Saturday, September 19, 2009

Plans for the Pacific Crest Trail: 2010


I've just starting making plans to attempt a hike of the Pacific Crest Trail next summer. The PCT is a 2,650 mile trail that runs from the border with Mexico to the Canadian border, roughly following the crest of the Sierra Nevada and the Cascade Mountains. The hike will likely begin in late April or very early May, and with luck I would finish in September. If you click on the map you can see a high resolution shot of the route. Many of those who have hiked the PCT believe it is one of the most enjoyable of the major scenic trails. I hope that is my experience as well. I look forward to another summer on the trail!

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bruce,

I'm glad to hear that you took my "advice" and are attempting the PCT next spring. You are a tough guy! I will follow your exploits with keen interest from the comfort
of my desktop! Thanks for your website updates and big dreams.

Steve (former TSG rzrbck)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your description of your AT thru-hike. I have a son who graduates from high school next spring. He hopes to be accepted at a college in the northeast and would like to defer a year to hike the AT.
He has no experience although he's very athletic and in good physical shape. I'd actually love for him to have this experience but, as you can imagine, am concerned about his lack of experience and being out there alone. He tells me that people aren't alone that much and from your blog it sounds like you do encounter people a lot.
Did you run across people around his age on the trail. Assuming he does research and training, is this reasonable for him to consider. thanks for any advise you can share.

Buck said...

On the Appalachian Trail you can hike alone or with other people just about as much as you want. Most young people just naturally end up spending most of their time with "trail friends." As far as safety goes I honestly think he'd be safer on the trail. Check out
this post and site.
An often unspoken reality is most people DON'T enjoy a thru-hike and drop out along the way, there's just too much rain and bugs and heat and cold and very hard work for months. But for very many it's the greatest thing they've done in their whole life. I'd suggest at least a week long backpacking trip for him to get a feel for whether he likes long distance backpacking or just the idea of long distance backpacking. If he truly wants to do it, I'd support him!

Buck said...

Oh, and it's not uncommon for people just out of high school to thru-hike. It can be an awesome learning experience and confidence builder.

Buck said...

Is that Steve S.? I want to preserve your anonymous status!

Anonymous said...

Bruce,
Yeah thats me, your adventures
sure are neat, I wish I could do more stuff like that but such is not the case. Let me know if I can
help you in some way.
Steve S.

Buck said...

Thanks Steve, I appreciate that!

Emily said...

I was searching for other 2010 thru-hikers online and I found your blog. I am planning to hike it as well. This will be my first thru-hike ever. I'm really excited. When are you planning to start? Mid April?

- Emily

Buck said...

Hi Emily,

That's great that you'll be hiking the PCT this year, and you SHOULD be excited! It's a big deal.

Currently, I plan to start a couple of days before the ADZPCTKO. Are you planning on attending? I think you are the first 2010 PCT hiker I've heard from directly. If you want to talk thru-hiking, feel free to email me at buck@DELTETETHISbucktrack.com. Of course, you just need to remove the DELETETHIS part. Have fun planning!

Josh said...

Approximately how much money did it cost to thru hike the at?

Buck said...

Hi Josh, I never tallied it up so I don't really know. I think $4,000 nowadays is a pretty good average.

Whiteblaze is a great site for AT information. Check on this link: http://whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?t=52735

Good luck!

Aubrey said...

One of my favorite places to hike is the Cascades! Good luck to you!

I've always dreamed of thru-hiking the AT! However, I have children at home now. My husband is deploying in March to afganistan for a year, I've been seriously thinking of hiking just doing sections of the AT while he's gone. My children have hiked some steep hikes in the cascades and other places, I am confident they will be great sidekicks, my question would be what you thought would be a feasible section to hike starting out and a time frame with children ages 7-12. I'm not committed to a job, I homeschool, and financially free to plan and prepare for such a hike.

I read your link on your AT hike...very informative! I've also read Scraping Heaven...which is an awesome read about a family of four who hiked the PCT, AT and Continental Divide.

I may be asking too much, but I would appreciate any information you could give me.

Thank you!

Aubrey
aubrey.renee76@yahoo.com

Buck said...

Hi Aubrey, Thanks for the good wishes for the PCT.

I'd likely choose a section of the AT in Virginia if I were hiking with kids. And I'd likely choose a section in the Overmountain Shelter area. Planning for short days with lots of unstructured time for the kids would be key, I think. A night at the Overmountain shelter is something they'd likely never forget. You should buy a guidebook like the Appalachian Pages to help plan. I'd look at doing maybe 5 miles a day. The forum at www.whiteblaze.net is an excellent place for further advice from the experts. Have fun planning, and enjoy the hike!

Buck

Rick Beaty said...

PLEASE make a DVD about you pct journey!

Buck said...

Hi Rick,

Thanks for the suggestion but largely due to possible government film permitting issues I likely won't. Someday I'll probably make another DVD but I don't think it will be about this trip. Thanks again though!

Buck

Anonymous said...

I am also planning to thru hike the PCT in 2010 and I have just relocated to Fairbanks. If you would like to talk over plans sometime let me know! wfoster78@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

Hi, Buck! I'm wondering if you're still monitoring your blog. I assume so, but one never knows. (As someone who's notoriously bad about keeping up with her own blog;) I'm a romance author best known for her NASCAR seriers of romance novels. I'd like to do a serious about smoke jumpers next. Are you available for Q&A. Failing that, do you think you're friend's book "Jumping Fire" would answer most of my questions? I'm ready to order it off of Amazon.com if you think so. And NOT used, LOL. I firmly believe in author royalties;)

To read more about me, you can visit www.pamelabritton.com

Thanks!
Pam

Buck said...

I am going to send you an email, thanks!

Buck

Bronze said...

Buck,

Awesome to see you're going to tackle the PCT next. I just finished a 500 mile swath of the trail this summer with my pack mule--a fantasy I've had for some time. Next up is canoeing down the Miss., which is how I found my way here to your blog. I've had your Mississippi canoe trip bookmarked for sometime, and now that (part) of the PCT is done I can start planning the next expedition!

There are countless PCT resources out there, as I'm sure you are aware, but please feel free to email me if you have any specific questions. Good luck buddy!

Bronze

Buck said...

Hi Bronze,

Your PCT pack mule trip must have been really fun. Congratulations on doing it! I hope you make the Mississippi trip as well.

I'll let you know if I have any PCT questions. Thanks!

Buck

Anonymous said...

Hi Bruce, It's Cuzin' Pam. So I heard about your trip obviously. Between #25 & #26 on the PCT you will be hiking just above my house. How detailed is your route? I was thinking ifyou knew when you were getting close, I could tkae the day and hike up to the PCT and meet you with some lunch or something you may be needing. Let me know.

Buck said...

Hi Pam,

That would be great to see you!

It's very difficult to say where I'll be at a given time, but obviously once I'm within a couple hundred miles or a week or two away I could give you a very close guess.

Tell you what, I'm going to email you. Have a good day!

Bruce

Anonymous said...

I am wondering if any one knows if the entire Pacific Crest Trail is open to mule travel. If not, what segments are restricted? Thanks, looking forward to either ultralight back packing the entire route or taking a mule.

Ray

Buck said...

I'm in the Denver Airport now on my way to start my PCT hike, so I don't have time to research, but I'd check the PCTA site and the PCT-L.

Good luck!

Buck

Sandita said...

Hey Buck! Mammoth Lake looks beautiful! It sounds like you are having an adventure of it all. Unfortunetly it looks like we won't be able to tie in with you on the trail. School starts on the 25th. The logistics seemed like trying to thread the needle in the hay stack. So sorry we won't make it. It just seemed like way too much. I really wanted it to be fun for the kids. Maybe when they are older we can find you on another adventure. peace and happy trails, Sandita

Anonymous said...

Buck,

Dow here. Glad to hear the trip is going well. Gorgeous photos! I had a great trip to AK for 18 days in June, IC of 2 fires at Manley. I'll have to tell you a couple funny stories from that trip someday. One, about a complete loser Type 2 Logs Chief and the other about a very funny engine kid. You probably heard the Bros broke the '88 fire jump record and still going. AK is the only action anywhere.

You probably have it all figured, but if you need any help when you get up this way, give me a shout at dow1224@wildblue.net or 509 952 2313. I've got easy access to Satus, White, Chinook, Snoqualmie, and Stevens Passes (in order from S to N). The only glitches would be if I'm on a fire assignment or on a high lakes fishing trip with Julian in late Sept.

Later, Dow

dougquinn said...

The PCT is crazy! I've only done legs of it, but it would be so cool to eventually to the whole thing. I lost a pair of Yaktrax last time I was near Olympia so watch out for them.