SWEET HOME, OR (CBS/KVAL) -- Walking across the country is something Donna Stokes has wanted to do since she was a teenager, but she says life always got in the way. Now at 52, she's on her way to check that off the list.

She said, "I think that this challenge is not as physical as you think, it's mental. I think if you can get through the mental-ness of it, that's what's going to make it or break it."

Stokes is looking at about another 2500 miles and at least five more months on the road not in a car, but on foot.

Stokes started her cross country journey at the Mid-Willamette Valley YMCA in Albany, Oregon on Saturday and hopes to finish five months from now on the East Coast.

Donna says she expect to walk about seven million steps on her journey, but she says you can't worry about that, it's just one step at a time.

She said, "My two biggest fears are being hit by a car of course, and be startled while I sleep alone."

Without a support team, stokes says she's going it alone, dodging log trucks and cars.

But she is prepared, calling police ahead of time and pushing her cart full of essentials of camping gear, food and water, a GPS device, a cell phone and bear spray.

She says she's doing it to hopefully inspire someone else. She said, "What are you waiting for? You know, you only get one chance and maybe this is a little extreme, I understand that, but something smaller that you've always wanted to do that you'll regret not doing when you're older."

Stokes says she hopes to be home sometime in October.

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