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Begins: Apr 20, 2015
Date: Sat, Jul 18th, 2015
Daily Distance: 0
Trip Distance: 992.6
Entry Visits: 3,050
Journal Visits: 37,303
Guestbook Views: 2,195
Guestbook Entrys: 54
Pacific Crest Trail Map
Update on what has happened.
After flying home I went to an ankle and foot doctor, and he recommended I have a MRI. The doctor had taken a couple of X-rays, and with those and the information from the X-rays done at the hospital in Quincy, California there wasn't any bone damage, so I needed the MRI to see if there was "soft tissue" damage. Had to wait a few days to get the MRI.
The day after the MRI the doctor called me and said I had two injuries. One was the tendon that goes under the ankle bone on the inside of the foot. There was an approximately a 3 cm longitudinal tear in that tendon. This had been hurting in this area and in my arch for many days. The other injury was the tendon on top of my foot, between the ankle and my shin. This tendon had gotten very irritated, and was really painful especially as I went downhill, or decelerated. I guess this top tendon was trying to compensate for the loss in strength of the tendon with the tear.
The doctor gave me some options. One, he could make me a stiff ankle support so I could try going back out on the PCT. This might work, although the stiffness might make hiking challenging, and my ankle might get worse over time. Could end up needing help to get off the trail. The other option was surgery to fix the damage. I could wait on the repair, but a build up of scar tissue could make the repair more difficult.
I chose the survey.
In a few more days I will have the surgery. The repair may only take 45 minutes or so, if there is only the longitudinal tear to repair. If the damaged tendon also stretched, then the tendon will need to be tightened and the surgery could take twice as long. The doctor may also need to do something to the tendon on top of my foot, but this would be minor compared to the other tendon.
After the surgery recovery starts, which depends on what repair work is done will have an impact on the recovery time. Could be 8 to 12 weeks before I can start training more seriously to hike. Completing the PCT this year isn't going to happen, but I will try to get back out there next year and start where I came off the trail.
How did this injury happen? I don't know, but the first time I remember my left ankle swelling was the evening after we came down from you going to the top of Mount Whitney. The ankle was OK and not OK after that, and just got more and more difficult to walk on. I was hoping it would heal, but this injury wasn't something that could heal while continuing to hike. This may of started from some previous injury done a long time ago, or it just happened from hiking on the rocky trail. Although my right ankle went the same distance and feels great. I suppose that continuing to bike for about another 500 miles may of had an effect on the damage to the tendon. (Ya think.) I did not want to get off the trail. Those who have hiked similar long distance trails know YOU WANT TO FINISH!
I did complete 1265.4 miles of the PCT this year.
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