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[pct-l] PCT or OST?

> From: 	Jorj Laing
> In the section beginning at Windigo Pass (Jut outside of the Mt. 
> Thielsen Wilderness Area, there is the option of going to Summit Lake
> or 
> Crescent Lake. I was wondering who has taken the Oregon Skyline Trail 
> cut off and weither or not they would suggest it to the (high and Dry 
> PCT route to Cascade Summit...
I chose the PCT in this section and the views were well worth the extra
altitude.  It's maps D8 - D13 for those looking at the guide book.  I
can't comment on the other route.

In general, I think choices like this should be made on the spot.
You'll end up adjusting your plans anyway.  There are several similar
choices in Oregon.  Usually the PCT is shorter, but not always.  Usually
the PCT follows more ridges while the OST goes by more lakes.  If you're
worried about a storm, have too much snow at higher elevations, or need
water, choose the lake route.  If you've got good weather and little
snow, or want fewer mosquitoes, go for the better views.  There's plenty
of miles of lakes and trees in Oregon.

Mark the alternates on your maps so you'll notice them.  When you get
there, you'll know which way you want to go.

The exceptions to this are where an alternate affects your resupply,
like Crater Lake.  Volume 2, maps C9-C12 show the PCT avoiding the rim.
That's now marked as the PCT route for stock.  The route marked as an
alternate that goes by Mazama campground, Crater Lake Post Office, Park
Headquarters, Rim Village, etc. is now marked as official PCT, but for
hikers only.  Depending on the exact route you choose, you'll be walking
some roads.  As the guide book says, if you've never seen Crater Lake,
don't miss it.  (I've seen it 3 times now and I'd go again in an

Another exception most people plan on is the Eagle Creek trail in
section G.  (Vol. 2, G5 - G7)  Almost everyone takes the Eagle Creek
alternate.  You should too!  It's one of the highlights of the trip.

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