FREDERICK COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) — About 22 hikers embarked on a journey to grant the wishes of many children who suffer from critical illnesses in the DMV area.

“We have a bunch of hikers who are out here today and we’re going to hike a marathon in the mountains to raise money and awareness for the Make-A-Wish to foundation and Mid-Atlantic,” Chairman of the Board Mike Manatos explained.

The hikers who participated in the challenge conquered a 26-mile journey through the Catoctin Trail. Hikers had been training physically for months to support the work of the Make-A-Wish foundation.

“We start in the pitch black, like four or five in the morning, and we end up about 11 to 12 hours later, 26 miles later and it’s a phenomenal opportunity to support these kids,” Manatos said.

People who participated also received a lanyard with a wish kid and their story attached to remind them of who they’re doing the hike for.

“We had a make-a-wish kid at our dinner last night who has gone through some unbelievable challenges and seeing those stories and other stories of the other kids that we serve.,” Hiker Jason Pappas explained.

“It just makes you want to do this and even though it’s going to be a tough hike, what they’ve gone through is so much bigger in comparison to what we’re doing.”

The trailblazer challenge will be fundraising for another four weeks and is expected to make over 100,000 dollars.