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Lbalcken - Pacific Crest Trail Journal - 2012

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City: Helena
State: MT
Country: United States
Begins: Jun 15, 2012
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Sat, Mar 24th, 2012
Start: Helena, MT
End: Helena, MT

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 788
Journal Visits: 4,224
Guestbook Views: 310
Guestbook Entrys: 4

Gear list

Pacific Crest Trail Map

(Click image for full size)

Keepin' it real in the Spanish Peaks

Impulse buys and the local press

I'm starting to think that if the government really wants to stimulate the economy, they should start promoting thru-hiking. The amount of money I've spent on gear in the past few years could probably feed a small family for six months! My latest purchase is a Western Mountaineering Ultralite sleeping bag. From what I've heard, it's the Cadillac of down bags: 850-fill down, water-resistant fabric, and a conservative temperature rating of 20 degrees F, all for 1lb 13 oz. If it gets me through my triple crown (which could take ten years...) then it's worth the $ 400 price tag.

Then there was my new Outdoor Research Helium rain jacket - a mere 6 oz, on sale for $ 60. Of course I had to follow that with a new pair of North Face Paramount Valley convertible pants, to replace the two pair of mine that have developed new ventilation systems in awkward places. So far that's all the damage I've done...but there are still three months to go.

Of lesser importance than my gear purchases is a recent article in the local Helena newspaper. A young couple is planning to hike 2,000 miles from central California to Canada, shedding an apartment and two jobs before they go. What could possibly possess these crazy kids to exile themselves to the wilderness and a diet of rehydrated curry? I think you know the answer. Check out this link to see the whole article. It made for a very embarrassing day for me, fielding, "Hey you!" comments around town when people recognized me from the picture. Ahh, the hardships of fame...

Andrew (Shaggy) is already on the trail, hiking the Hayduke from Arches to Zion. As intensely jealous as I am, I know the semi-waterless route would be a little above my skill level - not to mention my thirst- and rattlesnake-tolerances. But he's loving it, and I'm stuck here working with screaming kids and buying gear to assuage my frustrations. You can read his trail journals on this site, under Shaggy, in the Heyduke section. Or go to, and remember to sign both our guestbooks!

Entry 3 of 4
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A Girl, Shoes, And Miles Of Trail

Lauren (for now)


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