It all started out with Sue Trammell wanting to get in shape so she would look better in pictures during an upcoming family trip.

That’s when she first began hiking to Provo’s iconic white Y in earnest, making the 1.1-mile trek up the mountain approximately three times a week.

But it soon became much more than that. Trammell started doing it for her health — both mental and physical.

“It’s a wonderful way to plan and meditate and to pray for all your kids,” she said. “It just became something, it was like therapy.”

Trammell’s normal routine includes walking from her house in Provo to the trailhead, then up to the Y every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Now she’s been doing it for about 7 years, and passed the 1,000-hikes milestone in September.

She hikes year-round, and says winter is actually her favorite time to be on the trail.

“It’s so quiet, and there aren’t as many people around and it’s just very nice,” she said.

She loves living near enough the trailhead to walk there, and says it’s a large part of what keeps her from downsizing from the large home in which she raised her nine children.

If she can get one of her 35 grandkids to go with her, she’ll even fit in a fourth hike on Saturday, taking along trash bags so the kids can help her keep the trail trash-free.

Mostly, she hikes by herself, though she said she meets many friends along the trail.

“There’s a real group that does this all the time,” she said. “There’s more than one crazy person in the village.”

She used to have a regular hiking companion in her Scottish Terrier, Robbie. But, Trammell said, Robbie is 77 years old in dog years now, and has a little more trouble getting up the mountain than he used to.

“He gets mad if I go without him, so I try to take him once a week,” Trammell laughed.

Other than her hiking — she also tries to summit Mount Timpanogos twice a year, though she didn’t hike it this year — Trammell says she likes to cook, read and spend time with her kids and grandkids, “Things older women like.”

“I don’t do anything special or particularly talented,” she said.

Ed Trammell would disagree. He is far more proud of his wife’s 1,000-hike milestone than she is, and planned a celebration with as many of their kids as could make it on Saturday.

“Amazing,” “strong,” and “caring” are just a few of the compliments Ed Trammell heaped upon his wife. Nothing deters her, he said, not even bad weather. According to Ed Trammell, she’s worn out several pairs of hiking shoes, two sets of ice cleats, one Scottie dog and one very admiring husband.

And he beams with pride not just for her hiking milestone, but for her life in general.

“She is just the most serving person,” Ed Trammell said, explaining how she serves those with mental and physical disabilities as part of her calling with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. “She is constantly serving others.”

Katie England covers politics, the environment and courts for the Daily Herald. She can be reached at 801-344-2599 or

Katie England covers politics, county government and southern Utah County for the Daily Herald. She can be reached at 801-344-2599 or

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