Man to trek across country

Mike Bevins is a 408-pound man from New Hampshire walking to California from Folly Beach. He's walking to find himself and to lose weight, and he is carrying a 100-pound backpack on his journey.

Mike Bevins plans to walk from sea to shining sea.

His journey began Wednesday at Folly Beach. After a wrong turn, he wound up in Mount Pleasant on Thursday. Frustrated, he spent the night in a hotel room east of the Cooper, and on Friday made his way back across the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.

"I am off to a horrible start. My feet are already hurting. It's only going to get worse," Bevins said.

He hopes to get healthy on his walk across America and that cupid will strike.

"It's a walk for weight loss and love. One of the biggest reasons is weight loss. Something's gotta change," he said Friday.

Bevins, 22, wants to have kids and live a long time. He fears those things won't happen in his current physical state. He wants to shed at least 100 pounds.

"At the rate I'm going, I'm going to die at a young age," he said.

He weighs 408 pounds and has always been heavy. He carries a 100-pound backpack that holds clothes, a laptop computer, a tent, a sleeping bag and cell phone, among other items. Bevins, a truck driver, decided he had to make a drastic change.

"It's a hard thing losing weight," he said. His mother and sister had gastric bypass surgery to shed pounds, but he didn't want to do that. "Why go into surgery when I can commit myself to this?"

Back home in Deering, N.H., it was too easy to fall back into the bad habits that made his weight problem worse. His marriage ended in divorce. "Things just weren't going my way. I was trying to think of something I could do to change my life," he said.

He anticipates his journey will take six months. He plans to complete it at the pier in Santa Monica, Calif. He expects the first month will be the hardest part of the walk but that it will become easier as he sheds weight and eats right.

He took a bus from his New Hampshire home to Charleston. It was too cold back home to start his walk there. After searching the Internet, he found Folly Beach.

"It just seemed like a good starting place. I'm hoping this journey will teach me a lot of things I don't already know," he said.