Some thoughts before departure...

  • I am still not a vet, doctor, lawyer, dog trainer, cia agent, fbi agent or a navy seal so...walk
  • I am doing this for the challenge of course, and I hope to gain a confidence that comes with this type of endeavor. But also I hope to gain some new knowledge about the world and the truths that reside in it.
  • Am I walking to "find myself"? Or just to take a walk. You decide...and you'll probably be right.
  • I'm not in the best shape of my life, but I do have a lot of new great gear so....
  • After living with my parents the last 2 years, it makes perfect sense to walk 2650 miles - alone.
  • Yes there will be bears, cougars, rattlesnakes and scorpions both imagined and real along the way. I'm definitely more worried about those imagined.
  • Am I scared? Not as of yet, more of just a constantly increasing anticipation. But check back with me on the 3rd night in the desert.
  • I tried to keep my pack fairly light, but I definitely would not call it ultralight. Somehow when I added up all my ultralight gear and put it in my ultralight pack, I ended up with just slightly heavy.
  • My biggest concern for this trip is that I get too hungry somewhere along the way, my brain goes awol as it usually does when I get hungry and subsequently you never hear from me again...I'll try to eat frequently.
  • I am not Christopher McCandless. This is not Into the Wild.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Looking to the future

Day 86, Mile 1423.6

Today was nothing short of boring and nothing taller than monotonous. Walked from 8 to 5:20ish and covered some pretty good mileage. More powder dirt, lava rocks, and hotness. The goal was to get to Burney Falls State Park before the store closed so i could pick up my re-supply box; mission accomplished. I got my package from the store along with an ice cold Gatorade and made my way to the hike/bike campsites. I was surprised to find no other hikers here. I had both sites to myself so i spread out and made dinner. Actually before that i opened my box to find out what constituted 11lbs worth of food for 4 days. My Mother was nice enough to send me extra food that i could eat right away so i had a feast of sorts. Dinner consisted of 1 apple, 2 clementines, instant mash potatoes with jerky for the first half of the pot, and cheetos for the second. While i ate i looked at what is coming up next. According to my schedule it is 9 days to Etna from here by way of Castella. Etna to Seiad Valley is 3 days. So in about 2 weeks i am going to be crossing the Oregon border. The only bothersome part about the next 2 weeks is that according to the maps those first 9 days are spent going pretty much due west, even southwest at times. Also the first 4 days out of here the trail is, "crawling with poison oak" and "in the past has been poorly maintained to the point of resulting closures". Super. All i know is if i get poison oak walking due south-west, i am going to be pissed. But i probably won't, so i probably won't. Definitely looking forward to Etna and the turn northward again that follows. Also Seiad Valley has a world famous pancake eating challenge that while i will not participate in, i hear the pancakes are very good and come with the best blackberry shake on the trail. That sentence was horrible, i think i should sleep now. Thought of the day; Happy Birthday Grandmother!!. Song of the day; Miss Mary Mack mack, all dressed in black black, with silver buttons buttons all down her back know the rest about how she was broke, and she wanted to see the patriotic elephants jump an apparently very tall fence etc. Craving of the day; have a cold drink at a swim up bar, and Banana Lumpia (Jarell you lucky bastard).

JWC on the PCT


Mom & Dad said...

Hi Jess,

Glad you liked the "extra" food we put in your box-- Heavy emphasis on the "WE". I'm happy that you always give me credit, but I must tell you it's definitely a joint effort. I may be the one to ship it off, but it's both Dad and I that pack your boxes. If you can picture this, we sit in your room with all the re-supply food around us and count out bars(twice!) and measure out cupfuls of gorp, and again Dad with his superior packing skills gets it all in the box and then we count it all out again! I am so paranoid of making a mistake. And the thought of you going hungry out there because we mis-counted, keeps me awake at night!
Love you very much, yo momma xoxo

ps i bet Esther can identify with your song of the day, since she took you and your "daycare friends" to see the lady that sang that on stage at the Wadsworth Theatre at UCLA

Sandra said...

Jefferson and I both cried at the post left by your mom and pop. Now that we have Shelby, we can imagine what it would be like. Just like your dad said to me, it's like having your heart walk around outside your body. Well, looks like your hearts, David and Gail, have walked over 1400 miles of the PCT. This post is truly wonderful to me. It has given me a peek into your family life and made me so grateful to know you all. Thanks again Jesse for sharing your adventure with us. What an incredible little gift it is.

ark said...

Jesse...The message from your Mom and Dad made me cry as well. What
wonderful parentos you have! It
is so amazing how much we really need one another. We forget that...think we can make it all on our own. It just doesn't happen...unless, of course, we like being alone and lonely and
struggling all by ourselves. When
McCandless finally figured out that
relationships were the most important of all God's gifts, he made his fatal mistake and didn't get to live it out. You, my friend, get to understand it completely and live it out. You are blessed and loved.....Andrea