Why do I quit my job and leave the comforts of everyday life in order to spend half a year hiking 4280 km (2660 miles) on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT)? The short answer is that it was just a dream that I have.
The elaborate answer is that I’ve always been fond of the outdoors and spent a lot of time running around in the mountains of Norway ever since I was a kid. Be it skiing, hiking, hunting or fishing. I’ve carried this interest with me as an adult.
I first learned about the PCT when preparing for hiking the John Muir Trail in July 2011. I spent a lot of time reading about long-distance hiking and gear selection, and also read quite a few trail journals. The JMT and the PCT share the trail through most of the High Sierras, so when I hiked south-bound on the JMT I would meet the PCT hikers coming north. Dedicated and devoted people from all walks of life, from 19 year old college students to retirees in their 60’s, with a common destination – Canada. These people had been hiking for 1500 km, more than 900 miles, already, and I was hiking a “mere” 357 km (222 miles) on the JMT. I was mighty impressed by these people.
Hiking the JMT was an amazing experience for me, and as soon as the JMT was completed I started dreaming about someday hiking the PCT. The dream has stuck with me ever since. The more I have been thinking about it the more I have realized that this is something that I really want to do.
Now, hiking for 4-6 months is hard to combine with an ordinary lifestyle, and for most people may require some sacrifice. Job and apartment may have to go, and family and friends may have to be put on hold for a while. I have given this a lot of thought, but have never actually been in doubt. I’m going to hike the PCT! I’m in good health, young (relatively :-)), free and single. So when would there ever be a better time to hike the PCT? I’ve decided to stop making excuses, and to follow my dream instead. There’s always time to sit around the house or spend time at the office later.
So why do I hike the Pacific Crest Trail? Well… why not?
Destination: Canada. Goal: The journey itself.