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[pct-l] Entering the US on thePCT

Since 11-Sept changed everything, no one's prior year's experience is
particularly relevant.  I did a couple of hours research last night and
discovered the following:

All persons entering the US must do so at a designated "port of entry"
- the PCT border crossing is not a designated "port of entry".
Therefore, if you enter the US via the PCT, you will be doing so
illegally.  If caught, you will be fined, have some or all of your
personal property confiscated, and, as a non-US citizen, you will be
jailed, interrogated for a few days and given the opportunity to prove
that you are not a terrorist.  Then you will be deported and probably
banned for life from entering the US (no PCT forever!).

As an example, I found a couple of instances, of US snowmobilers
briefly crossing from the US into Canada while on a day trip. Observing
their reentry to the US, the US Border patrol arrested them, they were
fined $5,000 and their snowmobiles were confiscated for not entering at
a designated "port of entry".  These were US citizens and the incidents
were before 11-Sept.

Though the chances of getting caught are low, the penalties are high,
especially for a non-US citizen.  Know this: the US Border Patrol knows
exactly what time the bus gets to Manning.  If they're not waiting at
the border, they may be waiting at the first road crossing.

My recommendation: enter the US legally and proceed to the northern
terminus from the US side of the border.  I would document everything
and save every piece of paper, bus or train ticket that would help
prove my itinerary.  If you get a ride from anyone, write down their
name, take their picture and a picture of their car's license plate so
they can be found, if necessary, to testify on your behalf.  Write down
every move, including date and time, in your journal.  At the very
least, these will make good souvenirs of your journey after you arrive
home and you can have a good laugh about those "crazy Americans".

>From the time you enter the US until you reach the northern terminus,
if you see the Border Patrol or any other law enforcement, approach
them and tell them of your plans and your intention to do everything
legally and ask for their advice on how best to accomplish this goal. 
If nothing else, they will make a good witness for you should it be

When you get to the terminus, don't take even one step across the
border.  If you do, don't take any pictures from the Canadian side or
take pictures of your companions or allow anyone to take a picture of
you on the Canadian side.  Write in your journal that you did not cross
the border.

Yes, call me paranoid. Yes, this will cost you a few extra days and
miles of hiking and probably money.  Do I think it is worth it? 

Good Luck.

--- Matti_Urlaß <matti.urlass@web.de> wrote:
> Hallo
> I'm planning a southbound hike this year.
> I come from Germany and I will arrive in Vancouver Canada and I'm
> planning to start in Manning Park...

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