Just before 9:30 this morning, after 123 days and 25 minutes of nonstop walking, came the moment I have been anticipating so long: The Canadian border, and the northern end of the Pacific Crest Trail – I made it!!!!!!!!
It took just under four calendar months (May 19 to Sep 18) to hike 2,663 miles from Mexico to Canada this summer, averaging 21.6 miles/day (everything included). From the SoCal desert through the snowy high Sierra, dusty NorCal wilderness, buggy Oregon, and lush Washington, it’s been an incredible journey.
A big THANK YOU to everyone who gave encouragement through comments and emails – they have meant a lot to me! I can’t express how much the support helped, especially through difficult sections.
I am happy to be done; northern Washington was physically and mentally intense. Last night it rained intermittently while I tossed and turned, unable to sleep, and my gear was soaked this morning. My dad met me at the border monument, snapped a few photos, and shepherded me to the Manning Park Lodge where we’re spending the night before driving home tomorrow. It is surreal to return to civilization after so long in the woods.
I will be working at a migratory songbird banding station on Metinic Island, off the coast of Maine, from late September (next week!) to late October; and on a Wedge-billed Woodcreeper tracking project at Tiputini Biodiversity Station, in eastern Ecuador, from January to April, so stay tuned for more adventures.
Meanwhile, I will be doing preliminary research for a possible book about the 2011 PCT season. If you hiked this summer, watch out – I may be calling you soon…
Sorry for the lag in recent updates; I had no cell service for the last eight days. I’ll post an overall summary when I am home and settled. For now, a giant dinner awaits – success is sweet!