Peak Bagging is an attempt to reach summits or the tops of mountains. We talked to Kiara, who has peak bagged many challenging trails such as Mt Whitney, the highest peak in the contiguous US. In addition to hitting the highest peaks, she also plays Club Soccer and is a Black Belt. We talked to her about how she did it.
How She Got Started
Kiara was only 2 months old when her mom carried her on hikes around Mount Rainier in Washington while her dad summited it.
Kiara reached her first peak at age seven when she hiked San Gorgonio in California with her dad and two dogs, Isis and Sumo. It took them two days to get to the top. Her dad
motivated her to keep going by telling her about the view at the top.
It only took her one day to come down from San
Gorgonio…because she was motivated by her dog Isis. Isis was lost on the descent. Kiara loves her dog and was determined to find her, even if it meant going faster and harder. They reached the bottom of the trail, and there was Isis waiting for them at their car!
Since this, she has hiked in Nepal two times and has seen Mt. Everest while climbing Pikey Peak. She has also hiked Mt. Wilson, Mt. Baldy and Mt. Whitney, three of the tallest peaks in California. Her biggest challenge is staying motivated, but with a positive attitude she has accomplished everything she’s attempted!
You Can Be a Peak Bagger, Too!
1. Start out learning about hiking. Here are some good places to start:
- REI offers great classes in hiking and backpacking. Some are even free!
- Join a group such as Campfire, Girl Scouts, or for teens, Venturers. Let them know you’d like to find a group that does a lot of hiking!
- Motivate yourself with books such as No Summit Out of Sight, about a teen who hiked the highest peak on all seven continents.
2. Start training with easy hikes such as 5 milers. Add on miles as you go and continue adding on miles as you conquer. Check out AllTrails for ideas. Never hike alone!
3. Collect the right equipment. A good backpack and hiking boots are important. Try on your hiking boots and wear them around before you try to hike in them. You also need to bring a lot of water, at least one liter for every five miles and even more if it’s hot.
The ten essentials to keep in your backpack are:
- Sunglasses and sunscreen
- Extra clothing, including rain parka
- First-aid supplies
- Extra food
With motivation and work you can do any hike you dream. So grab your supplies and info books and start MOTIVATING!
About the Author
Camille enjoys hiking and camping. She has summited Mt. Wilson (with her friend Kiara) and Mt Washburn, as well as many other 5-10 mile hikes. She is hoping to summit Mt. Baldy next year!