“When I got my first glimpse of the Rocky Mountains, the way I felt then — I can’t explain it, but I knew immediately what I had found. I knew that I wanted a life around those mountains, and so I packed up my Honda Prelude the very next summer and drove cross-country, no job, no plans, just a desire to exist in the place that had touched something in me that there are no words for.”
Katie crafted her custom Summit for Someone challenge in honor of her cousin, Ryan, who passed away at the age of 25 while seeking adventure in the great outdoors that he cherished. Ryan was looking forward to a move out west from his native North Carolina in pursuit of big mountains and their magical pull, which Katie also experienced.
Driven by the desire to help create positive change in the wake of a terrible accident, Katie channeled her passion and energy into a fundraising campaign that would directly support opportunities for under-resourced youth to experience the power of the wilderness for the first time.
In the early stages of planning her adventure fundraiser, Katie chose a fundraising goal that would make a week-long backcountry expedition possible for 2 teenagers – $2000. Through organizing a number of fun events for her community of donors, as well as consistent work to keep her family and friends in the loop about her progress, Katie eventually surpassed her goal and went on to raise a whopping $3023 for BCM’s youth programs!
The culmination of her challenge was tackling Mt. Evans, a towering 14,130-foot peak just west of Denver, Colorado. In Katie’s words:
“Maybe those two or three kids who get to go on a wilderness expedition on Ryan’s dime will find something wonderful outside too, something that nurses their own little glow. Nature is the most effective therapy I know. It can quiet grief, mute sadness, soften anger. In nature, we reflect on ourselves and we find ourselves. We become better people. It is the best legacy I know.”