2015 was such a year of big accomplishments by my two little backpackers. In the late winter and spring, we went backpacking a few times, but filled most of our time with two large road trips with family. However, when the school year let out, we decided to make a backpacking goal for the summer. We needed a challenge that we would really have to work hard for and decided on backpacking 100 miles between Memorial Weekend and Labor Day weekend.
J-Hawk and Rosabell spent a few days making list of possible trips. They each poured over all my guide books picking out places that seemed fun. Rosabell specifically picked almost every hike in the North Cascades based on the beautiful photos in the book. We studied Green Trails Maps and experimented with backcountry food recipes. After deciding on our top 20 preferred hikes, we began to pack our backpacks in preparation for the first trip.
Through a network of friends, Washington Trails Association (WTA) contacted me and eventually published an article on their blog about our family goal for the summer. To read the article click here. We trekked on through the summer going backpacking once a week for the first half of the summer. In July, WTA caught up with us again for a follow up interview for their blog. To read this article, click here. It was pretty cool when it was time for the follow up. It was a moment for the kids to look back and take pride in their accomplishments.
At the conclusion of the summer, the kids were interviewed on live TV with King 5 News. It was pretty special for the kids to go down to the news station and see news anchors that they see every morning on TV. Rosabell was so captivated by her surroundings that she had trouble focusing long enough to answer questions. It was their three minutes of fame! Eventually, I’ll talk the news station into sending me a copy of the interview and I will post a link here.
At the time of the King 5 news interview, J-Hawk had already completed his 100 miles of backpacking, but Rosabell still had another 13 miles to go. It took her another trip to meet her goal. At the completion of her 100 miles, the kids happily unpacked their packs for the final time that summer.
We spent the next few weekends underground. Caving is another passion we have and it was a great way to keep the adventure going but let the tents and sleeping bags rest for a couple months. As the rainy season started in the Pacific Northwest, we hid indoors dreaming up some new goals for 2016.