Never would I have EVER considered participating in a thru hike in my life. I really wanted to go to Zion this year, it did not pan out which was okay because we went to Yosemite instead and that was phenomenal. But I kept hearing the thru hike thrown out in the website with Zion information. No idea what that was, and I did not really care.
So, fast forward to when my dad and I go to Yosemite instead of Zion. I was enthralled at the beautiful sights and quite amazed that Yosemite maintained it’s aura of wonder despite it being highly populated as we arrived on a Saturday. I walk through Yosemite village and through the gift shops and the little museum and I keep hearing about the John Muir Trail.
Having spent some time with T talking about trails and whatnot, I recalled him telling me something about a hike that went from the Mexican border to the Canadian border. And with my newly found experience at Havasupai, I immediately was telling my dad about how the John Muir Trail spans the length of America from top to bottom. He was amazed and thought it was a really cool adventure.
I began to invision myself on this trip. From border to border, carrying nothing but my stuff on my back and sleeping under the stars. My imagination just kept running. I was already following this PCT hiker guy that T had met in Mammoth, and so my imagination was supported by his wonderful pictures on the trail. I began dreaming, and even worse, I began considering it.
Long story short…In that same trip, I discovered that the John Muir Trail (JMT) actually was 220 miles only and that the Northern Terminus was in fact, in Yosemite. D’oh! Immediately, I thought, if I was already considering the long-ass trail through the country, I can DEFINITELY plan for the JMT, which should take about three weeks. It was only then that I remembered that T had told me about the JMT and that the other one was called the Pacific Crest Trail. Also known as the PCT.
So I settled into a mindset of planning for the JMT. Three weeks off of work and in the wilderness? That would be crazy to be honest, but definitely doable. If I planned everything correctly, I could actually still go to Havasupai for week, and then also do the Trans Catalina Trail, the TCT. I can still remember how intent I was on completely the TCT when I came back from Havasupai in August, and if you can see how my ambition has quickly ecalated from just doing the TCT the following year, but now included a repeated of the Indian Reservation and then a thru hike of the Sierras. I amuse myself.
Still, I could not stop thinking about the PCT.
Little did I know that hiking would be a challenge I wanted to face on so forcibly in my wee little soul. I began the 52 hike challenge, and I have joined the community group of Women Who Hike, because of LOVE the hiking culture. I spend a lot of time on my public instagram account stalking various hikers and I spend shameful amounts of time on REI’s website.
Now that my life is seriously taking a 180 degree turn, I have put forth some serious considerations about my hiking for the following year. Slowly, however, I could not shake the daunting task of the 2,650 mile thru hike from Mexico to Canada. A four to six MONTH solo trip, through the desert, the Sierras, Oregon, and Washington, of miles and miles of walking. Can you imagine!? I can!
The pleasant fear filled my soul the other day when I realized, I actually have the TIME to do this hike next year. If all is planned properly, it is definitely plausible.
Has this insurmountable challenge been accepted? Not quite. But I have decided to at least document it. Worst case scenario, I go to JMT, TCT and Havasupai next year. Best case scenario, I will be blogging my adventures through my phone somewhere in the beautiful backcountry. Either way it will be a learning experience to be remembered.