On November 1st, 2003 our friend Sue Johnston completed an incredible hiking accomplishment. Sue has hiked all 48 4000-foot New Hampshire mountains. This in itself is quite an accomplishment and is a goal for many hikers.
But Sue had a personal goal. and that was to summit each of these 48 peaks in every month of the year. That means she has summited 576 peaks of 4000 feet or more. For those of you not familiar with the NH White Mountains, the terrain and weather patterns are typical of mountains at much higher altitudes. Completing this goal meant that Sue has endured temperatures of well below zero, with wind chills in the double digits below zero. Winds in excess of 50 mph are not atypical - even in summer months. The terrain is harsh - these are not walking paths! Snowfall can be 18-20 feet deep in the winter, with the accompanying difficulties and dangers surrounding winter hiking at high altitude. Sometimes she was turned back due to weather. Some of these summits were reached after dark. Many of them were done alone. As far as we know, Sue is only the third person to have completed this goal, and is the first woman to have done so.
Sue would never "make a big deal" out of this, but we wanted to share this incredible accomplishment with you, her friends, and hope that you send her your own well wishes on a task completed.
We have listed below the link to our photos from the last hike. A group of friends gathered to bag the last three remaining peaks in Sue's quest. Mts. Adam, Jefferson, and Madison were summited with friends - we were honored to be among them. The day was cloudy, cool, and, at times, incredibly windy. It was a fine day to be in the mountains, and even cooler to share it with good folks. (and one pretty cool doggy too!). As you look at these photos, just a small sampling of the trails that Sue has hiked, imagine doing them in the dead of winter, on ice and deep snow, with the wind whipping an icy blast in your face, and a wind chill of -28 or so, and you just might get a small idea of how truly amazing this accomplishment is. Then shoot an email Sue's way and give her a virtual high five.
There are two albums, one for the hike, and one for the last summit and celebration.
(the final summit and party!)
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