Trail-A-Thon: Share Your Story

September 24, 2020
New York-New Jersey Trail Conference


Trail-A-Thon: Share Your Story
Catskill Trail. Photo by Heather Darley.


Share your Trail-A-Thon story with us by tagging #TrailAThon2020 on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. 

On Oct. 19, the Trail Conference turns 100. To mark that milestone, we're holding our first-ever Trail-A-Thon: 100 Miles for 100 Years challenge. We're inviting everyone to take on the challenge of walking, hiking, running, or riding 100 miles to help mark our Centennial. 

Throughout the 100-mile and fundraising challenge, we will be highlighting inspiring stories of individuals and teams participating in the challenge. Please share photos, videos, and your “why” on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter by tagging @nynjtc and using the hashtag #TrailAThon2020.

We are so incredibly grateful for the enthusiasm and kindness of our trail community. It's an honor to share your stories and have everyone along for the Trail-A-Thon journey.

Week 3: Karl, 75-Mile Milestone Winner

"Trail-A-Thon Challenge? Sign me up! I have been into outdoor adventures ever since a great friend took me on a backpacking trip in 2003. We did an overnight on the Appalachian Trail in High Point State Park and I was hooked! I was intrigued by this massive system of trails in our area and realized that they were all maintained by volunteers! I felt the call to give back and started doing trail maintenance on the Will Monroe Loop in Norvin Green State Forest. If you haven’t checked out that trail it’s a MUST!

Since then I have been really addicted to hiking, including some life-changing long-distance adventures. I have hiked the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine twice (even proposing to my now wife at the end of the second trek), the Colorado Trail, the Long Trail, and the Shawangunk Ridge Trail. This year a friend and I are attempting to section hike the entire Highlands Trail. In the last few years, I have been really into mountain biking and I am psyched to see the Trail Conference embracing multi-use trails for hikers AND bikers. I love that I can use my adventures for the Trail-A-Thon 100 Miles for 100 Years Challenge to help raise money for the Trail Conference in honor of their 100th birthday. Please donate now and go find a trail to maintain!"

Thanks so much for sharing your incredible story and joining our Trail-A-Thon journey, Karl! Help Karl meet his fundraising goal by donating today.

Week 2: Lisa, 25-Mile Milestone Winner

“I am an Emergency Physician and my husband is a Police Officer. We both have very stressful jobs and one of the things that we share is our love of nature and the restoration it provides to our body, mind, and soul.
My father initially introduced me to the woods. He was an inner-city kid that joined the Boy Scouts. He eventually became an Eagle Scout. I used to go to his reunions with him and fell in love with being in the woods. When I met my husband, we began dating because I wanted him to teach me to fly fish. Together we’ve taught our 11-year-old daughter to be an avid outdoorswoman as well.

For the past 10 years, we have spent so many wonderful weekends as a family at Ramapo Valley County Reservation hiking and fishing. We have hiked and fished quite a bit through New York State. We own a home in Vermont, and we have spent countless hours hiking, kayaking, fishing, canoeing, and swimming in the lakes and rivers.

2 years ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. The treatments unveiled a horrible autoimmune condition and I ended up needing a cartilage transplant in my left knee that left me unable to do much for 8 months and I’m still struggling with arthritis in my hands.

3 weeks ago, I climbed to the top of Mt. Snow in Vermont with my family. It was incredible to finally be able to be back to where I was physically 3 years ago.

The woods and streams have been my church, my solace, and my unfailing support through so many life challenges; especially through this last one—it was a doozy. I would not have made it through if I could not have gone into the woods—even on my crutches—and just breathed in the air and listened to the sounds of nature.

This Trail-A-Thon is both a celebration of my reclaiming my ability to walk, be outside and my cancer remission as well as my desire to give back to the land that has given me so much.”

Thanks so much for sharing your incredible story and joining our Trail-A-Thon journey, Lisa!

Help Lisa meet her fundraising goal by donating today.

Week 1: Heather, Our Community Outreach Coordinator

"The Trail Conference is turning 100! I honestly don't know where I would be if I had never stepped foot on a trail (both personally + professionally)! Trails have taught me to chase my passions, find my own pace, be more confident, and so much more. And I owe it all to the Trail Conference and their century-old legacy of stewardship + mission of ensuring our trails are sustainable and accessible for all to enjoy for generations to come. 

Join me for the journey by either taking the challenge yourself or donating to our fundraiser! Happy trails!"

Sign up and take the Trail-A-Thon challenge today or support our $40,000 fundraising goal.