Oregon mom plans 50 waterfall hikes before son's first birthday

Six months ago, Alivea Binder set out on a mission to hike to 50 waterfalls by July 28.

That's the first birthday of her son, Rowdy. When Binder found herself a single mom last year, the extreme hiking goal seemed like one way to move on.

"I needed some sort of outlet and obviously being a single mom, you're broke," Binder said Friday.

She now lives near Eugene, but she's originally from Olympia.

So far, she's hiked 49 different waterfalls and her goal-reaching 50th trek will be to Palouse Falls near Spokane.

Brennan Falls and Tumwater Falls in Washington are two of her favorites. 

"Even if you don't have the same story or situation that I do," Binder said, "just get outside and be active—especially to get your kid outside, too."

Binder used the app AllTrails to find the nearest hikes that led to waterfalls. The app's social feature allows all hikers to leave comments about trail conditions.

Even at 10 months old, the hiking has made Rowdy quite the outdoorsman.

"Oh my goodness—he loves them," Binder said. "He is a total Pacific Northwest baby through and through."

Even in the rain.

"You can tell he's in his element," she said. "Even when it's pouring down rain—he loves it."

The exercise isn't the only benefit of hiking for the mother and son.

"I felt like every hike that I went on, it was nice to unplug and not pay attention to anything except Rowdy and I," she said. "When you're hiking, you're not wrapped up in the chaos of your mind."

© 2017 KING-TV


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