Wednesday, November 9, 2011

It looks like I'm going...

It has been hard for me to make the final commitment to attempt the PCT in 2012. I have all the usual concerns but once my land mate agreed to take care of my cats for the five month trip, that was the final roadblock. I somehow felt a weight lift off my back and I could really plan this thing for real.

There you have it... right there, to the left, you see the three states that are included in the Pacific Crest Trail - 2,650 miles from Campo, CA to Manning Park, British Columbia. The details remain to be considered and at some point decided. What kinds of gear to take for which parts of the trail? Do I prepare all or most of my food before the trip and send it along to post offices and other pickup places? Or buy as I go? How can I train to make it likely I'll be able to complete the hike without major injury? What is the right thing to do?

Many people who have done this hike tell the same story. You can plan and plan but once you get out there, you just have to adapt and roll with what comes your way. Those that are the most adaptable are most likely to complete. So I will practice flexibility and not become attached to things that are out of my control. I can control the exercise I do in preparation to hike, I can't control the weather I have to hike in. I can plan my food and send it along, yet I can't control whether or not it is at the post office when I arrive. Knowing the difference should help me weather the inevitable storms I am sure to experience. A famous (in trail circles) woman with the trail name of Yogi has coined a phrase I really like and will adopt for my own. Embrace the brutality. This may seem an odd statement but I am sure you can guess this adventure won't simply be a walk in the park. If I can embrace the hard parts as well as the beauty I am that much farther ahead to begin with.

I have begun a trail journal over at The name of the journal is Walking North, if you should want to follow along. I hope to eventually have a link on the journal which will show, on google maps, my actual wear abouts as I meander along. We will see.


  1. I know you have the knowledge to survive in the backcountry hopefullly you know your environment well. Forgive my typing and spelling I hope to follow your trip journal so please make it acceable. good luck

  2. Anonymous, I will be pleased to share my trip with you. will be a good resource for the future. Thanks for commenting!

  3. Shelly,

    Found your journal on Postholer and your blog. Good for you!!! You will love it out there and it looks like a good year so far. I love my ULA Conduit pack and Tarzan and I used them in 2010. It even held the bear canister through the JMT. I am thinking of hiking from Campo this year too!!
    Send me an email.

    1. Zelda! Hello. I don't know why I didn't get this message but I am pleased to get it now. Great that you are thinking of hiking again this year. Will we see you at the KO? I hope this message gets to you via email.