice town but it is sad to see so many old structures boarded up and vacant.”
Before leaving, Bugh said he was interested in finding out a little bit about the history of the community. He said he planned to join some locals for some fishing along the banks of the Mighty Mississippi and perhaps taking in some of the sounds of the Wild Hog Music Festival.
For more information about Bugh’s trip, contact him at andyburgh@gmail.com or to learn more about the school for the deaf check out expedition4education.org.