The author Jack London is responsible for many well known and loved novels about the American West including White Fang and The Call of the Wild. He lived from 1876 to 1916 and thus 2016 marks the 100th anniversary of his life. He lived in Sonoma Valley and his home and ranch are now preserved within the Jack London State Historic Park.
In commemoration of this milestone the park has created the Klondike Challenge to encourage people to get outdoors and develop some of the same adventurous spirit exhibited by Jack in his lifetime. The challenge's goal of getting people to walk or hike 500 miles in 2016 recalls the distance he traveled from the Yukon to the Klondike at the turn of the 20th century during the Alaskan Gold Rush. He experiences during this adventure affected his writing for years afterwards.
Fund Raising Goal
The Challenge is also attempting to help raise badly needed funds to help restore trails within the park. California has gone through several lean years of budgetary crises that at times have threatened to shut down much of its impressive state park system. Today a large portion of the work previously done by park employees are now handled by volunteers. For those who cannot donate time and effort, donating dollars is a great way to help bridge the gap.
The campaign's stated goal is $500, $1 for every mile we intend to walk/hike during the year. Anything amount above that would be fantastic. All of the proceeds received will be donated towards trail restoration at the park and I'll cover the credit card payment fees so that 100% of the funds donated end up being spent on the trails.
Our personal goal for the Klondike Challenge itself is to walk/hike at least 500 miles in the Bay Area during 2016. We'll keep track of our progress with the Challenge organizers, here via campaign updates and on my Hiking Trailhead logbook page. For walks not at parks or on trails I'll also try to set up a Map My Hike account to record everything.
If you're in the Bay Area and want to participate you can sign up on the Klondike Challenge page. Be sure to specify "Team HikingTrailhead.com" when signing up. We're not sure what benefit derives from a team effort, but we figured it couldn't hurt.