I know most people have already done these sorts of posts, so I figured I’d throw mine in for good measure.

2008 has been an exceptional year for Modern Hiker. As we approach our 400th post, Modern Hiker currently indexes almost 60 hikes in and around the Los Angeles area, and have watched as my write-ups and information pop up higher and higher on the Google page rankings.

This year also seemed to be the year that people really started taking notice of LA hiking — I mapped trails for Backpacker magazine, was interviewed by media outlets like SNEWS, the LA Times, and NPR’s Morning Edition (and ALMOST NBC Nightly News! Bad timing on that one). Readership was on a steady growing trend through the entire year, increasing over 200% from January to November — and then drastically spiking in December to numbers that honestly, I never thought I would get.

Even better than pure numbers, Modern Hiker readers tend to stick around the site for a while — leaving comments, responding to other readers, and emailing me questions and trail experiences. The site has become much more interactive over the last year, which keeps things interesting for everyone. Especially me.

So, thanks for reading. I hope to keep things steadily moving forward around here and, as always, welcome your input. In 2009, look for:

– revamped site design
– a new photography section
– increased coverage of the Santa Monica Mountains
– more hikes in Joshua Tree and Death Valley
– … and probably a lot more that I can’t predict!

Until then, keep reading and keep hiking!

Condor Peak via Trail Canyon 068