When I finished the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) in 2012 a seed was already planted in my mind that some day I might embark on another long trail. As it turns out hiker trash is not easily cubicled, and the time has now come that I cannot postpone the call of the trail anymore. Come May 2015 and I am embarking on an adventure of not 1, but 3 long trails:
- The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDT) – 5.000 km
- The Appalachian National Scenic Trail (AT) – 3.500 km
- Te Araroa – New Zealand’s Trail – 3.000 km
My goal is to complete all three trails, 11.500 km of hiking, in 12 months. I’m quitting my job to do this, so in that respect I’m not on a tight schedule. Still, all three of the trails have a window of opportunity that is only open during the summer half of the year. The race against the seasons is most definitely on.
Continental Divide Trail
I’m focusing on one trail at the time, but the grand plan is to start off with a northbound hike of the CDT in early May. 5.000 km of hiking along the Continental Divide through New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming and Montana. I’m hoping to reach the Canadian border some 4 months later, by mid-September.
Once the CDT is completed the plan is to head over to the East Coast to do a southbound on the AT. Starting at Mount Katahdin in Maine and ending up at the southern terminus in Georgia some 3.500 km later. Hopefully I’ll make it all the way before winter catches up with me. If I’m successful this will complete my Triple Crown of Hiking. Yay!
Te Araroa Trail
The plan is then to fly to New Zealand and top it off with the Te Araroa Trail during the winter of 2015/2016, the summer in the southern hemisphere. The 3.000 km of trail crosses both the North Island and the South Island. I’ve never been to New Zealand before, so this will definitely be something new. A full year of hiking, a full year of summer.
Of course, I realize that a year is a long time and 11.500 km is a long way. Things can happen or my plans can change along the way. Still, I’m very excited once again to follow my dreams, and I’m looking forward to sharing my adventures with others. If you want to follow me on my adventures you’ve come to the right place. Stay tuned for more!