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City: Canon City
Begins: Nov 6, 2015
Date: Thu, Oct 29th, 2015
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Pacific Crest Trail Map
In 2013, I completed a Nobo hike of the PCT, walking all the way from Mexico to Canada. That year, I, and many of the other hikers, had an incredible year - perfect weather, impeccable trails, great water, and amazing friends; a truly once in a lifetime experience. It was the best five months of my life, and I knew there wasn't going to ever be a way to beat that trail. I'd found my unicorn.
Earlier this year, while section hiking the CDT, I ran into several friends that I hiked the PCT with, and we reminisced about how perfect it had been (granted, we were struggling through the Great Divide Basin of Wyoming at the time, so our recollection was perhaps swayed by the abject desolation of the moment). We each shared the same opinion; 2013 had been such a perfect year that we were all scared to return for another attempt at that trail - we all loved it with such consuming passion and didn't want to taint our memories of that perfect summer. Other trails awaited us.
And then, Jamie called...
She's decided to hike a couple sections in the desert this November and invited me to come along. It was actually a really tough decision. I'd already decided in my mind to let the PCT go to the back burner while I explored elsewhere, but in the end, I booked my one way plane ticket to San Diego. I decided to go home again.
In a week, I'll be stepping back on that sacred soil at the Mexican border and walking north with one of my best friends. Two and a half years ago, we started our journey there together, splitting up to hike solo a few hundred miles up the trail. We'll be back out retracing our steps through the high desert of southern California.
It's amazing how time has changed things. The last time I was in this position, preparing for the trip to San Diego, I was in a near panic, so scared and uncertain of what I was doing. There were so many unknowns, so many what-ifs that threatened my dreams. Now, I'm so incredibly grateful that I took those steps back then. I'm a better, stronger, and much happier person for it.
We should all start to live before we get too old. Fear is stupid. So are regrets.
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