23rd Annual Seek the Peak Exceeds Fundraising Goal

North Conway, NH, July 18, 2023 – Hikers and sponsors participating in the 23rd annual Seek the Peak contributed over $195,000 to the nonprofit Mount Washington Observatory (MWOBS), funds that will propel MWOBS’ commitment to real-time weather data and forecasting in the White Mountains. This result significantly exceeded the 2023 goal of raising $170,000.

“We are amazed and inspired by our fundraising hikers, sponsors, Mount Washington partners, and volunteers,” Drew Bush, MWOBS Executive Director, said. “Their incredible efforts made it possible once again for the outdoor community to gather at this premier hiking event celebrating our trails and adventure lifestyle. It’s because of this community that we can continue our 90-year legacy of overcoming extremes to study weather and climate on New England’s highest peak.”

More than 290 participants raised funds in the lead-up to completing their hikes and gathering for the Après Hike Party on Saturday, July 15 at Great Glen Trails. Thirty sponsors provided vital support for the event, with 22 organizations exhibiting in the vendor village and many contributing gear and outdoor experiences to MWOBS’ epic gear raffle. Tuckerman Brewing Company hosted a beer garden at the Après Hike Party and, on Friday, organized a kick-off celebration so hikers could register early and gather for live music and additional gear raffles.

Observatory summit staff and volunteers gave weather station tours to more than 150 hikers who reached the summit. While summiting Mount Washington remains a focus for many, Seek the Peak is an inclusive peer-to-peer fundraising event welcoming participants of all ability levels. More than 20 hikers met at Pinkham Notch Visitor Center Saturday morning for the new Hike and Make Friends program, which joined hikers who wanted to go at a “Gentle Breeze,” “Near Gale,” or “Hurricane Force” pace. This program will be available again in 2024, when MWOBS hosts its 24th annual Seek the Peak on July 19-20.

The Top Three Individual Fundraisers this year were Brad Griswold (22nd year), who raised $25,116; Christopher Nichols (15th year), who raised $17,211; and Lee Eckhart (22nd year), who raised $6,288. The Higher Ground Seekers were the Top Team Fundraiser, led by captains Valerie Griswold and Eric Naples. And Minus 33 Merino Wool won the Top Business Team Fundraiser award, a new category that will continue in 2024. Each top individual fundraiser wins an educational overnight trip with one guest at MWOBS’ summit weather station. The top teams win a summit overnight trip with up to eight team members. All participants who raised $200 won a locally designed t-shirt, and all who raised $300 won an exclusive Cotopaxi backpack plus raffle ticket and other prizes.

“Seek the Peak fuels a significant portion of the Observatory’s annual budget,” said Charlie Buterbaugh, MWOBS Director of External Affairs. “Every participant helps this event make a major impact, ensuring our observers continue collecting essential data, writing critical forecasts, and providing innovative educational programs.”

Seek the Peak was made possible by Presenting Sponsors Great Glen Trails Outdoor Center and Eastern Mountain Sports, with additional valued support from Backpacker Magazine’s Get Outside Tour, Mount Washington Radio Group (93.5 WMWV, Magic 104.5, and Easy 95.3), Consolidated Communications (Fidium Fiber Internet), Martini Northern, Mt. Washington Auto Road, Appalachian Mountain Club, White Mountain National Forest, New Hampshire State Parks, Mount Washington Cog Railway, White Mountain Oil and Propane, and Tuckerman Brewing Company.


About Mount Washington Observatory:
Mount Washington Observatory (MWOBS) is a private, nonprofit, member-supported institution with a mission to advance understanding of the natural systems that create Earth’s weather and climate. It serves this mission by maintaining a weather station on the summit of Mount Washington, performing weather and climate research, conducting innovative science education programs, and interpreting the heritage of the Mount Washington region. Our summit facility is located within Mount Washington State Park. For more information, call 603-356-2137 or visit mountwashington.org.

Charlie Buterbaugh, Director of External Affairs
(603) 356-2137, ext. 211

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