Late last year I was inspired by this spunky ginger-haired woman who, she was finishing up her final dozen hikes on her own Quest for finishing the 52 Hike Challenge in a single year. I thought it was impressive that she had decided to commit to 52 hilke for the whole of 2018. At 52 hikes, that’s one hike a week on average. While we were on a hike at Gothic Basin, it got me thinking about what my hiking/mountain running frequency was like already. The big difference meant committing to more driving but besiedes thtat, with how often I already went hiking, I thought to myself this would be an incredible challenge and shouldn’t be too difficult to suceed at. Simply knowing that I don’t go hiking every week but at the same time that on some weekends I had gone on multiple hikes, and there were even times when I had done the occasional weekday hike after a hard day of work, or even to start my day, with that knowledge it seemed that hitting 52 was something I could probably achieve fairly easily. Her challenge became my challenge, and it came at the perfect time.

When I found about this, it was around the time I was about to have surgery on my left hip. Knowing this was going to be my challenge for 2019 gave me a great carrot on a stick to chage for after I had a life-changing surgery which has allowed me to remember what it’s like to live a pain-free life. In October of 2018, October 26th, to be exact, I had surgery on my right hip. The labrum had torn in an accident that involved rolling down a mountainside in Vernon, NJ in a utility vehicle that I was the passenger of four years prior. With this hard reset and the timing of my recovery leaving me capable of doing mild hikes by early January, I set out to complete the fun challenge of completing at least 52 hikes in 2019. The reality is, I’ll probably be able to do a few more than 52 but who knows what life will throw my way. Everything over 52 will be a bonus, but no matter what, I will hit 52 in 2019.

For the remainder of 2019, I will share my many hikes here on this post and on my Instagram page. You can follow the adventure, and maybe even tag along if you’re up for the challenge of keeping up with me during one of these outings. Sometimes, I’m down for a slower hike, but most are at maximum effort. Request a discussion and maybe we can plan an adventure together!

Overtime I will write individual posts for a lot of these hikes and will link to those posts from here. A few companies and organizations I would like to thank are the US Forest Service, Washington State Parks, National Parks, Washington Trails Association, Suunto, All Trails, Garmin, all of you make my adventures fun, safe, and reliable. In future posts, you can expect links to trail pages, reviews/recaps, and Strava data from my excursion as well as photos and videos.

I look forward to sharing all my experiences with you and hope you find the inspiration to go have your own adventures in endurance.

Hike #38

To Be Determined

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What can I say, this weekend was one hell of a weekend for me. If you want the full scoop, stay tuned for my extensive blog post all about the race, in the mean time here are some quick facts. It all started in Easton, WA. A clockwise run through the Cascades that would amount to 100 Miles, 23k’+ of elevation gain, an upset stomach, 5 bee stings, lots of peaks, lot of valleys, 17 aid stations, 7 of which @thedoublenn had crew access and the best views! The course low point was the start at the Fire Station at 2,140’ and the highest point came near the end atop Thorpe Mountain at 5,840’. The run consisted of 70% trails, 26% forest service roads, and 4% of painfully paved roads. While it took me nearly 50 miles to start feeling somewhat normal, in the end I think it was to my benefit that this happened, it kept me in check and forced me to keep a lot of reserves in my tank. Once I did start feeling good, I was able to run a lot during the second half. In the end I finished the race in 32 hours and 46 minutes. It’s not nearly as fast as I’d hoped I’d be, but it didn’t matter, with my torn hip repaired and working the way it should, I was able to show up and earn my belt buckle. At long last, I finally joined the 100-mile club this past weekend. It feels damn good too. But of course, I couldn’t have done it without the tremendous help of all the volunteers and most of all my wonderful adventure partner, Erinn. Thank you to everyone who helped me get here, from my surgeon, Dr. King, to my PT @pnwgodfreys over at @vidaintegratedhealth who helped me fully recover. Also my family, who brought me up in a healthy, fit environment that continues to fuel me today. Now, it’s time to try my luck at the Western States lottery. Oh, yeah, and I guess that means #hike37complete. 😆 #CascadeCrest100MileEnduranceRun #CCC100 #CascadeCrest100 #Hike37Complete #52HikesChallenge #Hike37of52 #UltraMarathon #UltraRunner #AltraRunner #LonePeak4.0 #SuuntoSpartanUltra #PNWHiker #PNWAdventure #PNWonderland #AdventurePartners #LiveYourLife #ThatEnduranceGuy #HerRusticAdventure #ThisLifeWeLive #OptOutside #GoOutside #LiveWorthLiving #OurVariedAdventures #MakeEnduranceGreatAgain #MEGA

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This was one incredible weekend packed with two more hikes filled with the most incredible views from the tops of some scenic mountain ridges. On Thursday evening, @the.double.nn and I set out for a weekend of backpacking in the #OlympicNationalPark. We decided to take most of the Grand Pass Trail down to Gladys Lake but Erinn mapped out an alternative route that took us along this ridge you see in the third picture. It’s an old used trail that is mostly unused now but still accessible should you have the courage to scurry along it. I took the high ridgeline and followed it all the way to the saddle. It was an awesome bouldering session especially with 45 lbs in the pack. Haha. To the left of the saddle we continued on to the top of Moose Mountain and then down to Gladys Lake where we camped for the evening. When we woke the next morning with nonstop rain we decided to pull the plug as the campsite wasn’t as great as it had appeared the day before, a puddle formed under me. We packed up and climbed the endless switchback to get ourselves out of the gorgeous wildflower covered valley. It was an absolutely awesome time even though the weather wasn’t completely on our side. I can’t wait to come back and explore more of the Olympic National Park! #Hike35Complete #Hike36Complete #52HikesChallenge #Hike35of52 #Hike36of52 #PNWHiker #PNWAdventure #PNWonderland #AdventurePartners #LiveYourLife #ThatEnduranceGuy #HerRusticAdventure #ThisLifeWeLive #OptOutside #GoOutside #LiveWorthLiving #HappyCamper #SusanTheSubaru #OurVariedAdventures

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This was one incredible weekend packed with two more hikes filled with the most incredible views from the tops of some scenic mountain ridges. On Thursday evening, @the.double.nn and I set out for a weekend of backpacking in the #OlympicNationalPark. We decided to take most of the Grand Pass Trail down to Gladys Lake but Erinn mapped out an alternative route that took us along this ridge you see in the third picture. It’s an old used trail that is mostly unused now but still accessible should you have the courage to scurry along it. I took the high ridgeline and followed it all the way to the saddle. It was an awesome bouldering session especially with 45 lbs in the pack. Haha. To the left of the saddle we continued on to the top of Moose Mountain and then down to Gladys Lake where we camped for the evening. When we woke the next morning with nonstop rain we decided to pull the plug as the campsite wasn’t as great as it had appeared the day before, a puddle formed under me. We packed up and climbed the endless switchback to get ourselves out of the gorgeous wildflower covered valley. It was an absolutely awesome time even though the weather wasn’t completely on our side. I can’t wait to come back and explore more of the Olympic National Park! #Hike35Complete #Hike36Complete #52HikesChallenge #Hike35of52 #Hike36of52 #PNWHiker #PNWAdventure #PNWonderland #AdventurePartners #LiveYourLife #ThatEnduranceGuy #HerRusticAdventure #ThisLifeWeLive #OptOutside #GoOutside #LiveWorthLiving #HappyCamper #SusanTheSubaru #OurVariedAdventures

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The Enchantments 🏔🐐🐿🐾🌲🍄🌸🌼🌞 Day 4 This was surprisingly the most challenging day for the trip, originally we planned to stay 5 days and 4 nights but when one of our party members experienced some pain from a reoccurring injury to their ankle, the decision to cut the trip a night short was ultimately made as it would result in a less painful exit from this magical place. That morning, was when the re-injury occurred and as we made our trek from Perfection Lake, down to Leprechaun Lake and Lake Vivian, it became clear that the injury was slowing her down quite a bit. Knowing this was mostly downhill, that I have a race to train for, and that my friend was injured, I decided to run ahead and drop my pack at a checkpoint, then I would run back and fourth and shuttle her bag to each stopping point as we made our way out of the Enchantments. The first spot we stopped at was Upper Snow Lake, then Lower, and then Nada Lake. I ran back and fourth, up and down the pass from Upper Snow Lake to Lower Snow Lake. By the end of the day, I racked up a total of 22.26 miles, but overall it was fairly flat, only 2,291’ of elevation gain over all those miles isn’t THAT bad. I was happy to help my friend and have some fun running up and down these mountains some more. It was one hell of a trip, and I couldn’t have had a better group to enjoy this wonderful experience with. We went back to a friend of the group’s house and enjoyed some much earned grub. My post Enchantments keto meal was on point. Keto Pizza, 2x Kobe Burger Patties, and a few Brussel Sprouts with Bacon. #nom #hike33complete #stoked #theenchantments #goldenticket #corezoneenchantments #corezone #hike33of52 #hike33 #52hikechallenge #gooutside #optoutside #liveyourlife #aasgardpass #goats #mountaineering #backpacking #lovemylife #9monthsposthipsurgery #allthehikes #bestweekofmylife #unbelievableviews #alpinewilderness #alpinebeauty #thisisthelife #pnwwonderland #pnw #ilovepnw #bethegoat

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The Enchantments Day 3: This was my day. After waking up to a bunch of goats outside my tent, I quickly got ready for the day. Prior to leaving for The Enchantments I told my crew of my plans to summit Dragontail Peak during our stay. For nearly 2 years I have pined to summit the 🐉 that looms over Colchuck Lake. Within 15 minutes of my departure of camp a storm rolled into the Core and without any real notice, it started to hail. Quickly, I found cover under a boulder with just enough overhang to seek shelter. Within a few minutes the storm passed and I was on my way. Just before I started navigating the rocky talus that defined this mountains ridge and led to the snowy saddle that leads to the back side of the mountain for the final climb, I met a guy by the name of Cyrus who looked like he was a fellow ultrarunner. It was as I was sitting on a rock finishing a quick piss and eating a Vermont Jerky stick that I saw him pop around the corner on his way up. I introduced myself, asked if he was headed up Dragontail and when he said he was, asked if I could join. To my luck, he was all for it. Adventure Ensued. Over the next few hours, Cyrus and I ran all around the Core Zone tagging peaks one at a time. From Dragontail, we traversed some ridges, dropped back down by skiing in our shoes on some snow sections, then we summited Little Annapurna, dropped down again, this time we took a dip in Crystal Creek before we finished with a summit of McClellan Peak. We made it back to my camp an hour and a half before the latest time I told my group I would be back by. Pure bliss took over me when I arrived. I was in heaven. A dream had come true, I had ran the ridges of some of the mountains in the Enchantments and on top of that I made a new friend! All that excitement was followed by one of the most dramatic sunsets I’ve ever witnessed. By far one of the best days of my life. #hike32complete #stoked #theenchantments #goldenticket #corezoneenchantments #corezone #hike32of52 #hike32 #52hikechallenge #gooutside #optoutside #liveyourlife #aasgardpass #mountaineering #backpacking #lovemylife #9monthsposthipsurgery #allthehikes #bestweekofmylife #unbelievableviews

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The Enchantments Day 2: We woke up, and did the morning routine of eating and making coffee. Since I am currently rocking the #ketodiet for my upcoming attempt at the #CascadeCrest100, my morning coffee is made with Kerrygold butter, coconut oil, and protein powder, which is about 700 calories. In addition to that I used my @jetboil with pot holder and my @seatosummit pan to heat up the two premade eggs sou vides from @costco I bought for the trip plus half an avocado. With all that, I had myself a meal with over 1400 calories to start the day I wouldn’t need to eat for a long time. Once we finished fueling and taking care of personal needs, we packed up our campsites and made our way up the wicked ascent that is Aasgard’s Pass. This brutal ascent has over 2000’ of gain in less than 2 miles. It’s very steep and sometimes it can be a treacherous climb especially with a heavy pack. On this day, it wasn’t too bad, just a little hot, an earlier start would have been helpful. Nevertheless, we made it to the top successfully and we eventually stopped to camp in the Core Zone at Perfection Lake where we would spend the next two nights. We saw a LOT of #mountaingoats along the way, it was awesome. #hike31complete #stoked #theenchantments #goldenticket #corezoneenchantments #corezone #hike31of52 #hike31 #52hikechallenge #gooutside #optoutside #liveyourlife #aasgardpass #goats #mountaineering #backpacking #lovemylife #9monthsposthipsurgery #allthehikes #bestweekofmylife #unbelievableviews #alpinewilderness #alpinebeauty #thisisthelife #pnwwonderland #pnw #ilovepnw

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Last week was without question one of the best weeks of my life! Like I told my friends, the only thing that could have made the past week any better would have been to have @the.double.nn along for the adventure. Thanks to our friend Andria, who captured the “Golden Ticket” 🎫 for the Enchantments Core Zone, 7 of us were able to enjoy the peace, tranquility, and relaxation induced by one of the most sacred Hiking/Camping spots in our majestic state of WA and probably in all of the US too. The Enchantments consists of an 18-mile through hike and every year there is a lottery for campsites during the warm and dry months. It’s quite difficult to get this permit, but we were beyond fortunate and had the “Golden Ticket”. With fortune in our favor we set out on a 4 day and 3 night backpacking adventure that I’ll share over the next few posts. Day One: We hiked from the Colchuck Lake trailhead to Colchuck Lake where we set up our first camp and enjoyed our first night away from civilization. #hike30complete. After we set up camp we went for a little jog and scoped out Aasgard’s Pass. Our route would be free of snow to the top of Aasgard’s. We were stoked for the adventure ahead. We checked out some beautiful stars and got to bed as soon as we could. The next morning would be the big push with all our gear. #stoked #theenchantments #goldenticket #corezoneenchantments #corezone #hike30of52 #hike30 #52hikechallenge #gooutside #optoutside #liveyourlife #gearforthelonghaul #gearphoto #mountaineering #backpacking #lovemylife #9monthsposthipsurgery #allthehikes #bestweekofmylife #unbelievableviews #alpinewilderness #alpinebeauty #thisisthelife #pnwwonderland #pnw #ilovepnw

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Hike #27

Dalles Falls – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Course Cleanup

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #26

Noble Knob, Upper Mutton Mountain, and Little Ranger Lookout  – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Course Cleanup

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #25

Lower Mutton Mountain – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Course Marking

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #24

Noble Knob/Little Ranger Lookout – SISU 24 Ultra Course Marking

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #23

Upper Mutton Mountain – SISU 24 Ultra Course Marking

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #22

Little Ranger Peak – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Scouting

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #21

Dalles Falls – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Scouting

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Last week can easily go down as one of the best weeks of my life. Nearly 2 years in the making we finally launched the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24UltraPNW in the state of #Washington and I couldn’t be more happy with how it all turned out! I’m beyond stoked for next year!!! There were six routes that had to be marked for racers to safely navigate. Thankfully a lot of the trails overlapped and could be marked simultaneously. Nevertheless all this course marking forced me to get a lot of hikes in this past week. On Sunday 6/8/19 @the.double.nn and I did a quick scout for Dalles Falls. #hike21of52 #hike21 That same day we also scouted Little Ranger Peak. #hike22of52 #hike22 On Wednesday I knocked out the first trail for course marking which covered what we dubbed the upper #MuttonMountain trail. It totaled 9.83 miles and 3300’ of gain. #hike23of52 #hike23 Next up on Thursday was going to be my longest grind to prepare for the racers. All the way to #NobleKnob from Camp Sheppard. Thankfully I would knocked out #LittleRangerLookout simultaneously. Distance: 20.8 miles round trip with 4,055 feet of elevation gain. #hike24of52 #hike24 Friday morning all I had left to mark was lower Mutton Mountain, a quick 3.73 miles. #hike25of52 #hike25 Sunday, after all the trails were run and challenges completed, it was time to clean everything up. To do this quicker I devised a route that would hit Mutton, Noble and the Lookout all in one go. 14.8 miles and 3,500 feet of gain. #hike26of52 #hike26 On Monday I had one last hike to complete. I had to retrieve the remaining eggs from Dalles Falls. There were 29 eggs when I got to the falls. I decided to beta a challenge for next year so I ran barefoot to retrieve the eggs. It was exhilarating to ground myself and connect with #MotherEarth on such an intimate level. #hike27of52 #hike27 #alltheeggsmadeitbackintact #explorewashington #optoutside #pnwonderland #pnwhiking #lifeofadventure #sisu24pnw #sisuendurance #sisu @team_sisu.endurance #ultraadventures

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Hike #17

Noble Knob – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Scouting

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Yesterday, I got out and did #Hike17of52 and let me tell ya, this was by far one of the hardest to date! Starting at Camp Sheppard where the @team_sisu.endurance #SISU24PNW event will take place a month from now I set out to test one of the 6 routes for the Adventure Run Course, my destination was Noble Knob. If you look this trail up on @washingtontrails it’s a much different much easier route than this one I’ve put together which takes you on parts of the White River Trail, Little Ranger Peak Trail and the Palisades Trail, all in all it totaled to be a 18.9 mile route for me. The final route will be possibly a little shorter once the snow melts and it’s easier to route find. 😆 The day started off quite beautiful and sunny. On this route you quickly find yourself under a canopy of the most vibrant greens and it’s just gorgeous but 4.5 miles in and it becomes this dystopian forest when you reach the burned section. All around there were trees burned and tons of debris on the trail at times I had to really focus to stay on course, thankfully my preplanned route was mapped into my @suunto watch and that kept me on course. As I neared the last mile to Noble Knob the weather took a turn for the worse and the winds picked up and began blowing me around while I did some ridge walking. I was taken by surprise when the wind continued to pick up and suddenly found myself traveling across a snow covered zone. Going outside on these adventures often feels like I’m a character in one of the many video games I played as a kid and I absolutely love the parallels I see when I’m out there. Next time I’ll be smart and bring gloves, a few times I had to duck behind a large boulder to block the wind so I could warm my hands once again. I did not expect it to get so cold up there. I had a blast pushing myself to endure this battle with nature. My heart is filled and I’m beyond happy. I can’t wait for everyone to experience this route next month. Epic, barely does justice. #ultrarunner #52hikeschallenge #cascadecrest100training #sisu24pnw #sisu #sisuendurance #makemyownhappiness #17of52 #nobleknob #onlythenoblest #gooutside #optoutside #nottired

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Hike #16

Capital Peak 50M – DNF

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The first picture, the look of a man ready to test his new hip, the last picture the smile of a successful failure. When I registered for this race with less than a month to train I knew I wasn’t signing up for something I was guaranteed to finish, I knew I was giving myself a huge margin for failure, but I was okay with that. After 6 months of recovery I wanted to see what my body could do…as of now, and it was every bit of incredible that I could ask for. My lovely girlfriend, @the.double.nn joined me for the weekend’s adventure and gave her first go at crewing for me, I’m pretty stoked to have this amazing cheerleader in my corner. She went above and beyond trying to help me figure out what the hell I could stomach to keep myself fueled when I wanted nothing but candy and she came backwards on the course to find me and rallied me to get my ass in gear before I missed the cutoff. I actually did make it to the cut off in time but the likelihood of making the next cutoff at my pace was slim, I was hurting and I had no reason to push myself and harder or further. I found out everything I needed to in the 29 miles that I ran last Saturday. This is where I am at 6 months post hip surgery, it’s been such an incredible journey and the fun part has only just begun! Can’t wait to see what I am capable of in the next 6 months. To anyone suffering from injury, I assure you, it can get better! You just need to take action, talk to doctors, talk to therapists, do what it takes to make yourself whole again. It’s worth every tear, every penny, and every minute of your time. I promise. Getting yourself back to good is the best thing you can do for yourself. Don’t make my mistake of suffering for no good reason. I spent 4 years in pain, self medicated, for what?! I’m so glad that’s in my past now. I’ve learned a lot in these past almost 5 years since that accident in the UTV that rolled down the mountain in New Jersey. I’m a better man because of the transformation it forced me to go through. Side note: this marked hike 16/52 😆 #beyourbestyou #hike16of52 #52hikechallenge2019 #capitolpeak50 #capitolpeak #makemyownhappiness #ultraneering #ultrarunner #morethanjustme

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Hike #14

Red Mountain

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This was probably one of my favorite hikes to date. #Hike14of52, I decided to go on this climb after waking up feeling rather melancholy. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I was ready for an adventure. In hindsight, I definitely would’ve benefited from bringing my gators, it was a lesson learned. After doing some route finding early on, I finally got myself on track. There was a lot of post holing, which has left my legs feeling pretty beat up today, there was a waterfall stream crossing that, it was rather sketchy, but all-in-all the most intense part of this hike was the final stretch up to the summit. There was so much vert it was insane and as i neared the top I found myself looking back and realizing just how high I was. I don’t usually feel fear but in that moment I definitely felt it, it was so incredibly steep and when I looked back I was questioning just how I was going to get down. I forced onward all while talking to @the.double.nn on the phone. It was crazy to me that I had full service. I figured I can deal with finding my way down when it mattered, until then my mind was set on reaching the summit. When I finally made it to the summit I was blown away by the views. I took the time to share the experience over FaceTime and snapped a bunch of photos before I stopped to take it all in. It was an extraordinary moment. Absolutely, breathtaking. To my surprise, the descent wasn’t as bad as I had feared it would be. In all actuality it quite enjoyable, I was down to the normal grade of descent within a few minutes and soon after I was running on the hard packed snow back to my car and I was feeling better than ever. Nothing beats some good old mountain therapy, I’m telling you! Go, get yourself a nature bath, it’ll do wonders for your mind, body, and soul. Go outside. Opt Outside. #optoutside #goplay #mountaintherapy #cascadecrest100training #sisu24pnw #SISU #NatureBath #allthesummits #52hikes #redmountain #suuntospartanultra #suunto #arcteryx #Lululemon #ultrarunning #ultraneer #mountaineer #Gethigh #Gothedistance #allthevert #getvertical #mtjme #mtjm #morethanjustmountains #liveyourlife #liveloud #livelarge #loveyourself #14of52

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Hike #13

Noble Knob/Little Ranger Lookout – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Scouting

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This weekend was awesome. @the.double.nn and I took off for Enumclaw and scouted for the @team_sisu.endurance SISU24PNW event that is bringing me back into the world of race directing. I’m very excited to have this opportunity and can’t wait to share this experience with some incredible humans. This weekend marked hikes #12 and #13. On Friday we walked all around Camp Sheppard and on Saturday after a very cold evening camping ⛺️ went after Noble Knob. I called a turnaround when things got slick and sketchy. I can’t wait to go back in a few weeks for more. All in all it was a great course scout. This is going to be fun. I am jealous that i won’t be able to participate 😆😆 #52hikeschallenge #12of52 #hike12of52 #13of52 #hike13of52 …… Posted @withrepost • @team_sisu.endurance The snow is slowly clearing from the trails at the race venue for the SISU 24 PNW and we are so stoked! We covered some serious ground this past weekend but got turned around at one point. We should be all clear in a couple weeks though when we return for more scouting. We will be hosting an AMA with Race Director @ajmatesi in the coming days, check out the event page on Facebook for more info, search SISU 24 PNW. We’ll be revealing more info about the course and possibly giving a sneak peak at the map. If you’re not signed up yet, why not? What’s stopping you? For those toeing the line, we look forward to seeing how far you go and who’s going to complete all 6 loops in the 24 Hour time limit. #TeamSISU #sisuendurance #headsweats #keepacoolhead #headsweatsambassador #SISUPNW24 #Endurance #Training #TrailToes #Gratitude #Hiking #Rucking #InjinjiSocks #Fitness #Challengeyourself #Motivation #Outdoors #Mountains #Trails #TrailRunning #EnduranceRacing #Perseverance #Gratitude #Selflessness

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Hike #12

Snoquera Falls – SISU 24 Ultra PNW Scouting

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This weekend was awesome. @the.double.nn and I took off for Enumclaw and scouted for the @team_sisu.endurance SISU24PNW event that is bringing me back into the world of race directing. I’m very excited to have this opportunity and can’t wait to share this experience with some incredible humans. This weekend marked hikes #12 and #13. On Friday we walked all around Camp Sheppard and on Saturday after a very cold evening camping ⛺️ went after Noble Knob. I called a turnaround when things got slick and sketchy. I can’t wait to go back in a few weeks for more. All in all it was a great course scout. This is going to be fun. I am jealous that i won’t be able to participate 😆😆 #52hikeschallenge #12of52 #hike12of52 #13of52 #hike13of52 …… Posted @withrepost • @team_sisu.endurance The snow is slowly clearing from the trails at the race venue for the SISU 24 PNW and we are so stoked! We covered some serious ground this past weekend but got turned around at one point. We should be all clear in a couple weeks though when we return for more scouting. We will be hosting an AMA with Race Director @ajmatesi in the coming days, check out the event page on Facebook for more info, search SISU 24 PNW. We’ll be revealing more info about the course and possibly giving a sneak peak at the map. If you’re not signed up yet, why not? What’s stopping you? For those toeing the line, we look forward to seeing how far you go and who’s going to complete all 6 loops in the 24 Hour time limit. #TeamSISU #sisuendurance #headsweats #keepacoolhead #headsweatsambassador #SISUPNW24 #Endurance #Training #TrailToes #Gratitude #Hiking #Rucking #InjinjiSocks #Fitness #Challengeyourself #Motivation #Outdoors #Mountains #Trails #TrailRunning #EnduranceRacing #Perseverance #Gratitude #Selflessness

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Hike #9

Mt St. Helens Winter Route

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Many of you don’t know this, some of you might, but I personally suffer from depression. It comes in waves and sometimes completely unexpectedly. My most recent battle with it began around the time my hip surgery began, uncertain of what the outcome would be. Would I be able to run, climb, skip, jump, bicycle, yoga, or dance my ass off? I went into the surgery optimistic that I would recover, even with all the optimism I tend to have, I couldn’t fight back the bouts of depression that trapped me for months in this wave of uncertainty, depleted confidence, and even the occasional suicidal thought. I hated how powerful it was. Even though I was self aware and able to recognize the irrational reality my mind was creating, I still couldn’t get out of the funk. It’s taken many long hikes, nights of crying, and the help of close friends who have shown me more love than I at times thought I could ever deserve, to claw my way out of the jaws of defeat and back onto the summits of mountains. The good news is, I’m feeling better, the fog is clearing and up I’m slowly getting my spunk back. Playing in the mountains has been one of the strongest “medicines.” I’ve found that with each climb, I’ve regained a part of me that started to get lost. For those of you who face similar battles, know this, it’ll get better, you can pull yourself back together and you can be happy. My solo summit of Mt St. Helens checked off another one of my 7 Summits of the Pacific Northwest challenge I gave myself and another one of my 52 hikes for the year. It also served as a reminder that when you dig deep enough, you CAN be powerful beyond measure. You just need the courage to start to be the change you want to be. 4/7 Summits of PNW 🏔 Completed #liveyourlife #bethechange #allthesummits #7summitsofpnw #naturebath #overcomingdepression #makemyownhappiness #solosummit #mtsthelens #52hikes #9outof52 #9of52 #hike9of52 #mountaineer #ultraneering #ultraneer #summits

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Hike #8

Mailbox Peak

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The past week I decided to take a cleanse from social media. Decided I needed some focus and clarity to get some of the numerous projects I’ve started a little but closer to completion. Taking time off the mindless scrolling really gave me the opportunity to redirect my focus as well as the actual chance to focus. I was fortunate to be able to take advantage of some of the best spring weather this region has ever seen. Last Friday I took the time to climb my favorite mountain, #MailboxPeak, which is known to have the steepest climb if you stick to the old trail. There’s some magical about this hike it really brings me a ton of happiness every time I throw down with this self prescribed Sufferfest. With all the time off social media I completed some hikes, read some more books, worked on my book, as well some other projects I’ve yet to share with you all. I also had a chance to work on the #SISU24PNW which is going to be one hell of a good time. It’ll be taking place June 15-16 in Enumclaw, WA. For 24 hours you get to choose your own adventure. I welcome you to come test yourself, have fun, camp out and most of all enjoy some adult playtime. Send me a DM and I’ll give you a $50 OFF discount cokde just for you. Seriously. $50 OFF. Just message me. #allthesummits #52hikes #8outof52 #8of52 #hikethepnw #pnwonderland #pnwlife #sisu24 @team_sisu.endurance #sisuendurance #perseverance #grit #overcomingdepression #naturebath #myfavoritemedicine #nature #mountainrunner #ultraneering #ultraneeringlife

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Hike #1

Bridal Veil Falls

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Getting back into the swing of things has been a slow process but I’ve been doing what I can to take everything one day at a time. Some days are better than others. I’ve been quiet about my 2019 goals and ambitions as I’m still getting myself back to 💯 but I’m slowly getting back to being myself and doing what I love. The truth is Surgery is something I put off for years because I knew it was going to take me to some dark places. Thankfully, I’ve made some incredible friends these past 8 months or so here in my new home of Seattle and I am beyond grateful for their presence in my life. Without them, I may not be where I am now. Shout out to everyone who has come into my life and been there for me through this process. I cannot begin to express my gratitude. I love each and every one of you beyond the words I could express in an Instagram. With that said, here’s to my first hike of 2019 a few weeks back. I’m on a mission to complete as many hikes in this gorgeous state as possible this year, on top of that I will finish the remaining 4/7 summits of the PNW that I have left Summits of the PNW ✔️ Rainier ✔️ Shuksan ✔️ Adams Baker Helens Hood Glacier Peak #PNWHikes #1of52 #pnwonderland #pnwlife #pnwhiking #pnwlove #mountainman #mountainsforgood #mtjm #morethanjustme #ilovethislife #imstillalive #ican #iwill #makethemostofit #bridalveilfalls #lakeserene #mushroomhunting

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