On April 11th, 2020, I will begin hiking the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon, and Washington. This ongoing series is an attempt to document the entire journey from beginning to end.
I am walking 2,650 miles to End Polio with Rotary International. Support my journey!
I Bought a Tent!
Webpage after webpage, article after article, video after video, review after review is what my life had become in search of some shelter. For every kind of tent, there were a hundred opinions. Keep it light seemed to be the only consensus. Everything else seemed to be up in the air or a matter of personal preference. So, I stashed away some money, narrowed down my choices and decided on the REI Camp Dome 2. Now, I am sure someone will stumble across this post and say that I have made some grave error, but for me my little home is perfect. It is easy to assemble, light, and has plenty of room; everything I wanted.
My Relationship to Nature
I don’t know when my love affair with nature began. I grew up around hunters, but it never appealed to me much. As kids, we would go camping, but it was always from the comfort of a camper and never anytime in the backcountry. Growing up in the flatlands of Oklahoma, hiking seemed like something people in Maine, Colorado, or Washington state got to do. Yet, in 2011, I moved to Seattle, bought a day-pack, and started hiking. Once I was on the trail, I was hooked. I started planning trips every month. My goal was beauty, quiet, photos, and putting miles under my feet. Now, I found myself wanting to tackle something as daunting as the Pacific Crest Trail. I plan and prepare for launch day not for the challenge, but in hopes of an unforgettable experience and to continue the relationship; one that began out of nowhere.
Feeling Generous? Here is my Amazon PCT Wishlist…
The Joy of Walking
This is about more than walking from point A to B. This is about more than Canada. This is about walking away from it all for a while. This is about walking to experience something new and refreshing. This is about walking with the support of my own two feet. This is a journey of self-reliance and will. Before me, are tests of the mind, body, and soul. Taken together, these are tests I am rarely called upon to attempt from the comfort of my air-conditioned apartment or seated in my office chair. I have read many people discuss overcoming the monotony of waking, hiking, eating, and sleeping. I, for one, can’t wait for this challenge, because I am so over the monotony of waking, working, eating, socializing, sleeping. The joy of walking will set me free.
The Joy of What You Can Carry
My apartment is an amalgamation of thousands of individual items that I think I need. Many of these items no longer bring me joy and are held onto because I am afraid to part ways with them. In a year’s time, these items will be placed in boxes, depart Los Angeles, head toward Seattle, sit in a storage shed and await my return. On my back, will be everything I need. Water to drink. Food to eat. A place to sleep. Items to survive the adventure. A few items to document my journey. When I look at the grand scheme of my life, I am beginning to think I don’t need much more than that.
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I Bought a Sleeping Bag!
Do you remember… Webpage after webpage, article after article, video after video, review after review? That sentiment can also be applied to find a sleeping bag. Who knew such simple things could be so challenging? Years ago, before backpacking in the Smoky Mountains, I walked into a Target, pulled a sleeping bag off the shelf, and walked out. I couldn’t have been in there for more than ten minutes. Yet, when it comes to something I am going to spend 6 solid months sleeping in and considering the low temperatures of the desert and Sierras, hours of research must be done. In the end, I went with the REI Trail Pod 15 Degrees F. Together, with the tent and the rest of my sleep system, I am ready for overnight hikes all in service of my ultimate goal.
Be good to each other,
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