"The 52 Hike Challenge really pushed me to try more challenging trails, and to motivate my friends and family to get out more regularly. My favorite trail this year was also the most physically and mentally challenging.
I took my siblings hiking up in the Whites Mountains and they ended up bailing pretty early on in the trail. I remember a few times where I had to stop and try not to break down on the side of the mountain. Despite it all, once getting above tree-line and summitting the Presies, I had never been so at peace. Seeing for miles above these gorgeous peaks and being surrounded by such a supportive and kind community of backpackers, I can't wait to return and hike it again!"
What helped you stay motivated to finish the 52 Hike Challenge?
"I personally kept a log where I drew up the trail maps, logged specs like elevation and miles, and wrote down any highlights of the trip. I then filled in the pages between hikes with nature related quotes, poetry, and fun little themed stickers! I also picked up a log book of PA state parks that could be stamped with a lot of my hikes."
Follow Caitlin Gill on Instagram @salamanderhikes