In terms of training specificity, it would make the most sense to train for hiking by -- hiking. But winter in New England paired with my weird work hours makes hiking a bit of a challenge. Sure, there are some die hard hikers out there who would gladly trek through 2 feet of snow in the dark for training purposes. I opted for the wimpy version -- treadmill and other cardio equipment.
I essentially had 4 types of cardio workouts:
1) Long flat runs
2) Short, fast runs
4) Weighted workouts
The long flat runs I tried to make 7 or more miles. I didn't worry about speed (I never do!) I just wanted to get moving and get some miles under me. The short fast runs (Or shall I say, short and slow but slightly faster than the long run pace) were 3 or 4 miles. An after work get a few miles in workout. The hill workouts were done outside weather permitting. If the weather sucked, I did this treadmill workout. And the weighted workouts were done with a 15 pound weighted vest. I often combined the weighted workouts with the others, so maybe a weighted incline treadmill workout or a weighted short run. I didn't do long runs with the weighted vest, but often I would go on long walks with the vest.
I tried for a minimum of 4 cardio workouts per week, sometimes more, though there were, admittedly a couple weeks where I had a less, depending on how I felt or if I had to stay late at work. But for the most part, I treated them as the prep work for day after day of the ultimate cardio experience.
Am I ready? Truthfully, I'm not sure I am. But I also think I could workout religiously for the next 6 months and still not feel ready. I'm just gonna have to go for it.