Patrick Lydem's 2018 Trailblaze Challenge
I have decided to play a vital role in transforming lives of children with life threatening medical conditions by taking part in the Trailblaze Challenge for Make-A-Wish Connecticut. This is my second time hiking (and third time being involved) and I will hike 26.2 miles in one day to raise both money and awareness for children in our Connecticut communities. This will be a big undertaking, but it will be worth it because your donations will not only motivate me to the finish, but they will help us bring hope, strength, and joy to the families Make-A-Wish East Connecticut serves. Make-A-Wish CT has granted more than 3000 wishes since the chapter was founded in 1986 and all funds raised during the Trailblaze Challenge will go to grant the wishes of children with life threatening medical conditions in Connecticut. The average wish costs $10,000 so won't you please consider a donation today?
My Personal Web Log
We did it!
On September 8th at 5:30a.m., I and 19 others started out on the final part of our journey - a 26.2 mile hike through the woods and hills and around the lakes and ponds of Bear Mountain and Harriman State Parks. It was a near perfect day for a long hike, with clouds and relatively low temperatures compared to what we've been training in throughout the summer. Every five to seven miles the awesome people of Make-A-Wish CT - employees, volunteers and wish families - greeted us with cowbells, some bagpipes and yells of encouragement and support along with food and drink to give us energy to complete the journey. The last mile we were treated to signs that described the stories of some of the wishes granted and how we were making a difference. After 11 hours and 11 minutes (and a couple extra miles due to missing a turn) I finished my hike and waited to see everyone else come over the line. Thank you all for your generosity so far. I am nearly to my goal and hope I can make that last push before the deadline of October 31st.
by Patrick Lydem on Thu, Sep 13, 2018 @ 1:07 PM
Just a few days to go!
Well, it's Labor Day and that means only five days until hike day. I am so thankful to everyone who donated so far - I am very close to my goal and have made a surge the last week or so with some generous donations from friends, family and my company. So, today I spent some time focusing on what I need to bring on my hike considering this year I am trying a smaller pack (a lumbar pack instead of a full pack). I re-packed my first aid kit and replenished a few things and I got my hiking poles down from the attic. I think I'm ready - just need to pick up a few more snacks and charge my portable batteries. So, thanks again to everyone and wish me luck and a strong body.
by Patrick Lydem on Mon, Sep 03, 2018 @ 9:55 AM
Last official training hike completed!
Well, several Trailblazer's set out at 7:15 this past Saturday morning with the goal of hiking 20 miles for our last official training hike. My personal goal, due to a time constraint (evening plans) was 15 miles. We hiked from route 66 (near Guida's New Restaurant in Middlefield) on the Mattabessett Trail, one of the longest in the CT Blue Trail system. It was a cool morning but quickly warmed up as we ranged up and down several ridges, including up and over Powder Ridge Ski Area. I ended up going roughly nine miles with the group and turning around to hike back to my car on my own (actually, my dog Leo was with me). Unfortunately Leo and I ran out of water with about five miles to go and poor Leo hurt one of his paw pads. Thankfully I bring along a first aid kit and was able to wrap his paw. We struggled the last couple miles but made it back to the car, where a cooler full of ice cold water awaited us. I am now letting my legs recover for a couple days before resuming my training in preparation for hike day, which is less than two weeks away!
by Patrick Lydem on Mon, Aug 27, 2018 @ 10:05 AM
Progress so far
We're getting very close to hike weekend and our last official training hike is on August 25th (20 miles on the Mattabessett Trail)! So far we've tackled carrying an 80 pound box up 2 miles and 2000 feet of elevation and had hikers training in pouring rain and thunderstorms and one of the hottest and most humid summers I've seen in a while. We've got some very dedicated people who really want to help Make-A-Wish Connecticut grant wishes to children with life threatening illnesses. So, I just want to say thank you to those who have donated so far and hope those donations continue to come in to achieve the overall goal.
by Patrick Lydem on Wed, Aug 22, 2018 @ 3:00 PM
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