The Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail turns 40!!!

This year is the 40th anniversary of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail. (see footnote.) I’m hoping that lots of people will take leaves of absences and sabbaticals to through-hike this 2,650-mile trail. I might seem like an unlikely advocate for this path, considering that I had a rather extreme experience (running out of water dozens of times, getting lost constantly, getting giardia, etc.) However, many things have changed since I hiked it. For one thing, trail angels are leaving more water caches in the drier sections of the hike. The telecommunications boom is another factor. When I hiked the trail, cell phones were rare, unreliable and clunky. These days, people are blogging right from the trail(!), carrying GPS and maintaining at least some contact with the outside world. Finally, there are so many online resources and publications for people interested in lightpacking and orienteering. I’m hoping to hear from some people who are contemplating a PCT journey this year. Also — thanks to the many people — including former classmates — who showed up to my “postcard signing.” I appreciate your support!!!!

(footnote: purists will note that the trail has existed in various incarnations for much, much longer than 40 years; however, the PCT was designated a ‘national scenic trail’ in 1968.)

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