What is Seek the Peak?
It is the annual summer fundraiser for the non-profit Mount Washington Observatory, where hikers from across the region and beyond hit the trail in support of the "Obs." Hikers solicit contributions from friends, family and coworkers beforehand, hike the mountain on the day of the event and celebrate at our after party, with great food, music, fun and prizes.
Where is the kick-off party?
The Friday evening kick-off party will be held at the Mount Washington Observatory Weather Discovery Center in downtown North Conway.
Do you have to be an Observatory member to hike?
Nope! Anyone capable of the hike can participate, and all hikers are encouraged to select trails based on their own ability.
Is it a guided hike?
No, STP participants hike on their own on the trails of their choice on whatever day and time they choose. However, many hikers create their own group of friends or family to hike with. Hikers are strongly encouraged to hike within their comfort zone. Their is no requirement to summit Mount Washington.
Is there a shuttle down from the summit?
No shuttle will be provided for Seek the Peak hikers, and you are responsible for getting yourself down the mountain. However, the Mt. Washington Auto Road does offer a hiker shuttle to the general public. Note: Capacity is extremely limited, and seats are offered on a first come, first served basis, so do not "plan" on utilizing this shuttle. For more information, visit www.mtwashingtonautoroad.com.
Can children participate?
Yes, we love inspiring young hiking enthusiasts. To decide if your child is ready for Mount Washington, we recommend reviewing the Hike Safe page and educating yourself about the mountain's notorious weather conditions. Otherwise, they can choose a hike of choice and still join for the other events.
What if it rains?
The event is held rain or shine, so be prepared for all conditions! Check our Higher Summits Forecast the night before and morning of your hike to know what to expect.
Can I bring a guest to the after party?
Absolutely! Tickets for non-hikers are $25 and may be purchased in advance on our After Party Ticket Purchase page.
What do I do with cash and checks?
Enter the donations on your FirstGiving account page and mail or deliver all offline donations (ie., cash or checks) to the Observatory's administrative offices by Friday, July 21, 2017. Please do not send cash through the mail; we recommend depositing cash gifts and writing us a check for the total, with the donor's names written on your pledge form. Our mailing address is:
Mount Washington Observatory
Attn: Seek the Peak
PO Box 2310
North Conway NH 03860
Who should the checks be made out to?
Please make checks payable to Mount Washington Observatory.
Can my partner and I sign up as one person or team?
You can, but we don't recommend it. One registration = one goodie bag, one t-shirt, one set of fundraising incentives, one ticket to the after party and one entry into the prize pool. Each hiker, as an individual, must raise that $200 fundraising minimum in order to receive their own t-shirt, goodie bag, incentives, after party ticket and prize pool entry.
How do I get one of those great hiker goodie bags?
Seek the Peak goodie bags are guaranteed for the first 500 hikers that raise the $200 fundraising minimum. To make sure you're among the first 500 people, register now and start fundraising ASAP! If you collect offline donations (ie., cash or checks), mail them in as you receive them. Offline donations do not count towards your official fundraising total until they are received by us.
Can I just turn in all of my donations on Seek the Peak Saturday?
You can, but we don't recommend it. There might not be any goodie bags left by Saturday, and prize eligibility is determined on Friday, so donations turned in on Saturday will not be counted towards your prize eligibility. The safest bet is to mail in your donations well in advance of the Friday, July 21, 2017 deadline, or just bring them with you to the Friday night registration.
What's the best way to the summit? What's the best trail for a beginner?
There are many trails ascending Mount Washington, each offering a slightly different experience. If you are new to the area, we recommend purchasing a quality guidebook like the Appalachian Mountain Club's White Mountain Guide, and using its maps and trail descriptions to devise a route that fits your group's abilities and ambitions. Total novices may also find it helpful to call the Appalachian Mountain Club directly at their Pinkham Notch Visitor Center (located at major trailheads on the east side of Mount Washington) or their Highland Center (located at major trailheads on the west side of Mount Washington) to ask for their expert advice.
Remember: While there is no "easy" way up Mount Washington, there are many trail options in the area for those who are not ready to summit. If you are unsure of your ability to make it to the top, choose a shorter route or simply go halfway. Seek the Peak isn't a race – it's all about enjoying this place we call home, and making it down in time for the after party!
What if I can't make it to the summit?
Shhh. We won't tell! Kidding aside, always hike within your own limits and abilities. Hiking Mount Washington is a formidable challenge, even for seasoned hikers. However, with the right trail selection and the proper gear, it can be a great day for everyone. If you aren't able to do the summit hike, an AMC staff member at registration can help you select another great hike.
When can I start collecting pledge money?
Ready... set... go! You can start collecting donations right now!
Who can I speak to if I have other questions?
We're here to help. Call Director of Events and Marketing Krissy Fraser at firstname.lastname@example.org or (603) 356-2137 x231.