N.H. woman becomes first to accomplish White Mountains hiking feat in single year

A New Hampshire woman has become the first known person to complete a vaunted White Mountains hiking challenge – which takes some hikers a lifetime – within a single year.

Sue Johnston of Littleton, NH hiked each of the state’s 4,000-foot mountains in January, and then again in February, and in March, and so on, for a total of 576 peaks in 2016 – plus some extracurriculars.

The quest to hike all 48 Granite State mountains on “The List” in each calendar month is called “The Grid.” Only 70 people have finished it, including Johnston in 2003, when she became the first woman and third overall.

By hiking The Grid in a single year, she has created a new bar for hikers who take on increasingly difficult challenges in the White Mountains.

Johnston, a 51-year-old, adds the accomplishment to a hiking and running résumé that includes 26 100-mile races, more than a dozen long trails hiked end-to-end and very nearly the high points in all 50 states.

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