I’m Natalie. You may also know me as Nat @ Nite, on weekends from Midnight-6am on 98.9 The Bull.
I’ll give a little background on myself since I’m a pretty new face here at The Bull. I started this adventure in July last summer and I couldn’t be happier. I love, love country music. In fact I met my boyfriend, Chase, at Watershed, which is pretty much any country music fan’s concert dream come true (seriously, look it up).
I was born and raised in the great Pacific Northwest in the small rural community of Maple Valley. I grew up water skiing in the summer and snow skiing in the winter. My childhood home was surrounded by woods and I’d spend hours and hours just exploring in my own backyard. I was a Girl Scout for 6 years where being outside was a big deal for our Troop, and I was a part of a program in my senior year of high school called Outdoor Academy where we would go on hikes for field trips. So I may as well be best buds with Sasquatch.
I give a lot of credit to Outdoor Academy for forming my love of hiking. To provide more insight into what this was, my high school combined three required classes – English, Physical Education, and Environmental Science – into one big co-joined curriculum. My favorite was when we would go on hikes. The first hike of the year was Poo Poo Point (seriously, look it up) and we finished the year with the advanced Mailbox Peak hike. In-between were several others that got us ready for that big finale. I also played high school lacrosse, so I was basically in pretty decent physical shape. And I was also a teenager with an inexplicable amount of energy. I am now 22 years old and not quite in the same shape. If you were to ask me to come with you to hike Mailbox Peak tomorrow, I’d have to say “I hope you’re ready to carry me”.
I’m not currently a hiking junkie. I don’t know all the hidden treasures in the State and I most definitely will not be climbing Mt. Rainier any day (or year) soon. But. I would love for that to change. I want to revive my Outdoor Academy self. I’d call this a New Year’s Resolution, but that title is a failure sentence. I’d rather just make this an achievable 2020 challenge to become more active. The gym is not exactly my happy place; I’m not a fan of the treadmill, stairmaster, or cycling machine thingy. Whenever I use one of those, I think ‘this would be so much more fun if I was outside doing the real thing’. So why don’t I?
So here’s my 2020 challenge. I want to make a personal list of my “Top 20 Hikes in Washington”. To do this, I need to go on at least 20 hikes. And of course, to make it even more fun, I’m going to do this all before 2021. (Get it? Top 20 in ‘20?) This allows me to reach my minimum and beyond. I am a little late on starting, given it’s already the third month of the year, but who really wanted to hike in the Rainageddon of January/February?
Why would I want to share my aspiration with the world? I want you to be a part of this with me. To hold me accountable and encourage me not give up. So I don’t pick up the XBox controller on a beautiful Saturday when I could be outside hiking and exploring.
I also want your help. My knowledge of hikes comes down to past experiences and the Washington Trails Association’s hike finder. I want to know about those hidden treasures or recommendations from a person who’s actually been out there and experienced it. Or even a recommendation for something you haven’t done and I can be the guinea pig that reports back.
Thank you, friends, for reading, recommending, and encouraging. I’m really looking forward to reporting back on this fun, hopefully more sun than rain-soaked, challenging adventure of mine. Stay tuned!