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Begins: Apr 17, 2013
Date: Mon, Feb 24th, 2014
Trip Distance: 719.0
Entry Visits: 2,354
Journal Visits: 45,572
Guestbook Views: 1,781
Guestbook Entrys: 54
Wrap up and gear review for 2013
Well, that's it for my 2013 PCT hiking season. I hiked 719 of the approximately 2660 total PCT trail miles, much less that my original intention, but 1/4 of the trail is a good start. I still have the desire to complete the entire trail, if my body will cooperate.
Here's a quick synopsis for my 2013 season. I hiked California Sections A-D (Campo to Agua Dulce), part of Section E north of Agua Dulce, part of Section G north of Kennedy Meadows, most of Section M (Sierra City to Belden) and all of Section N (Belden to Burney Falls). Sections M and N were all done as day hikes throughout the late summer and in to November. I was unable to complete the thru hike due to stress injuries, emotional meltdown and exhaustion. Perhaps I could just call it old age and excessive pain.
Quick gear review:
Rainbow Tarptent-loved it. Easy set up and held up to wind if anchored well. Used it about half the time, otherwise cowgirl camped without tent.
Quilt, JacksrBetter High Sierra Sniveler. It's a keeper as well. Super warm when snugged up, but can be opened like a regular quilt for warmer nights.
Water treatment: started with a SteriPen, but could not tell if it was working properly or not. Indicator lights didn't work as expected or were hard to see in bright sunlight. Just didn't trust it. Switched to the Sawyer Squeeze and loved it. Will continue using that system.
Pad: my ThermaRest Prolite was marginally comfortable. Would have loved a thicker pad, but was not willing to carry more weight. No problems with leaks.
Jetboil stove: fabulous and fast. I am going to experiment with going stoveless this next season, but whenever I carry a stove, this will be the one.
Clothes: everything I took performed well. Especially loved the down pants and jacket for cold mornings and evenings.
Shoes: Brooks Cascadia Trail Runners! Finally found my perfect shoe. Used both women's and men's, 3 pair over the whole season. Men's are a bit wider, which is good for me, but they are hard to find in my size.
Socks: Injinji toe socks. No blisters or other foot issues as long as I was wearing these socks. They are pricey and don't last as long as I'd like, but worth it for me. I had the best luck with the midweight Run version in size small that fit snuggly and were a little thicker so the toes didn't blow out as quickly. Used probably 10 pair over the season, some of which were the lighter ones that didn't last more than about 10 days.
iPhone 5, Anker Charger, Spot Messenger- All good. The Spot Messenger does have it's limitations. It seems to need a fairly good southern sky view to work. Don't have a bad accident on a steep, north facing slope! If you are using it to keep friends and family informed of your progress, they need to know that there may be times when it doesn't work. I usually set it off at the end of the day when I stopped to camp. Maybe it would be good to set it off anytime in the day when I have a good, open south view of the sky.
iPhone Apps-PCTHYOH, Guthook, Halfmile. I used these all the time for information, route finding. Great apps. Also used the Halfmile paper maps and pages from the Yogi Trail Tips and Town Guide.
Postholer journal: This was a bit of a learning curve for me, but I eventually was quite comfortable with it. I continue to have issues with posting photos. I was never able to successfully post more than one photo per entry. I haven't really tried to resolve the issue, so just post one photo. I'll use Postholer again, mainly because I don't want to take the time to figure out something else. Initially resistant to having a public journal, I came to enjoy doing it. I'm very happy to have this record of my time on the trail this year.
That's all folks. Shortly, I will be setting up a new journal here for the 2014 season. When it is up and running, you can access it from this same link. This journal will still be available as an archived journal for 2013. My first PCT hike for 2014 is scheduled to start March 10 southbound from Kennedy Meadows. I'll be cleaning up miles I skipped in Southern California in 2013. If all goes well, I'll continue further north as soon as the snow clears.
Thanks for following along and stay tuned.
My 2013 Hike On The PCT
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