Sitting in the shade on a bustling goat farm in Pescadero, CA is a bench with a plaque that reads:
get out and travel
Remembering Grant Biggers”
Grant loved visiting Harley Farms Goat Dairy with his family, and when he passed away in February 2021 at the age of 23, a beautiful redwood bench was made and placed on the farm in his honor. Grant’s parents, Bill and Karen Biggers, decided to further honor their son this year at Ridge to Bridge 2022.
Grant's bench at Harley Farms
Bill and Grant at Angels’ Landing, Zion National park, Nov. 2020
Bill describes Grant as always at his “happiest on the trail.” Resistant to the pace of the city and struggling with social groups, he enjoyed being outdoors the most, finding peace in natural open spaces. While Karen is mainly a hiker, and Bill a mountain-biker, Grant loved running most. The family still found a way to enjoy the trails together, however, with Grant keeping pace on foot while Bill rode his bike, often on trails through the open spaces of the Peninsula. One of the last parks Bill and Grant visited together was Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve in Woodside, one of their favorites. Grant was also a big traveler, walking from Northern California to Oregon, all over the U.S. and even New Zealand. He explored a lot of the places that are now on Bill and Karen’s bucket list, like Banff and Glacier National Parks.
With Grant’s birthday approaching on April 27th, Karen and Bill wanted to find a way to celebrate and honor him. It all came together when they saw that the 25th annual Ridge to Bridge event on April 30th featured a 25-mile bike ride – 25 miles, 25th event, 25th birthday! Bill and Karen saw a way to fundraise in honor of their son and support expanding trails and open spaces, the places Grant felt happiest.
At first they set a fundraising goal of $500, but Bill and Karen quickly received that, and more, from friends and family. Seeing another way to align with the number 25, they increased their goal to $2,500. They surpassed this goal as well, and ended up raising $3,100 for the Ridge Trail. Joining them on their fundraising team was their friend and Ridge Trail board member, Ross Heitkamp. They named their team the Mountain GOATs, “goat” being a nickname for Grant (reflective of his love for the goats at Harley Farm) and also standing for “Get Out And Travel” as an homage to Grant’s love of exploring the world.
Bill, Karen and team Mountain GOATs at Ridge to Bridge 2022
Beyond fundraising, Bill and Karen enjoyed participating in the Ridge to Bridge event itself, each in their own way. Bill has participated in the event’s bike ride a few times before, but this year was a new experience for him (riding in a group), and he enjoyed having company on the trail. Karen volunteered for the first time, greeting and orienting event participants at the checkpoint in Tennessee Valley. In addition to Ridge to Bridgers, other visitors were curious about the event and came up to the table to learn more. Karen enjoyed the opportunity to spread awareness about the Ridge Trail with others.
We’re so thankful for Karen and Bill and their participation through our Ridge to Bridge event, and to those friends and family who supported their fundraiser in Grant’s honor. Those funds will go towards the work we do every day to expand trails and open spaces around the Bay Area so more people, like Grant, can find peace and happiness in natural spaces near home.