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.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The air show, the bear show

Day 135, Mile 2440.4---Walked in what felt like a mini-sierras today. Actually the climbs and descents did not feel mini at all, but the views were spectacular and sharp. On the biggest climb of the day i was about 1/2 a mile from the top when i heard what sounded like an incoming fighter jet. It was, times two, they were flying so low through the valley that i was looking down on them from the mountain side. They were so close that if they had been slower i would have been able to see the color of the pilots helmet. They pulled up at the end of the valley and came within what seemed like less then 500ft above the ridge top. It was so energizing i found myself in the middle of the wilderness yelling "yeeeeeaaaah boooooyeeeeeee" and "whoooooo-hooooooo" at the top of my lungs. It was just an awesome sight and the closest i have ever been to a plane in flight let alone a fighter. They looked like Russian Migs but they could have been what i think is called the "warthog", which is a Marine plane i think. Used the adrenaline to get me to the top and lunch which i enjoyed the later part of with Landshark, Caterpillar, Moonpie and Clearwater. The group is a bit fractured but i never expected us all to stay together too much longer anyway. After lunch myself and Landshark came upon a bear eating something in the meadow. It was a blackbear but with long blonde hair over the majority of its body. It noticed us but didn't run away. It stayed long enough for a couple pictures and a video actually. Clearwater soon showed up and with the three of us standing there the bear changed its mind and took off. Oddly enough there is a statistic i heard that groups of three or more have never been the victims of a bear attack. It was Landsharks first bear sighting of the entire trail. We made it into camp next to a creek and had a campfire with dinner. When everyone returned to their tents Moonpie discovered that mice had eaten some of her breakfast food under her tarp(just a tarp no enclosed tent). In the time it has taken me to write this there have been two attempts on my pack by the resident pests. I do not know what it is about Washington but ever since i crossed the border the mice have been a problem. Hopefully i can just turn my ears off or attribute all sounds to the creek and still get a good nights sleep. Thought of the day; confidence is key. Song of the day; mamas don't let your babies grow up to be cowboys - some country singer. Craving of the day; anything and everything fresh and made from scratch.

Post Script; Moonpie just startled awake and said that a mouse just jumped on her bare shoulder, and then, "it's going to be a long night". Not for me i hope.

JWC on the PCT


Mom and Dad said...

The 'air show" sounded absolutely amazing!!! How exciting to be out there in it!
Way too many rodents for me! I would have to be locked up in a rubber room after just ONE night like that!

Love, mom xoxoxxooxoxoxox

Anonymous said...

Re: jets - that sounds like one of the coolest things you've experienced yet! I am so inspired that I am going to go to the MCAS Miramar Airshow in October! (Well, ok, really I already had my tickets but it sounds good.)

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

p.s. Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys by "some" country singer - that would be Mr. Willie Nelson to you, sir - also performed by the ever famous duo of Willie & Waylon (Jennings)! Here's another one for you:
She's a good hearted woman in love with a good timin' man
She loves him in spite of his ways she don't understand
With teardrops & laughter they pass through this world hand in hand -
A good hearted woman, lovin' a good timin' man

A long time forgotten the dreams that just fell by the way
The good life he promised
ain't what she's livin' today
But she never complains of the bad times
Or the bad things he's done, lord
She just talks about the good times they've had
And all the good times to come

She's a good hearted woman in love with a good timin' man
She loves him in spite of his ways she don't understand
With teardrops & laughter they pass through this world hand in hand -
A good hearted woman, lovin' a good timin' man...