From Snoqualmie, I started to edge into the snow again. Snow patches here were especially dangerous since the snow, melting during the day, had frozen into solid ice. On my way up, I met a couple of guys who were convinced that my insistence to go on was nothing short of a death wish. In … Continue reading PCT Finale
There is a small gas station and convenience store at White Pass. There is also a PCT log book, tables and chairs for hikers, and a case full of hot, fried, greasy food. As I came down to the store, my left leg started to feel some pain, so I figured I would let it … Continue reading The Pain and the Agony
The first thirty miles or so of the PCT in Washington are an exercise in patience. These miles wind around aimlessly through woods, obnoxiously close to civilization, with virtually no grand views of the mountains and are, as we say in backpacking circles, one huge PUD (Pointless Up-and-Down.) After completing these miles, one at last … Continue reading Hello, Washington!
Leaving Sisters, I found that I could at least pick out my general destination. Looking out across the landscape, I could identify the major peaks I was to visit, and at the lower elevations, I could even occasionally find solid trail. One morning, I found that the trail lay just below me--I could see it. … Continue reading Bridge of the Gods
As I came into Oregon, I made good mileage over easy terrain. The Oregon section of the PCT is known for being the easiest section of the trail. This is because volcanic peaks rise out of a flat plateau, so the trail tends to follow flat ground to the base of a tall peak, then circle … Continue reading Adventures in Oregon
From Lassen National Park, I faced a dry stretch of walking across the Hat Creek Rim, an area as waterless as the desert. I primarily recall this stretch as being very enjoyable hiking, and though I was thirsty when I came into my next resupply at Old Station, it doesn't stand out in memory (this … Continue reading On to Oregon
The section from this last incident until the Oregon border is difficult for me to write about for the simple reason that I don't remember much about it. This was where I felt that I really started to get a feel for thru hiking, to understand the rhythm of the trail and to get a grip … Continue reading Sierras to Cascades
I have heard that Yosemite is a beautiful place. I wouldn't know, since the PCT apparently doesn't go through the beautiful part of the park. My main memories of Yosemite are of mud and swarms of mosquitoes. I had trusted the advice of other hikers and brought along some ultralight gloves and netting to protect … Continue reading Arrest!
Kennedy Meadows is a tiny community of less than a hundred people (at least, of 2012.) However, this entire community is intimately connecting with thru-hikers who, every June, take over their general store and hamburger stand, providing considerable income to the few local residents. My first order of business was to shower (a plywood and … Continue reading High Sierras
Imagine yourself stumbling across the barren empty desert. Hot, dry wind tears at your face while a scorching heat beats down on you. As time drags by, you continually calculate the distance to your next water cache so you can know how much water you're allowed to drink. Distance turns into an illusion, and you … Continue reading Angels, Magic, and Unicorns