For Patricia Ellis Herr, mother of Alex and Sage, the family that hikes together stays together. Before age 6, Alex had climbed New Hampshire’s 48 highest mountains– all more than 4,000 feet– in just 15 months, even hiking through the winter. She completed the feat without her mother carrying her, and perhaps more amazingly, without complaining.
In fact, Alex decided to take on the quest with very little encouragement from her mother. As young Alex recently stated in an interview with Outside magazine, “It always feels great to hike a mountain when you get to the top. It’s good exercise and it’s fun.”
Patricia’s youngest daughter, Sage, now age 6, followed in Alex’s footsteps, also climbing their home state’s 48 highest mountains– at a slightly younger age than her big sister, according to their mom.
The Herr family’s story is an excellent reminder on this Mother’s Day weekend of the quiet and dedicated work done by so many women for their children. Patricia, who writes about climbing with Alex in her new book Up: A Mother and Daughter’s Peakbagging Adventure, treasures the time spent with her kids, stating, “I’m really lucky to be able to hike these mountains with my children. They’re great company and what’s really important to me is that they know firsthand that small does not mean weak, that girls are of course strong, and that big bold things are possible.”
Watch Patricia, Alex, and Sage in action: