Wednesday, February 11, 2009


My name is Rick DeLong. At the time of this writing (2009) I am a web-designer, writer, translator, adventurer, and a few other things. I like to write about my adventures so that others can learn from them, and also to give more thought to them myself. Maybe other hikers who are planning to do this long journey this year will be able to benefit from the decision making process I'll describe here, as well as offer useful suggestions and feedback.

I am planning to hike the Pacific Crest Trail, or "PCT," from its southern terminus at the Mexican border to the border of Canada. That's roughly 2650 miles, and I expect to spend between 4 and 5 months doing it. I plan to start on April 24, 2009. I have no strict time frame for finishing, but would like to be done by the end of September at the latest. I conceived of the hike just a week ago, though I had entertained thoughts of doing it for nearly a year. 

Here is a simple map of the PCT with an elevation profile by Jonathan Ley. This will give you a good idea of the PCT in one glance. 

I am a fairly experienced ultralight backpacker. I run the first Russian-language site on ultralight backpacking, Legkohod.comLast summer I hiked over a month along Colorado's Continental Divide Trail, during Christmas break I hiked 9 days in the Peruvian Andes, and I've done another 60 days or so of backpacking with lightweight equipment since I got into "UL backpacking" the summer of 2007. If there are readers out there considering a PCT hike and concerned about lightening their load, you may learn something from my gear planning. Feel free to discuss gear choices, as I am familiar with most lightweight backpacking equipment. My strategies for the PCT will be based on my past experience (especially Colorado) and research on the PCT, which I have not hiked before (but I've hiked a lot in Southern California and the Sierra Nevada, years ago).

UPDATE 2016:

Wow, 7 years have passed! But I still think a lot about the PCT and spend a lot of time hiking. In fact, I now live in the Republic of Georgia in the Caucasus Mountains. I'm currently finishing up a book on how to learn foreign languages as quickly and painlessly as possibly without teachers and courses. I'm just starting to promote my project, so I decided to stick that link here :)

No comments:

Post a Comment