One Year Removed, My Pacific Crest Trail Story in 12 Pictures.
I've been fortunate to have done some pretty cool things in my life. A few of these include but are not limited to, visiting the original Ben & Jerry's factory (TWICE!), marching for a premier college marching band, sledding off of my roof when I was a little kid, graduating college, and riding the Great Bear at Hershey Park with my family. However, the most trying, mentally and physically exhausting thing I've ever done was walk from Mexico to Canada via the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT).
This wasn't merely an experience for me, it became a part of who I am. I'll be one of the first ones to tell you, go after what you want, and tear down that invisible wall you've put up between you and what you want.
I kept a journal on the PCT and read it occasionally when I need a fresh of breath air. I can normally remember every instance that happened when I start reading. For example, that first poop on trail, my first rattlesnake, that feeling when my resupply package didn't show up, and that feeling when you wake up 8 miles from the Canadian boarder and are only hours away from seeing your Dad for the first time in months.
I took 6000+ Pictures while on trail. Here's my attempt to boil my experience down to 12.
To start we need to start at the beginning, the southern terminus. I had no idea what I was about to get myself into.
Starting out; May 8th 2016, 10:30pm
The Desert is EXTREMELY mountainous, HOT, and Dusty.
You Can't Do This Alone!
Tons, and I mean TONS of people come out to help you on your journey across America. I know a bunch did for me, and I never would have made it without them. This is the famous Ziggy & the Bear's place in Southern California.
Immaculate sunsets become the primetime nightly programming.
The Sierras did not disappoint.
Packing 50 pounds out of Kennedy Meadows was worth it. So was eating two pints of Ben & Jerry's back to back. #noregrets
The world became my bath tub.
I tried jumping in as many alpine lakes as I possibly could. How could you not? This lake looks incredible! Sure, it was a bit over refreshing on the temperature scale, but I couldn't not go for a dip.
Hiking is optional, Shenanigans is mandatory.
Spend a lot of time in your own head and you'll go slightly crazy too.
One state down, two to go!
Crater lake is more than a lake. Go sit on the banks of it and you'll see what I mean.
Oregon forests must be seen to be believed.
I couldn't get over how green everything was, and how the mistique of clouds rolling through the forest made it feel like a dream.
Washington At Last
The feelings when I hit Washington were that of humility and excitement that I had actually made it this far. I kept hearing "The best is yet to come..."
Reflection and Embracing the Conclusion
The last few nights I camped out on top of ridges and mountaintops. It was the best thing I could have done to finish the hike. It put me in a state of reflection and humility every night to really soak in what was around me. To feel the rays of sun on my face just that little bit longer was an incredible blessing.
I put a semi-colon because the story isn't finished. Sure, the PCT journey may have come to an end, but the journey of life keeps going.
To see some more in depth accounts of my PCT journey check out the archive below for the first 1000 miles or so!
If you or anyone you know is even considering THINKING about doing the trail get in touch with me! I'll give you any insight I can and answer any questions you may have!
Until next time,