I sat for and passed the GCFA exam today! All the studying was worth it, as I passed with an 88%. I was shooting for over a 90, but I'll take it. The exam was definitely challenging, but if you study the books (and know where the information is in the books) you'll do ok. That, and it helps if you are passionate and really like the material.
I'll probably take the rest of this year off from studying, but it will be back to the grind after New Years. It looks like the next cert to go after will be the CISSP.