Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Day 110- A Small Rant

Aug 20, 2016
I-5(1715.2) to Tentsite(1738.7) 23.5
Total up/down: +4,006/-3,860 feet 

I had originally planned on getting out of town as early as possible, but since I was up late last night I decided to sleep in a little. I want to start Oregon well rested. I woke up at eight o'clock and finished packing up. I thought about going out for breakfast again, but I had second thoughts. The last few times I had breakfast before hiking out of town ended badly. I ate way too much and was really sluggish and had problems making my miles. I ate my usual breakfast of a poptart and drank my carnation essentials mix. Before heading out of town I had to go to the store and buy some bleach. I tried to get some from house keeping at the motel, but they didn't have any. I had to buy a large bottle from the convenience store. All I needed was a few ounces so I gave the rest of the bottle to the convenience store clerk. 

I was in the wrong part of town to try hitching back to the trail so I took the bus up to the interstate. I got as close as I could to the on ramp and tried to hitch from there. I wasn't having much luck so I walked closer to a gas station right next to the on ramp. Within minutes somebody leaving the gas station stopped. They were going past the exit I needed to get dropped off at and didn't mind stopping there. It was a quick drive and I was thankful that they stopped for me. They had never even heard of the pct. 

I was back on trail by 10:30. It was going to be another hot day. Ashland is in the middle of a heat wave and the weather forecast called for a high of 106 degrees. I was hoping that Oregon would have more water than Northern California, but so far that doesn't seem to be true. The one positive thing is that so far I'm walking through the forest more, which means more shade. It didn't feel too terribly hot out. 
Here we go again

I was hoping to hike thirty miles today, but with the late start that did not seem likely. When I stopped for my first break I looked to see what my options were. If I could make it twenty-five miles I could camp at a lake with potable water, picnic tables, and a privy. I decided that was my goal. After a few hours I had to rethink my plan. I wasn't moving as quickly as I needed to. The heat and lack of water sources was slowing me down. 
Still lots of exposed areas

I stopped for a second break around three o'clock. There was a nice piped spring with a bit of shade close by. I mixed up some Gatorade and tried to come up with a backup plan in case I couldn't make it to the lake. While I was trying to decide what to do another group of hikers joined me. It is common practice to see what each others plans are. I explained where I was trying to make it to, but I told them I wasn't sure I could get to the lake before dark. They said their plan was the same, but they were taking the shortcut. I was confused. "What shortcut?" I asked. They were going to walk a dirt road that would take them to the lake in just six miles. I still had almost twelve trail miles to hike to make it there. I explained that I am a purist so that wouldn't work for me. One of the guys said he was a purist as well. He tried telling me that as long as you connect continuous footsteps to Canada you are a purist. I told him he was wrong. You can't walk dirt roads just because it is easier and shorter. Let's just say that we agreed to disagree and I did not leave the conversation with a new friend. I'm all for hiking your own hike(HYOH), but to me his way is cheating. I didn't come out here to walk roads or to take the easy way out. In fact I get pretty worked up when I see people cutting miles this way. Sometimes there are alternate trails that have better views than the pct. I don't blame people for taking those. I get worked up when people cut the trail because it is easier or shorter. To me that is not what thruhiking is about. I have seen a lot of people taking the easy way out lately and it gets me upset. When they finish the trail they will tell people that they thruhiked the pct. What they will conveniently leave out is that they skipped miles. I can honestly say that I have hiked all 1,738.7 miles to date. Ok, rant over!

I was excited to listen to the new music I downloaded last night. I'm trying out some new genres of music I haven't heard before. I got some folk music and bluegrass. So far I am enjoying it. I really like this group called The Passengers. The small bit I've heard from the Lumineers is really good too. 

 I wish I had gone closer to this lake. It looked really inviting

So far I'm really liking my new shoes. The Altra Lone Peak 3.0's are a big improvement from the 2.5's. All of the things I wish were different about the 2.5's have been fixed. It seems like Altra really listened to their customers. The mesh uppers are a tighter weave that doesn't let in as much dirt and sand. They also beefed up the sides of the mesh by adding a rubber like material. I think this change will make the shoe more durable. The heel is a tiny bit more narrow which works out well for me. My foot isn't moving around as much any more. It is way too early to say for sure, but I think my feet will be happier in this new version. 

I didn't quite make it to the lake for camp. I ran out of daylight. The days are definitely getting shorter. I found a nice flat spot to stealth camp next to the lake outlet. I always try to camp close to a water source. It makes life easier and my pack lighter. As I was getting ready to cook dinner, by headlamp because it was rapidly getting dark out, the group of shortcut takers came by. They asked if they could camp next to me. I told them I didn't mind. Apparently they had taken a wrong turn on their shortcut and walked a few miles in the wrong direction. 
Nasty stagnant pond that I skipped just before camp
Lake outlet

Tomorrow I hope to get back on track. I hope to average 28 miles per day throughout Oregon. I will go slightly slower around Crater Lake because I don't want to rush around there. I want to really enjoy it. 

"Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."
– Steve Jobs


  1. Glad you're staying pure....not everyone can. Their bad! While not 28 miles for the day, 23.5 ain't too shabby. Keep kicking, Walks Far Woman.

    Double G

  2. I totally get the rant...saying you are through hiking the PCT is WAY different than walking from Mexico to Canada. Walking the high-ways and dirt roads for 6 months is kinda cool...but it aint a PCT thru hike.
    We Yoda followers know you are a purist and that your trail, your words, and your miles are true...

  3. Just remember, people have their own way of doing things. Not all are purest like you. You still made a lot of miles coming out of town. HYOH and you will be fine. LY

  4. To each their own hike. Every hiker seems to have their unique pet peeve. Mine are when folks don't pack EVERYTHING out that they pack in and soap bathing/ cleaning off insect repellant in water sources. Glad you are staying true to you!! I'm so excited to read and see the Oregon PCT Yoda version!!

  5. I had to when the shortcut takers got lost and turned around. Serves em right!

  6. I appreciate reading your blog and admire your fortitude and dedication to both the hike and your writing. Despite following and rooting for you on both the AT and PCT, I have noticed you have a bit of a superiority complex when it comes to those who are not hiking purists. I just want to say that while being a purist and hiking every step of the PCT works for you, your tone and rant imply that it somehow makes both you and your hike "better" than non-purists. You mention being all for HYOH, but really, your words say otherwise, not just in this post, but in a few other previous (AT and PCT) posts where you've disparaged those who aren't doing the hike the way you think is the best way of doing it (namely, not taking shortcuts). If someone says they hiked the PCT and didn't take every step on the trail, this doesn't discredit you or bolster them...you each would have done it in your own way. The trail is not there for arrogant boasting, or proving one of us is better than the other.

    In no way do I mean to be argumentative, I just want to remind you that everyone is hiking their own hike; we're all equals deserving respect, both the fast and the slow, the finishers and those who get off the trail before the end. When you finish, you will be a hiker deserving praise and someone who saw all the trail, but in the end you'll no "better" than someone who got off the trail at Kennedy Meadows. Remember what Yoda said about anger and aggression.

    I couldn't help myself from adding my two cents, but in all honestly I'm rooting for you and wish you the best on the trail.

  7. i recommend not caring/spending any mental energy on what anybody else does. So free-ing! ;) (that said, i did snicker when the short cutters had apparently made a wrong turn).

    To the person above, having hiked with yoda and (gasp) slackpacked a few days of my hike(no judginess perceived, btw) i think yoda's issue might be that if both sets of people claim to hike a certain trail and some did it by taking shortcuts or yellow blazing, the experiences are not equivalent, even when they sound equivalent. But, everybody's experience is different anyway. For instance, last year we were, overall, very lucky with the weather. Does that mean it diminishes our hikes as opposed to the hikes during te soggy season of 2003? I dont think so, and moreover, i dont care what anybody else thinks about it. Hence my advice not to care. :)

  8. Many racing experts consider Mario Andretti to be the most successful and versatile racing driver of all-time. During his career, Andretti won the Indianapolis 500, Daytona 500, Formula One World Championship and the Pike’s Peak International Hill Climb. He is one of only two drivers in history to win races in Formula One, IndyCar, World Sportscar Championship, and NASCAR.

    During an interview with SUCCESS magazine, Mario Andretti was asked for his number one tip for success in race car driving. He said, “Don’t look at the wall. Your car goes where your eyes go.

    I would say Yoda is the same. I feel Yoda ascribes to:

    Step 1) HYOH and set goals/perameters for succes, down to the mile.

    Step 2) write about it, for two thru hikes and almost 365 days. Even though people will encourage you. Discourage you. Thank you. Belabor you. Criticize you.

    Step 3) Accept criticism willingly just as you accept your place in this world on a rock made of stardust spinning around in an infinite galaxy and finally

    Step 4) piss off anonymous.

    Mission accomplished Yoda!

  9. You crack me up, Ant'ny. And besides that, Mario Andretti has a great winery ! Yoda, keep on doing your thing. It is the only way you can be satisfied with your hike.

  10. LOL Ant'ny!! You rock!
    I second #4!
    Go Yoda!! You are doing great!
    Kathy in NH