AND THEN THERE WAS KLING

GORUCK Selection's sole-survivor reminds us of why we do what we do.
Hero final go ruck header

Sep 10, 2013 | By Andy Forch

The undercurrent of Huckberry, our raison d'être if you will, is to inspire our readers to lead more active, adventurous, and thoughtful lives. But as is so often the case when "inspire" is central to the endeavor, the students inevitably become the teachers.

There are more examples than we can count in our two-and-a-half short years of existence, but one example that recently moved us is Huckberry reader and GORUCK Selection-slayer Eric Kling. The story goes a little something like this...

Back in January 2013, Eric Kling (Roster #009) was one of 19 madmen who signed up to participate in GORUCK Selection 002 in Neptune Beach, FL. For the uninitiated, Selection is 48 hours of good livin' where the singular goal is to finish and the tag line is, "this probably isn't for you." For a taste, watch this video.

Selection is sort of the Super Bowl of GORUCK events, and so we always follow along with much anticipation on GORUCK's Facebook page. When Selection updates hit your Facebook wall, it's like a Space Shuttle count-down: and then there were 10, 9, 8 etc.

Selection 002 was no different, and with about 24 hours to go, Selection was in danger of a zero pass rate.

And then there was Kling.

When we found out that one of our most loyal customers ended Selection 002 as the lone man standing (read about his journey here), we sent him a six-pack of Bud Heavies and a Lucky Rhino as a congrats.

Upon receiving the package, Kling shared a picture on Instagram, downing the Buds. We thought all six were goners. Well, we thought wrong.

Fast forward seven months later, and I receive a notification on my phone that Kling has tagged @Huckberry in an Instagram photo.

In the photo, Kling is downing a Bud on the summit of Mt. Yale wearing a shemagh, Icebreaker shirt, and Randolph Aviator sunglasses, and celebrating a succesful GORUCK Ascent.

But Kling isn't just drinking any Bud; it's the one he saved from the six-pack we sent him for successfully completing Selection. Needless to say we were touched, inspired - all that stuff - and most of all, thankful, to be a part of a community of people pushing the boundaries of what's possible.

In fact, we loved the 6-pack declaration - toast a goal by drinking 5 beers and holding out 1 beer for when you complete said goal - so much that we're going to roll it into an upcoming initiative. More to come on that.

And so to you Mr. Kling, Huckberry co-founders Richard Greiner and Andy Forch, along with the rest of the Huckberry team, salute you.

Thanks to our buddies at GORUCK for allowing us to use their pictures for #1-5, #9. Photographer and Huckberry reader Phil Wall shot the badass video of  Kling, which can be seen here, and also took a few of the photos in the Facebook updates above. To read about Kling's completion of Selection 002 in his own words, head on over to the GORUCK blog.