I found the phrase “make for the hills” in the following sentence of the article titled “The Hex on Paul Ryan” in New York Times Sept 3 issue:
“The best morsel of political advice I can offer? If you catch even the faintest whisper that you might be nominated for the vice presidency, ‘make for the hills.’ Run as fast as Paul Ryan pretends to. Your reputation depends on it. Maybe your sanity, too."
I first thought “make for the hills” is a popular, everyday-use idiom meaning ‘to head (challenge) for the high hills (goals),’ but when I checked online English Dictionaries to make sure of it, I found none of Cambridge, Oxford, and Merriam-Webster English dictionary registers either of ‘make for hills’ or ‘head for the hills”
On the other hand, Google Ngram registers both “make for the hills’” and “head for the hills,” showing the trend of the usage of the former almost extinct being replaced around 1950 by “head for the hills,” which emerged as an synonym for “make for the hills’” around 1920.
I wonder whether “Make for the hills” is still a current English idiom that I can tell young people “You should ‘make for the hills’ in order to achieve your dream,” or it is better for me to use other straightforward expressions.
My first impression of ‘the hills’ here was ‘the goals for you to achieve, the obstacles that you have to conquer.’ Am I wrong?