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Dean Newton Hikes Through The Grand Canyon for Rose Brooks Center

Rose Brooks Center did a short interview with Dean Newton – RBC Board Member and outdoorsman extraordinaire – on his upcoming Grand Canyon hike.  Dean’s adventure is a terrific example of creative fundraising and how one committed individual can support Rose Brooks Center in a tremendous way. You can support Dean by making a donation in honor of the Grand Canyon hike.
RBC: Tell us about the Grand Canyon hike.  

Dean: I am hiking the Grand Canyon from rim to rim.  As the crow flies, it’s about 18 miles. On foot it is over 21 miles.  The hike is challenging for a couple of reasons.  In addition to the distance, the terrain is uneven and the elevation changes are intense: 5,700 vertical feet down and approximately 12 miles down. Then another 9 miles and 4,500 vertical feet up.  With changes in elevation come extreme temperatures, ranging from freezing cold on the rim to triple digit heat on the canyon floor.  Hikers can experience 13 different climate zones along the way.  The larger challenge is that I am doing this hike in a day. The National Park Service and Grand Canyon Park do not endorse doing this hike in one day.  Hikers run the risk of hypnatremia, dehydration and extreme heat exhaustion.   While there are serious risks, the reward of challenging myself and helping others (who face far greater challenges than anything I will experience on this trip) was simply too compelling.

RBC: Not being outdoorsy myself, this sounds intense – and a little crazy.  What made you want to do it?

Dean: Domestic violence has touched my life in many ways. I grew up in a household that included significant domestic violence. As a lawyer, I have counseled several friends who have struggled with domestic violence issues.  As a result of my background, ending the cycle of violence and helping survivors and their children move toward safe and independent violence-free lives is a cause that is extremely important to me.

As a Rose Brooks board member, I realize the central role the organization plays to provide a safe home for literally thousands of women and children in the area.   Unfortunately, the growing demands for services at Rose Brooks is outpacing the resources. Last year Rose Brooks had to turn away 2700 women and children.  That is simply unacceptable.  We must raise more money to address this problem.
As I looked to find a way to raise money, I wanted to do something different.  I thought an extreme challenge such as the Grand Canyon hike would be a good way to raise awareness of this acute problem in the area.

RBC: Have you done anything like this before? 

Dean: Nothing even close to this magnitude! But perhaps I am understating when I say that.

RBC: It sounds like an incredibly intense day.  I assume you’ve had to do some training to prepare for the hike.  What does that include? 

Dean: Fortunately, I have been training for the last few months with John Brown at Revolution Gym. He has been really helpful in getting me prepared for this hike.  My training has been a combination of cardio and weight training. The cardio is to build stamina and strengthen the legs. The weight training emphasizes the body core since I will be carrying a pack weighing approximately 15 pounds for an extended period of time.

RBC: What do your friends/family think of you doing this? 

They think I am crazy.  But everyone has been incredibly supportive. My kids are enjoying the preparation as they learn more than they every thought they needed to know about all things related to the Grand Canyon.

RBC: Why did you choose RBC as the beneficiary for the hike? 

Dean: As I mentioned, as a child growing up in a violent household, I know from personal experience the impact domestic violence can have on a family.  If we did not have access to the support and services provided by organizations like Rose Brooks Center, I do not know where we would be today.  Rose Brooks Center is the leader in innovative domestic violence programs and support.  They literally are saving lives every day and 100% of every dollar I raise will go directly to Rose Brooks to help victims and their families.

RBC: How does Rose Brooks Center benefit from this hike?

I am asking friends and family to sponsor my hike. They have been both supportive and generous.  Any money raised will be used to help purchase formula for babies, meals for moms and their families as well as safe shelter and counseling for victims and their families. Folks interested can still donate.

To make a donation in support of Dean Newton, please CLICK HERE.