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Rlhdancer - Pacific Crest Trail Journal - 2013

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Split & Two Step
City: Pleasanton
State: California
Country: USA
Begins: Apr 15, 2013
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Sun, Apr 14th, 2013
Start: Pleasanton, CA
End: San Diego
Daily Distance: 0
Daily Ascent: 0
Daily Descent: 0

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 1,306
Journal Visits: 111,982
Guestbook Views: 6,091
Guestbook Entrys: 99

Pacific Crest Trail Map

(Click image for full size)

Split and Two Step packs up and ready to go

The last thru-hike intermission zero, trail mile "prestart", Day 0

The last zero of our thru-hike intermission, trail mile "prestart", Day 0

We have only made it to San Diego, and already we have entered a different world!

Last night was short, having retired at 1:00am this morning and arising about six hours later. But yesterday's busy day resulted in a relaxing morning putting the final touches on getting our house in order for our long absence. We were to leave our house at 11:00am for a flight to San Diego leaving at 12:55pm. After receiving a ride to the airport from Ron, we were soon boarding our plane.

From San Diego near the start of the PCT, we had arranged to stay at the home of a couple of trail angels named Scout and Frodo Mann. We arrived at the airport, where they were set to pick us up, about half an hour late, but Scout was unperturbed. He was waiting with another PCT hiker named SkinnyD from Houston, Texas, and within twenty minutes we were driven to Scout's home.

Suddenly we were in a different world. The house is decorated in PCT memorabilia. Pictures of Scout's and Frodo's John Muir Trail and PCT thru-hikes, and pins and plaques with the PCT logo abound. Even more exciting were 23 prospective thru-hikers who are staying with Scout and Frodo tonight with the intention of starting the 2700 mile trail tomorrow. Abruptly, we were in a group who didn't think walking north for 5+ months is crazy, whose major subjects of discussion is where do you come from, what are you going to carry, and how much does your pack weigh?

The group, in addition to SkinnyD, includes Ingrid and Tracy, currently from Scotland, Sophie from England, Eric from Portland, Jill and Michael from Michigan, Tim and Zack from Missouri, Twice from Alaska, and many others.

Unlike at the start of the AT where almost everyone was fumbling with their gear (with the exception of Jay and Shilo), this group is very gear savvy, and most are quoting base weights well under twenty pounds. Gear talk is constant, and even a little unnerving. At this late date, Two Step and I are comfortable, and stuck, with what we have chosen, but when you are shown clever new light weight solar chargers and hybrid tyvec/polycro industry table ground cloths, it's hard not to have one of those "What was I thinking" moments.

Scout and Frodo have help in servicing this massive group of hikers. They have organized a whole group of helpers to take turns preparing dinners. It was a gourmet dinner that combined both quality and hiker-friendly quantities. There were appetizers of halved tomatoes with melted cheese, pine nuts and spicy sauce as well as baked garlic on sourdough bread. For the main course, we were treated to spaghetti with a chicken, vegetable, and tomato sauce, as well as asparagus and salad. For desert we had fresh pies brought by Mom herself from Mom's Pie in Julien. There was even a selection of wines to choose from, making this among the most decadently delicious meals I've enjoyed near a trail.

Our group sat about the rest of the evening discussing the trail - "where is the best burger in the trail? The Jose burger at Paradise Cafe." "The best bakery is in Stehekin. " "Where is your first resupply." But shortly after 9:00pm the group broke up, and we retired for our last pre-hike night under a roof. The pull-out bed is a real treat for us as many hikers are camping on the floor on this unusually rainy, cold San Diego night.

Staged and ready for the PCT,
Split and Two Step

Entry 3 of 164
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Journal Photo

Split And Two Step Northward Bound On The PCT

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:


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