Reflections on the 2017 52 Hike Challenge

When I began the 2017 52 Hike Challenge last January, I knew it was going to be quite the task because although one hike a week sounds manageable, it’s not always possible to hike every single week.  However, I didn’t altogether realize at the time how challenging it would really be.  Not being allowed to repeat trails meant I had to actively search for new places to visit/explore.  Not being allowed to count trails under one mile in total length meant I couldn’t take the easy way out and do 52 easy trails below my ability-level.  Posting on this blog meant there was no option to quietly quit and slink back into the easy of spending Sundays watching football and not moving from the couch all day.  At the end of the year, I hiked over 124 miles, of which I’m insanely proud 🙂

If you want to see a full list of the hikes I completed, click here, but below I’m going to focus on a few highlights:

Longest Hike: *tie – each at 8 miles* Appalachian Trail from Newfound Gap to Charlie’s Bunion & Bryant Grove

Most Difficult Hike: Alum Cave to Mt. LeConte

Best Group Hike: Full Moon Hike

Best Trail for Trail Running: Gatlinburg Trail

Favorite “New-to-Me” Trail: Alum Cave

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