PCT 2013

Longing for the open road
Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail - 2013


A training hike in the Wasatch Mountains above my home in Salt Lake City
In 2010, while still living in St. George, Utah, and operating both  my online store and retail store, called Kimball Jones, Expedition Outfitters, I began to long for another adventure. It had been 10 years since my return from the solo ocean row across the Atlantic Ocean, and I wanted to get out again and do something. A patron in the store mentioned the Great Wall of China, which sounded exotic and doable, so I began to do serious research on the project. From the blogs of others, and there were less than a handful who had attempted the journey, I learned that the trek, from western China to Beijing in the east was 2500 miles and would take 6-9 months to complete the journey. Best starting time would be in March and end in October or November, during winter. Timing, Visa, money and logistics were the primary drawbacks, but for someone determined to go, certainly not insurmountable. 

About this time, my wife Jodie was accepted into a doctorate program at the University of Utah, which necessitated a move to Salt Lake City, and put the kibosh on any further planning for a China trip.

But I wanted to do something. Long story short, In 2011, I began planning for the Pacific Crest Trail. By December of that year, I had 26 resupply boxes neatly stacked in my basement, ready for an April 2012 departure. 

In January 2012, a ten foot fall from a ladder, onto the cement driveway, smashing my left elbow, put an end to any hopes of hitting the PCT that year. I would have to wait a year.

In April 2013, I flew into San Diego, then by bus and train, I made my way to the little border town of Campo and started the trail. My starting date was April 23rd and I crossed into Canada on September 25, just two days before a massive winter storm effectively closed the trail for the 2013 hiking season.

I did not keep a daily journal, but once I was home and the journey was still fresh in my mind, I sat at my computer for eight months and wrote the story of my time on the trail, plus other commentary.

I divided the story into sections, corresponding to how the trail has been designated: California Section A; California Section B, etc. Each section is to long to write about as one post, so I have divided each section into parts. I was on the trail for 156 days, but there are 212 post. In order to keep the posts in sequence, it was necessary to assign a starting date of March 1, 2013, although my actual starting date was April 23, 2013.

California Section A:Campo to Warner Springs
Part 1 - Theodore Roosevelt
Part 2 - On to Campo
Part 3 - The Border Fence
Part 4 - Border Patrol
Part 5 - Trying to Help Others
Part 6 - Meltdown
Part 7 - Warner Springs


California Section B: Warner Springs to San Gorgonio Pass
Part 8 - Preparation is Everything
Part 9 - Trail Angels
Part 10 - Don't Fall Off the Mountain

California Section C: San Gorgonio Pass to Interstate 15 Near Cajon Pass

California Section D: Interstate 15 near Cajon Pass to Agua Dulce

California Section E: Auga dulce to Highway 58 Near Mojave

California Section F: Hwy 58 to Hwy 178 at Walker Pass

California Section G: Highway 178 to Mount Whitney

California Section H: Mount Whitney to Tuolumne Meadows

California Section I: Tuolumne Meadows to Sonora Pass

California Section J: Sonora Pass to Echo Lake Resort

California Section K: Echo Lake Resort to Interstate 80

California Section L: Interstate 80 to Hwy 49

California Section M: Highway 49 to Highway 70

California Section N: Highway 70 to Burney Falls

California Section O: Burney Falls to Castle Crags

California Section P: Castle Crags to Etna Summit

California Section Q: Etna Summit to Seiad Valley

California Section R: Seiad Valley to Interstate 5 in Oregon

Oregon Section B: Interstate 5 - Highway 140

Oregon Section C: Highway 140 to Highway 138

Oregon Section D: Highway 138 - to Highway 58/Willamette Pass

Oregon Section E: Hwy 58 to Hwy 242 near McKenzie Pass

Oregon Section F: McKenzie Pass to Hwy 35 at Barlow Pass

Oregon Section G: Hwy 35 to Cascade Locks, Oregon

Washington Section H: B of G to Hwy 12 Near White Pass

Washington Section I: Hwy 12 to Interstate 90 at Snoqualmie Pass

Washington Section J: Interstate 90 to Hwy 2 at Stevens Pass

Washington Section K: Hwy 2 at Stevens Pass to Hwy 20 at Rainy Pass

Washington Section L: Hwy 20 at Rainy Pass to Manning Park

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