Day 169: The Trail Ends Here

Date: September 30, 2017
Miles: 1153.8 – 1157.6

The traffic sounds that I heard this morning were a fitting reminder that reentry to civilization was imminent.  I took a little extra time to eat my last breakfast (probably my 200th packet of oatmeal) before throwing my home onto my back and stepping onto the trail.


JD and Fluff quickly hiked on out of my view, as usual, and I slowed down a bit to take the last four miles at a more contemplative pace.  I wanted to go home, but I didn’t want to be done.  Tears welled up as I got closer to the I-80 rest area.

The tears evaporated when we reached the end of the line – the rest stop on I-80 at Truckee.  It wasn’t the most glamorous of backdrops for the end of a 2,650 mile hike through some of the most beautiful country I’ve ever seen, but I didn’t care.  I had hiked my own hike and this is where it concluded.


We reveled in the moment for about an hour, then JD headed north to his endpoint in Sierra City and Fluffy and I got a ride to Truckee to do what we do best – eat.  The journey wasn’t totally over – we still had to make our way back to my car, which we did by bus to Reno and a couple hitches the rest of the way to Bishop – but inside of us, we knew we had accomplished what we came out here to do…we had become true hiker trash…WE WERE DONE.

Brothers from other mothers.


8 Replies to “Day 169: The Trail Ends Here”

  1. Congratulations! Flipping like you did might have been the best for hiking the Sierra anyway and it sounds like you got ahead of the fires in the PNW. You still hiked the miles and may have had a better time so well done!

  2. Hi JJ. Just found out about your epic and spent a good chunk of my sunday following along. I have such an amazing appreciation for what you accomplished. I have been backpacking for years and putting in so many miles over so many days on the trail boggles my mind. Going to share with my 15 yo son, who i started packing with at 9, your journey. Its inspiring to see old classmates do awesome things.

    1. Thank you, Eric! I’m really glad that you will be sharing this with your son…one of my favorite side effects of this trip is seeing it inspire others. Happy trails to you both!

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