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Begins: Apr 26, 2009
Date: Sun, Sep 13th, 2009
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Pacific Crest Trail Map
Armed with a perfect weather forecast, I set out to finish this thing. The trail finishes on the eastern side of the divide, so it is much sunnier and drier than the Glacier Peak Wilderness. I started out with Iceaxe, Birdman, and Bernie and Stacy, but once again my surplus of time soon found me on my own. Why hike 26 miles when I can hike 21 and still finish with time to spare?
It was an uneventful final four days. Beautiful weather and no bugs. Lakeview ridge was one of the best viewpoints on the entire trail. I met up with Bernie and Stacy as they were coming back from the border. Some people elect not to cross the border and backtrack 30 miles and get picked up by a friend or family member. On September 13th I even managed to scrounge up some final berries and went for a brief swim in Hopkins Lake. The warm weather was incredible. How is it possible for it to be borderline too hot in mid September in the mountains?
As could be reasonably expected, there's no grand moment when you finish this sucker. The monument is just a tiny little thing. Sort of lame. It doesn't matter. It's the 125 days of walking 2,656 miles I will remember. Each one, if you can believe it, a good one. That's not looking back with rose-tinted glasses either. I don't have any glasses in my possession anymore. My sunglasses fell off my head somewhere back in Oregon. Add that to my PCT lost gear list: a pair of socks and the stuff sack to my tent. Not too horrible.
So that's all folks. I hope you enjoyed the blog. If the final few entries don't have photos, come back in week or so to see the final disposable camera masterpieces. Hopefully I'll remember to delete this line when I do add the pics.
Like Jerry Springer (is he still on?), who ends his show with a little sermon to delude himself that his show is more than just a bunch of white trash cussing and brawling, maybe I should end with some final thoughts. Nah, I'll leave that for others. I've written enough, too much, that's for sure. A few quotes I either discovered or remembered during this whole PCT "summer of couscous" tour:
1) The quote that inspired me to start walking ---
"Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time." - Steven Wright
2) A quote from the long and crazy state of California ---
California is the best place because of we are a diversified economy. What state has entertainment, music, agriculture, biotechnology, nanotechnology, green technology, high technology? Look at other states. Texas? Oil. Florida? Old people. Whatever. We have a whole bunch of things." - Arnold Schwarzenegger, describing how well off California is
3) I learned an important truth in the the Pacific Northwest ---
"You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer." - Frank Zappa, printed on the bathroom wall of The Walking Man Brewery
4) And finally, the quote I remembered when I passed from Washington into British Columbia, Canada ---
"The farther one travels, the less one knows." - George Harrison, "The Inner Light"
The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a 2,650-mile national scenic trail that runs from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon and Washington. The PCT traverses 24 national forests, 37 wilderness areas and 7 national parks. The PCT passes through 6 out of 7 of North Americas ecozones. Learn more: www.pcta.org