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

Re: [pct-l] Downsides of a distance hike

On July 31 Brian Robinson wrote - Downsides of a Distance Hike

You seemed to cover a lot of the reasons, probably most.  I'd say it the
attitude.  To me completing the hike in one trip has been the least of my
reasons.  I've had the opportunity to complete the AT in one continuous hike
but chose to enjoy the hike more than being a statistic.

In '83 I started the PCT and broke my foot about a 100 miles into the trip.
Rather than quit I keep on walking.  A lot of painfull and low milage days
for the next three-five  weeks until I could walk properly again.  I had the
attitude that regardless of how far I got I was going to continue.  The
trail will be there the next time I get a chance.  A year and a half in
planning and I wasn't about to give up.  Of course the next time I got a
chance to hike was in '88 and my ankles quit working and I couldn't get them
loose enough again to hike -  I insisted on continuing but my hiking partner
wisely got me off of the trail convincing me I may never walk again if I
continued (and he probably was right).  So after several painfull weeks he
had to drag me off the trail.  In my heart I knew he was right.

So my choice of all is attitude.  Someday I'm going to finish the PCT
(unless death claims me before I realize that dream).  I don't care that it
may take 1 or 100 years.  The trail will still be there.

I have no problem with taking a "blue blaze side trail"  If it is something
I want to see.  I'll probably never pass this way again, there are too many
places to see! - So I'm not a Purist.  Crossing a barren wastland when a
side trail will take you by Crater Lake for example.  I'll take Crater Lake
anytime, this is probably my last time I'll ever see this wonderland.
Hiking 50 miles between water supplies while an alternate trail will provide
water ever 15 miles or so - I'll take the alternate.  This is my trip (not
yours or others who may dictate other terms for themselves) so I'll do it my
way.  It's neither right or wrong but it's my way.

I crossed the Sierra in a bountiful supply of snow.  I had not the required
equipment but due to the broken foot it was late in the year.  We still had
up to 15' of snow covering several passes.  My partner fortunally had the
expertise and equipement to get both of us safely across.  Living in the
South a heavy snow consisted of 3" per year (only if we were lucky enough to
get that much).  Again attitude got me through those problems. (Probably
stupitidy - but I'll stick with the attitude).

When I took off on the Appalachian Trail in '78 my father said youll get
blisters and quit.  I got blisters but I never quit (again attitude).  For
personal reasons I never had a prayer, except in '81, of doing the entire
trail in one year.  But I kept plodding and completed the trail in '81.
That year I did over 2000 miles but not all on the AT, had I concentrated my
efforts I could have been a "Thru Hiker"  I liked my way better.

Now don't get me wrong - there is nothing wrong with being a Thru Hiker or a
Purist if that be your dream, but then again there is nothing wrong with
doing the hike any way you desire.  My dream just differs from yours.

At any rate my answer will be your attitude, a lot of luck, but mostly your
will to accomplish what your heart desires.

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