[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[pct-l] Re: feet and water

I agree with Andyman in that sore feet and water management are things that
can't necessarily be "trained" for before a thru-hike.  I found that at the
beginning of my thru-hike, my feet got sore after about mile 17-18.  This
didn't have anything to do with how in-shape I was or how strong my ankles
were.  It was simply a by-product of my feet not being used to walking 18
miles a day every single day.  Unless a hiker is Mr. Fitness and hikes 20
miles a day every single day before the trip, their feet are not going to be
used to that kind of mileage.  Hiking 15-20 miles on weekends is not the same.
Don't worry, eventually this will go away as your feet get used to putting in
the miles.

Water management is also something I don't think you can "train" for before
the thru-hike.  Unless you live in the arid Southwest (S. California, Arizona,
New Mexico, Texas), your body will not be used to a (very) dry climate and
little water.  Unless you reguarly go 20 miles between water sources, you
won't be prepared for long waterless stretches.  I'm from Washington, so I
went from 60 degrees and damp to 80+ degrees and dry.  There is no way I could
have gotten my body used to those conditions before I left for Campo.  The
best method is to carry enough water at the beginning and slowly get your body
adjusted to that sort of climate.  Eventually you will use less water than you
did at the beginning.  Much of this will be from learning how to hike properly
in the desert areas, not because your body needs less water.  Hydration is so
critical in Southern California.  It should be (and I'm sure will be) one of
your main focuses while hiking in that area.  I have some desert hiking tips
on the ALDHA-West web site.

Since thru-hikers can't really do anything about sore feet and water
management before the trip, I suggest they focus their attention on getting in
good shape, strengthening their ankles, and achieving a lightweight hiking
system.  This will help both sore feet (wearing running shoes and carrying a
light pack means less weight and less stress on the feet) and water management
(get to that next water source quicker by being in good shape and carrying a
light pack).

Jeremy Rice
* From the Pacific Crest Trail Email List | For info http://www.hack.net/lists *