AFK Mount Baker: Crystal’s Climb

We’re teaming up with AFK participants to get the lowdown on our BAWT signature trips. Get inspired by individuals who have already fundraised their way to adventure and made a direct impact on Bay Area youth. Crystal is a creative fundraiser and adventurer who is on her way to climb Mount Baker. Despite having her previous trip canceled in 2020, she has remained positive and dedicated to making an impact for BAWT. Read more about Crystal’s story and start planning your first AFK adventure by registering here. 

 Share with our audience a little bit about yourself and/or your adventure team.

 I grew up in the Bay Area. Our team is a mixture of friends who I met from high school, through mutual friends, and through our local climbing gym. All the women share a love of the outdoors, whether that’s hiking, climbing, or swimming, but for some this will be their first mountaineering trip.  

Q: Share with us why you’re interested in BAWT’s work. I heard about BAWT because I was looking for a reputable organization to donate some outdoor gear to, and a friend suggested BAWT.

Growing up in the area and having had access to so many resources in my life, I’m interested in how we can make getting outdoors easier, less scary, and more accessible for all people. I think BAWT does a really good job at building community leaders and providing resources that leaders can then share with the community.  

 Q: How did you hear about Adventures for Kids and what made you register? 

I probably have too much time on my hands and was digging around the website. I was really intrigued by the concept, the fundraising challenge, and the opportunity to try mountaineering.   

Q: What adventure are you going on or did you complete?  

Our team will be going on a trip to Mt. Baker (fingers crossed). We were scheduled to go last year but our trip was delayed due to Covid.  

 Q: How are you (or how did you) train for your adventure? Any interesting stories to share around training? 

Honestly, it’s been a tough year mentally and logistically for all of us. When 2020 started we had big goals with weekly training plans that included a mixture of cardio, weight training, and HIIT type classes, and were also going on group hikes. Those plans were tough to follow through on given the pandemic, but we’re all starting to get back into it and have done a couple of self-lead Zoom style classes with each other.   

Q: What is something you learned from your experience with AFK (whether you’ve completed a trip or not)?

 I initially signed up and got my friends on board because we were stoked about the opportunity to go to Mt. Baker. But I actually think that the fundraising and training have unexpectedly been really fun for us. It’s definitely given us a reason to talk and brainstorm and sweat together.   

Q: What’s been your experience with fundraising for AFK? 

Asking your network for money or getting creative with ways to raise money has honestly been really fun. Pre-covid, one of our members organized a bartending event where we got to guest-bartend and keep the tips, which was a blast. To get creative, you can think about what talents and hobbies you have, and how to turn that into donations for BAWT. If you’re crafty, you can sell pottery or knit, and I’ve done a series of informal pop-up ramen dinners (with the help of a couple close friends) to raise money. Also, definitely take advantage of corporate matches, as it’s a really easy way to multiply your contribution.  

 Q: What advice would you give to someone considering signing up for AFK? Don’t be intimidated by the fundraising amount! Your network is probably much more receptive than you think. I found that sharing my story and thoughts on social media (along with the fundraising link), can result in unexpected donations. Also — this one is tactical, make a short url using or something similar so that people can remember it more easily.