My most successful Hike-a-thon ever!

350.9 Miles Hiked and More than $10,200 Raised

It was my successful Hike-a-thon, ever!

Wow! I am still catching up on my rest and trying to catch up with my work after an amazing August. Since 2012 I have participated in the Washington Trails Association’s annual Hike-a-thon as a way to have a little fun and help give back to the trails that have enhanced my life. And trails have not only helped me with my livelihood as a guidebook author and outdoors writer, but as a refuge from the pandemic, political rancor, despair, and my own personal challenges.

And this year was especially challenging with my recent PMR diagnosis. I am managing my condition as best I can and pushed myself farther and harder than ever before. And you my wonderful friends and readers outdid yourselves with donations that will directly benefit our trails and enhance our outdoors lifestyles! Thanks!

For this Hike-a-thon I set three goals for myself. Three goals that I knew would have me working hard this to achieve. They were:

  • Raise $8,000 (beating my previous best)
  • Hike or run every day on a trail in the month of August (taking no days off)
  • And tally more than 325 miles for the month (to beating my previous best of 325 miles)

And I am ecstatic to announce that I met and/or exceeded every one of my goals! As of this writing because of the generosity of 118 of you (my record amount of donors to date) I have raised more than $10,200!

I did indeed hike or run a trail every day of the month alternating easy “rest” days on some of my local trails with hardcore mileage days in the backcountry. And I not only exceeded my 325 mile goal for the month-I exceeded it big time by completing 350.9 miles. This included a kick off day of 41 miles on the trail (my second longest day on the trail ever) and a grand finale on the trail with a 27.6 mile day! I did a handful of 20 milers in the mix too! This all averaged out to 11.3 miles a day. I’m beat!

While all of this was incredibly satisfying, one of my underlying motivators was trying to live my life to the maximum with my new health condition. I was in severe discomfort with limited range of motion just 8 months ago and thought that I would never be able to do high intensity days on the trail anymore. This summer and Hike-a-thon has helped recharged me and continue my path to trying to put my condition into remission.

And with the Pandemic still raging and all of the social unrest, political madness, natural disasters, and awful news–It was refreshing and recharging to become totally absorbed in my Hike-a-thon and so deeply satisfying to challenge myself—and exceed my expectations—and have such positive results to show afterward.

This whole process has recharged me and has given me reasons to stay hopeful while the outside world remains gloomy. I empathize with my fellow hikers and runners who are stressed, anxious, and depressed. These are indeed difficult times. Consider setting some goals for a greater good for yourself and community. It will help you stay positive and focused. We will persevere —and I believe that ultimately it will make many of us better people.

So a big thanks to all of you who donated to my hike-a-thon, accompanied me on the trail, and provided support. My hike-a-thon would not have been as successful without all of you. And if you donated, stay tuned for September 7th when I announce the winners of the Oboz Footwear hiking shoes (Thanks once again Oboz for donating them) and the Osprey Talon 11 Backpack (Big thanks to Brown’s Outdoor in Port Angeles for their donation).

And if you haven’t donated, you still have a few days to do so. You will automatically be entered into the Oboz drawing and become a WTA member. Just click here and make your donation! And to all Happy Hiking as we move into my favorite time of year to hit the trail!

And if you need some great suggestions to find excellent autumn hiking destinations, my books are packed with detailed info—including on many trails less traveled!

Check them out and Happy Hiking!


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