See what's coming up next and in the future for Joe Wilderness and friends. Our whole 2020 climbing season is now mapped out. Check it out!
Saranac 6 Ultra Winter Attempt
February 22nd, 2020
The Saranac Lake 6 has only been an official challenge since 2013. To do it “Ultra” style, you must complete all 6 mountains within 24 hours. To do it Ultra Winter style….well, you get the point. Johnny Mountaintop and I are going to push ourselves to our physical limits by attempting to become Ultra Winter 6ers. There are less than 100 registered people who have done this.
Big Slide Mountain
It’s time to start getting Mr. Mountaintop caught up with me in our 46er challenge. So, the beginning of our season will feature a few mountains I’ve already climbed. Shucks, how broken-hearted I am. Up first, Big Slide Mountain. This is the hike I dedicated to my friend Bryan Black last year and I am eager to return.
Algonquin & Iroquois
Another re-do for me. But this one truly kicked my ass the first time around, since it was so early in my hiking journey. Maybe we’ll re-visit Wright together, since it’s generally grouped with these two, but that’ll be a game day decision. I’m most excited to see how much better I am on these big mountains now that I’m a much better hiker.
Phelps & Tabletop
The muddiest mountains I’ve seen in the Adirondacks and the last two that JM needs to be all caught up with my 23 High Peaks. The month May might not exactly be the greatest choice for this hike, but hey, we’ll figure it out. Tabletop is one I thought I would never do again – and likely won’t after the ole partner and I hit the peak together. But Phelps was a treat and I took shitty pictures, so I’m hoping to get better ones this time around.
Upper Wolfjaw Mountain (ADK #24)
And now, the real mission begins. With Johnny M and I tied at 23 High Peaks, we move forward together, forever, from here on out. First up, a mountain we almost nabbed this past October. Conditions of the day made us rethink and abandon that day. There were so many beautiful spots and waterfalls on this trail, going back doesn’t hurt my feelings at all.
Allen Mountain (ADK #25)
What many hikers consider to be the most challenging hike of the 46er challenge. This is one of those mountains that only people aspiring to be 46ers actually go out of their way to do. It’s also the most isolated of all the 46, just lonely, out there on it’s own with no mountain friends. We’ll be your friends Allen, just be good to us.
The Kovinich Group Presents:
Cerro Chirripó Adventure
Our team’s first major, international, sponsored hike. We couldn’t be more excited if there was a leprechaun and a pot of gold waiting for us at the end of this one. The hike will take us two days and will bring us to the highest peak in Costa Rica, as well as the highest peak we’ve ever reached. Standing at 12,536 feet, you could say this will be the highest I’ve ever been…..
Rocky Peak Ridge (ADK #26)
No rest for the wicked. Or weary. Or our team. Coming back from Costa Rica and getting right back in to ADK mode. We almost had this one twice in 2019. Weather turned us back once and we canceled the second attempt altogether due to local things going on in the area that closed the roads. This one hikes right through fresh blueberry fields and is said to be one of the gems of the 46 hikes.
Marshall Mountain (ADK #27)
The final hike of our season that consists of just a single mountain. After this, we’ll be hitting multiple peaks with each hike. This one is also one those mountains that most folks only climb if they’re attempting the 46. Which likely means a wooded summit with no views. All good, that’s why JM and I keep a list of mountains we won’t climb again. Esther, we’re looking at you.
Santanoni, Couchsachraga & Panther (ADKs # 28, 29, 30)
Three in a day. Or maybe over two days, we’ll see. I’ve heard all three can be intense. Couchsachraga (say it out loud – Cook-Sa-Cra-Ga) is the smallest of the 46 and one of the few that was measured incorrectly back in the day and doesn’t actually reach the 4000 foot requirement to be a High Peak. Still gotta do it tho, because it still counts. This one too is another muddy mess – time to get dirty!
The Dix Range (ADKs #31-35)
A favorite among ADK hikers, this range gives you 5 peaks in a single 24km hike. It is another optional overnighter. This is a hike I’ve been waiting for. The views are said to be bonkers. I can already say with confidence that once our round of 46 is done, we’ll be back to do this one multiple times over.
Redfield & Cliff (ADKs #36 & 37)
Originally scheduled for this past summer, we abandoned plans for this hike when we accidentally climbed Mt Marcy. The summit steward on top of Marcy had discussed our major day hike plans with us and reeeeeeally didn’t want us to push as hard as we had planned. His name was Ian and he was totally right. We pushed this hike in to this year’s schedule instead.
Haystack, Basin, Saddleback (ADKs #38, 39 & 40)
I’m not gonna say that this will 100% be the final ADK hike of our season, but it will be the final scheduled hike. If weather cooperates, maybe we snag another. And if not, 40 seems like a great place to finish the year. Hopefully we can put the COMPLETED stamp on this one and everything that comes before it so Johnny Mountaintop and I can enter 2021 right on the cusp of our big finish.
More Lake Placid 9ers
No Schedule, whenever I coax Loni back out
This past summer I took my friend, Loni, to her first peak, Mount Jo. Mount Jo belongs to a challenge called The Lake Placid 9 and I told Loni we would complete them together and then get matching tattoos to commemorate our accomplishment. I think she knows a thing or two about tattoos.
The Wildcard: Mt Elbert, Colorado
September 2020, Likely
With Costa Rica, we’re already scheduled to hit our highest peak ever this summer. I say what better way to celebrate than by going higher? Rocky Mountain higher! Elbert is the highest peak in the entire Rocky Mountain range, at 14,400 feet. I’ll be all out of vacation time, which means this one is a logistical nightmare: work Friday, fly out on a redeye, rest Saturday, hike Elbert on Sunday, fly home Monday to be ready for work on Tuesday. Tell me it can’t be done….
Hustle & Motivate Hike Series
This one is all about inspiring others. You think you wanna join us for a hike? All you gotta do is ask. This is focused on rookies, beginners, but all are welcome. Maybe you used to hike and aren’t sure of your skill level anymore. Or, maybe you’re a loner (it’s OK, we’re all loners too) and you’ve got no one to share your hiking with. And maybe you and some friends wanna try something completely new and don’t know how to get started. Just get in touch and let us know. I’m on Instagram and Facebook. And my email is somewhere on this blog.