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[pct-l] Offensive Foul

I was in Lone Pine last week and saw a bunch of PCT hikers who had bailed 
onto the main drag. For the first time I could see the 
strange/frightening/offensive picture thru-hikers can make in town.

Basically, it looked like these people had shellshock -- and after seeing 
the condition of the high country, I understand why. There were packs 
emptied onto the sidewalk, a big bearded guy wearing a plaid skirt (?), etc. 
While using a sidewalk phone, I listened to another guy irate at Feathered 
Friends -- something about his sleeping bag. I know the scene, and the sight 
of thru-hikers is like the first robin of spring for me. But 
tourists/merchants/cops were not looking with approval on the whole scene, 
now you could say, "fuck it, it's a free country," but there are big PCT 
patches on those backpacks. Image for Lone Pine residents -- PCT hikers are 
freaks; let's hope they go away soon.

The funny part about it was I had just returned from climbing Mt. Russel in 
high winds and was a little shellshocked myself. I'll say it again, though 
-- after running a 50, climbing four 14-ers in 3 days, and now training for 
a 100, I hope I never do anything as scary and strenuous as hiking the high 
sierra in a snowy early season.


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