TEMPLETON, MASS. (WHDH) -  An East Templeton man raised thousands of dollars for a noble cause by hiking the length of the Appalachian Trail at the age of 71.

David Manca says he completed the daunting, 2,200-mile-long trail in a little more than four months. His journey started down in Georgia and wrapped up in Maine.

“I’ve done a couple short hikes but not a hiker per se,” Manca said of his hiking experience prior to the monumental undertaking.

He said he walked 10 to 12 hours each day and faced extreme weather and physical obstacles.

“There were a few quite dangerous and when you get to river you hike alone no one there to watch you cross if something happens, you’re on your own,” he said.

The driving force keeping him going was the donations he was raising for the Tunnel to Towers Foundation, which raises money to support programs that honor first responders and military personnel who make extraordinary sacrifices every day.

Manca, a veteran from a military family, said it’s a cause close to his heart.

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