The temps are cooling, the days are getting shorter, and it's only a matter of time before the first snows start falling on Mount Hood...but before I get ahead of myself planning snow-ventures to come, we here at Outdoor Project are gearing up for a month-long hike challenge to raise $10,000 for the Sierra Club! With the help of Team Sierra, we're taking to the trails this October and hiking at least 30 miles each, all the while rallying our friends, family, and community to raise funds for a good cause.
Now I'm not typically a hiker. Don't get me wrong, I spend as much time as possible outside - preferably in the middle of nowhere, remote wildernesses, or anywhere that takes me off the beaten track and away from the crowds - but those adventures are almost always from the seat of my bike or strapped up to my ski setup. It's not that I don't enjoy hiking, it's that I enjoy letting gravity help me on the way down when given the chance. Unfortunately, when partaking in gravity-fueled activities, falls are part of the game - and such was the story with an August two-wheeled crash that's left me without a functioning right shoulder and off the bike for the foreseeable future...
And so I see no better way to recover than to rediscover my love for exploring solely by foot. Plus, I get to bring my dog as I contribute to a worthy effort and reacquaint myself with the trails that I love so much! Win, win, win.
When I first moved to Oregon, hiking was how I fell in love with this incredible region; from jaunts up Dog Mountain and "trail-running" (aka hiking a bit faster and sweating profusely with a small backpack on) Angel's Rest in the Columbia River Gorge to epic hikes up the sides of Pacific Northwest volcanoes or along the stunning, rocky coastline, hiking was my introduction to my new home. It's been a little over four years now since I began exploring the PNW, and I am completely convinced that hiking through the mountains, valleys, desserts, and rainforests of the Oregon and Washington those first couple of years is the main reason I'm still here...and now I'm not going anywhere!
As we ramp up to the beginning of autumn, I am getting more and more excited to strap on my hiking boots and hike over 30 miles in October; what's more, I'll even be back in New England to see family, and you can bet those boots will be coming with me! It felt only natural to take advantage of my favorite website (cough cough, wink wink) and make an October Hike Challenge bucket list full of both personal favorites and long-time to-dos:
*Hikes dependent on fire activity.
In October, Outdoor Project and Team Sierra are teaming up to hike for a cause! All you have to do is hike at least 30 miles in October and get your community to support you. It's that simple.
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