Käryn Gaffney

Meet Karyn! Amazing mama, avid hiker, and an inspiration to all of us to get outside.

Here is her story:
I started with Hike It Baby in February of 2015 when my daughter was 6 months old. I was new to being a stay-at-home mom and it sounded like a good way to get outdoors and involved in our community. When I first started with the group, I didn't have a lot of strength or stamina and it was hard for me to do any length of walk after having my C-section. Despite this, I connected with the group quickly and met some amazing people. I started small with walks, and then short hikes.

Over the next few months I started feeling stronger and I was able to carry my daughter on longer and more difficult hikes. After a few short months, I was completely hooked! We started doing more remote trails and seeing more and more amazing things. My daughter loved it too! She is totally into dirt, the sound of a waterfall, poking at insects and looking at all the colorful leaves.

So this year, after easing into becoming a hiker, I set my sights on a lofty goal for myself. I decided that I would summit an actual mountain. Mount St. Helens was calling my name and I got my permit for September. I ended up getting pregnant shortly after planning the trip, so over the summer months I had to train hard and stay focused on my goal. I wasn't sure if I could do it; this second pregnancy had sapped a lot of my strength and energy and I found it harder and harder to hike.

The morning of September 27th I set out with my determination and a group of great friends to support me. Later that afternoon I cried when I reached the top because I did something that I never thought that I would do. I felt empowered and capable. These are things that I want for my daughter to know, so this is why I take her out and continue to hike those mountains with her.

Keep your eyes on your goals and do whatever it takes to reach them. Your babies are watching you so show them that this world is theirs and things that may seem impossible at first are within grasp.

#TemaAthletics #hikeitbaby #hiking #fitness #pnw

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