What Am I Doing??

“Go take a step outside and see what’s shaking in the real world…”   John Butler Trio, Good Excuse

(c) Big Bear Hostel

Three years ago, I decided that I was going to hike all 2650 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail.

In 10 days, I’ll be taking my first step from the trailhead at Campo, California.

Right now, I’m kinda freaking out.

Getting Ready

I’ve been planning for this trip, directly and indirectly, for  a couple years now, so you’d think I’d be relaxed and ready to go.  In 2015, I took a mountaineering class

Mazama BCEP buddies – some awesome people.

through the Mazamas in Portland, Oregon (which I highly recommend).  A year ago, I let work know of my plans and that I wouldn’t be returning after I was done.  In August, I sold my house and most of my belongings.  In the meantime, I’ve busied myself with obsessive internet research about the trail, training hikes and gym sessions, and told nearly everyone I know (and quite a few strangers) of my upcoming trek.  I can’t NOT do it now.  But I have a bit of an anxious personality and I’ll probably keep freaking out until I put that first foot on the trail.  And maybe for a few days after that.

Gearing Up

I’ve also spent the last couple years learning about all of the amazing gear out there, from ultralight packs to quilts to hiking skirts to water filtration systems and

My assistant gear tester

more.  I’ve counted ounces and waited for sales.  I’ve tested boots and trail runners.  I’ve nerded out for hours with like-minded friends regarding the benefits of trail crampons versus microspikes.  I’ve come up with a gear list and, fingers crossed, it will get me to Canada!

Getting Fit

I have to admit that I have not done nearly the amount of training that I planned to do by this time.  A few hikes

An evil, evil machine.

and backpacking trips, and some time at the gym hating the stair master are all I’ve been able to manage.  Well, that and eating enough pizza and baked goods to ensure that I have enough ‘trail weight’ to lose.

Heading Out

So now, I’m getting to the end of the millionth day in a row that I’ve spent annoying my boyfriend by complaining about what a ball of anxiety I am (his cheerleader speech has gone from “You’re so ready, babe, you’ve totally got this!” to ‘It’s f&*%in’ walking, babe.  You’ve been doing that for a while, right?!”) and I just have to throw everything in my pack and hope for the best.  On Monday, my mom and I will leave Washington State for Campo, California, and I hope that everyone reading this will join me on my adventure to see how it turns out!

Happy trails!

13 Replies to “What Am I Doing??”

  1. Wrapping you in lots of protection, strength in self and endurance for your trip. Looking forward to following your journey and hearing your trail stories! Stay safe and have the most epic time!

  2. It’s more than just “f&*%in’ walking,’ but I am sure you already know this. You inspire me to set some awesome goals and follow-thru! Can’t wait to live vicariously through you!!

    1. The bf laughed when he saw that I posted that…he was teasing, of course. 🙂 I love hearing people’s stories of adventures that they have gone on or are inspired to do, so make sure to keep me posted on yours!

  3. Super excited for you and can’t wait to hear all about it. Stay safe and enjoy every minute of it. You will be in my thoughts and I am sending you the most positive vibes I can put in to the universe for you!

  4. Samantha and I are pulling for you. Look forward to possibly hiking part of the trail with you in Washington. Makes a great excuse to go to Stehekin!

  5. We are watching and cheering you on. This will be quite the accomplishment and an even bigger adventure. There will be times when it’s beautiful and spiritual and times where you just put one foot in front of the other. In the end the memories both good and bad will stay in your heart forever. I can wait to read about your adventure as you progress. While it’s fresh while it’s real and not just a dream of the past. Good for you!!!!!

  6. Jen, thank you for putting us on your list!!
    We are anxious to be on this trip with you , you are going to do just fine and will enjoy every bit of it.
    Love and hugs.
    Jo and Mike

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