It was sometime in early 2005 during my usual winter slump when I came up with the idea of hiking some of the tallest mountains in each state. Although I didn't expect to be the first with the idea I was pleasantly surprised when I found out through a quick internet search that there were plenty of people trying to reach the highest point in each state and that there exists a club for these "highpointers". This club and several guidebooks provide a wealth of information about what it takes to achieve this goal.
The idea of highpointing appealed to me for several reasons. It would combine several interests of mine - hiking, camping, traveling this beautiful country, and more importantly, allow me to spend time with my son, Kevin, on these shared interests. (I'll also stay hopeful that my wife, Pam, and daughters Emily and Colleen, will also occasionally want to join us.) After more research and thought, the idea expanded from hiking some local peaks to climbing all 48 of the highpoints in the contiguous United States. (I am reasonable - I've excluded Mount McKinley as a bit too extreme and costly.) Although the ultimate goal is 48 states, I will continue to remind myself that it is the journey that matters and I have the rest of my life to do it. The general plan is to get momentum with the states nearby to our home state of New York, switch the focus to the more difficult ones out West before age starts catching up to me too much, and then knock off the rest at our leisure and even into my retirement if I have to.
Early on, after driving up Jerimoth Hill on route 101 essentially to the top, Kevin showed his purist side by suggesting we should have walked up the road to actually climb the high point of Rhode Island. This led to a discussion of our own ground rules. First, we will do them together as long as possible, and second, we will hike up whenever that option reasonably exists. It is fair to start from a through road that does not exist just to bring people to the top. This is more stringent than the Highpointers club which, for example, recognizes a drive up Mount Washington as achieving the highpoint.
I put this web site together in response to my Mom's suggestion that I do a little better than my handwritten notes for trip logs. I hope you enjoy it and wish us luck as we fill in the yellow in the map above!
Bob and Kevin's Highpointing Adventures
Move mouse pointer over the highpoint icon for more information or click on completed ones to see the trip log.