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Because I don’t like typing on that tiny little keyboard on my iPhone, I bought this. It seems frivolous, but I’m hoping it will help my interest in sharing. If you followed me on the PCT you know my blogging was terrible. My hand written journals are a sad mess of abreviations. So this might help. It’s smaller than a keyboard, BUT it has keys I like; delete, forward and back arrows… The inability to backspace on the iPhone irritates the heck out of me. Cost – $14. So what am I adding to my pack weight? 4.8 ounces. Bonuses though, – it’s RED!!! ( I misplace things in my tent quite easily, so my goal is to have everything a different color… and red is rad)…and according to the ad on Amazon, I can type in a sand storm, wash it any time, it’s wireless (which means I’ll loose some battery life on the phone while using it) … i can roll it up in a tube I use for my cords… it’s really ideal (I say that now….)
So here’s hoping it’ll inspire me to type on the trail more than I did last year….
Hey there. the clock is slowly ticking down to June 15, and by slowly I mean FAR TOO SLOW. I’m ready to do this, but I must wait for snow to melt in Glacier Nat’l Park. I put out a few feelers on the Facebook page for 2013 CDT hikers and it looks like there will be a few people starting their thru-hike just before or after me, so I won’t be terribly alone on the trail, although there are two different starting points, but they quickly merge to one.
The last few weeks have been possitive for the hike. Today I crossed the $2000 mark, and Someone donated $1000 to my fundraising site ! (AMAZING !!!) just $1000 to go to hit my official goal. After a concerning night, a few weeks back, in my tent with far too much condensation that left my new down bag wet at the head and foot, My friend Michael purchased a new Big Agnes tent for me, in fact it’s a tent i struggled with buying last year when ants ate holes in my tent, I wanted to upgrade to a double wall free standing, but decided to stick with the comfort of the tent I had, at half the price. I’m so very excited to use it! More on that tent and why later…
With what I raised and what I’ve saved I’m on good track to keep my hike moving, I just can’t have any unexpected expenses. Since I have my 6 pair of Montrail shoes already purchased (remember, I bought $115 shoes for $50 through a friends and family discount) so they need to work out well.
I was contacted by a wonderful man who hiked the AT in 1975. He provides trail magic and assistance at the Dinsmore’s Hiker Haven, who happen to be the last Train Angels on the PCT. They’re working together to get me Sqincher electrolite drink mixes on the CDT. A few people have offered to send me food supplies, but those are all packed and ready to send. Most of the food is dreary and boring though, so I’ve sent out my resupply lists and Rory (my resupply guy) will let everyone know where I’ll be and when (if I can’t) so little surprises can pop up when I least expect it. My goal will be to get in and out of towns w/little spending and temptation, so if I find an extra box of goodies at the Post Office, I’ll be able to fend off cravings at the supermarket…. or so I tell myself.
I left my job in industrial paint/prep Friday, the guys I worked with seem to want me back, even though I only worked there two months. I work very hard so it’s nice it’s recognized. Dan, who runs the paint shop, even drew me a map to follow. It starts and ends at work, and although I tell him I won’t be back until the end of Nov at the earliest, he wants me back for the busy season…. I like the little lake and mountain’s he included on the map. Funny good times.
For the first time ever, I’ve been folowing other’s blogs as they hike North on the CDT (NoBo = north bound). Wired is one to watch (click here to find her blog). She hiked the PCT in 2011 and is EXCELLENT at blogging and explaining. Her photos are amazing and I can’t wait to visit the spots I’ve seen her post about. I was able to offer up my first trail magic for her as well, by buying a piece of pie for her at the Pie-O-Neer in Pie Town, NM… the staff was happy to oblige my request of looking out for her arrival … Also, I’m followingHighlife (Click here to find his blog), who seems to have service everywhere on the CDT so he’s posting a lot on Facebook…
Next week I head back to see my family for a week. Other than the short two days in San Diego in April of 2012 when they saw me off on the PCT, I haven’t spent time with them in a year and a half. It will be good to see them, tell them all about the PCT, all about the CDT plans, and then head back to Portland to start climbing the mountains of the Columbia River Gorge, training for the mountains of Glacier Nat’l Park.
I’m going to try to weigh my gear and get a full gear list together. I didn’t end up doing this on the PCT because I had so much extra silly stuff that I didn’t want to know, or more so, I didn’t want YOU to know how heavy my pack was… I bought a gram scale to be technical, I’ll try to do that before I head out.
Thanks again for all of the support, and for regular updates, you’re better off following my Facebook page… facebook.com/hiking26.
Yeah. It’s true. I just started a job last week. What to do next is driving me crazy.
I over think everything, so that’s really all this is…. Me Over Thinking! But Publicly, so maybe I’ll work it out as I type.
Post PCT I moved to the Portland area and began the search for a job to get me through until the CDT. I have known all along that the CDT may not happen in 2013 because of funds. My job search was vast, and often way off track from what I used to do (industrial painting) because the work schedule can be rough and often include Saturdays. I began REALLY missing my old job up near Spokane… So much so that I kept thinking of moving back just so I could get back to work. I’ve learned to live very minimal – for the first time in my entire life! – but I still have bills to pay and my other half is so graciously letting me live rent free so I can funnel all funds into the CDT.
Two weeks ago I received a phone call from a company about a job I applied for and really thought might be a good fit. The problem is, I sent my resume to them just before I committed to the CDT by purchasing $1000 in food (If you follow me on Facebook, you’ll know the commitment all started with finding a ridiculously good deal on Oreos/Nutter Butters/Fig Newton Snack Packs at a gas station for 14 cents each). I went to the interview and after hearing about the benefits they offer – MOST important to me – One Week of vacation offered after only Six Months and it accrues that way every six months. Starting all over in a blue collar job market I never expected to find such a deal with vacation time…. VERY IMPORTANT to have vacation when you’re a backpacker ! (and when you have family that lives more than 2000 miles away.)
Well they offered me the job. I started last week. I figured two things – 1) I may not like the job or they might not like me so I could quit June 1 and go hiking. 2) I could beg forgiveness from the people who have donated to fund my CDT 2012 adventure and push it off until 2014. I LIKE to work. I like the stability it brings to my life because I don’t do well when left to manage my own time. I have a great track record for working, and I NEEDED a job for many reasons beyond finances. But I never expected to be back at work just before the hike. The company has now purchased very expensive Red Wing Boots, Coveralls with my name on it will be here next week, they’re bugging me about turning in Insurance paperwork (that’s right, insurance ALREADY!!!) …. I’m giving them my all and showing them what I’ve got and they’re investing time and money in training/employing me, and here I am on the fence about what to do. I WANT TO WORK HERE !!! But I can’t NOT hike the CDT this year. What happens if something goes wrong this year and I can never long distance hike again?
What happens if…. the answers are endless and unknown.
I just wish I didn’t like the job so much. The longer I’m there the more I feel I’m deceiving them, and that is NOT what I want… That’s not who I am.
So why not stay, hike another year, send off my already packaged up food stash to hikers on the CDT and PCT …. It’s money lost but …. NO! I need to go hiking. I NEED this more than I need a job right now.
So, here’s my ideal situation. In a few weeks I go in and tell them I want to work there. I tell them I feel I’m an asset (I work hard and if there’s one thing I know about myself, it’s that I have a great work ethic), and that I really like their company and would like to grow with them… But explain that there’s something I gotta do first. At this point, they could fire me, but I’d love it if they kept me on until June 1, then I could go see my parents in Missouri (I haven’t seen them since they sent me off on the PCT a year ago Sat April 6 – then I return to start a slow hike on the CDT since I will have had little training (that’s OK, I didn’t train much for the PCT either)…. then hope they’ll have an opening to hire me when I return in November.
I want this job.
I want to hike more….
If something goes wrong – I’ll never regret not having a job the way I’ll regret not hiking the CDT.
SO…. that’s where I’m at…. what a mess.
It’s March 26th! What better day to tell you about the March photo on your hiking26.com calendar !
This is Dorothy Lake – June 21st, 2012 – Pacific Crest Trail Mile 998. One of the many memorable lakes along the PCT. Located in California near the PCT exit from Yosemite. Although I was VERY anxious to keep moving on, for our 1000 PCT mile mark laid just ahead, I couldn’t help but take advantage of this gorgeous view.
I’m standing on a sandy beach just off the trail. I had been hiking with ‘Memphis’ this day, King Knuttella, Nightengale, and Collector were just behind (soon to catch up at the 1000 mile marker). I wasn’t crazy about the angle of the camera vs. where I stood on the beach, but the wind was so much that I had to pick the most stable bush to secure the camera to. Then, once I set up the camera, I took off my shirt and was bombarded by mosquitoes. They hide behind you on a windy day, you can feel them slam into you…. They were pretty awful. So short and sweet, photo taken, bug bitten and on my way to celebrate 1000 miles of hiking….
So now you know…
Oh…. And the gown – One of my favorites, a donation from Tracie Javanovic Pinet – Thanks Tracie !!!
I have never been so tight with my money in all my life. Saving every penny for the CDT has been an interesting experience for me. While prepping for the PCT I would stop and buy sodas ever time I ran into town, lunch was a daily affair, mainly because, at least the last four months prior to hiking I was living in a barn and the kitchen was across the yard in the house. I was so incredibly scatter-brained with donation collections, gown collections/fittings/alterations and getting ready for six months of living from my pack that I didn’t realize (probably as I never have) just how much money is wasted through all of these little purchases. I also lived in a town of 2000, so bargain shopping was useless.
I finally bought every last bit of food I’ll be mailing to the CDT. 686,688 calories for $1062.33. That’s 165 Days or 23 weeks of food. I’m figuring shipping cost of $25 per food drop to the trail. Flat rate boxes aren’t large enough for all the food I have. This time around I see everything I want as the equivalent of a trail expense. Dinner would cost a food ship, that soda would buy an entire box of Cheez-its if they’re on sale. I wear the same few outfits as clothing, even from Good-will would be a purchase and therefore equated to less money for the trail…. I’m rather proud of myself, yet thankful for all that are helping me out. I’m well taken care of at home, my expenses are pretty much non-existent as I prep. I try not to think of the mass quantities of money I wasted prior and during the PCT hike, but my stress level was through the barn roof and I wasn’t able to prepare the way I can now. Although this trail will be dramatically different, I’m reassured by my experience with all that is normally daunting to a new thru-hiker. I’m can’t say I won’t miss the great food variety my family provided me last year, but this year, at least, I know it’s paid for.
As you can see, I started a fund raiser account through GoFundMe, which was a difficult decision. I begged for so long on the PCT, and i just wanted to cover the cost of this hike on my own, but finding temporary work in a new city post PCT was more difficult than I expected. I could have waited another year to hike, but the CDT is all I can think about. I few people asked for an easy way to donate and this seems to be the way. GoFundMe is easy although they keep a percentage, thus the reason I shot high with $3000 – The funds raised through that site will cover costs of camping when I have to hitch 20+ miles into a town, need to shower and do laundry, buy cheese and tortillas, but can’t get a hitch back to the trail before dark. Running into town is a very stressful event for me. I love small towns and get distracted by all there is to see, but on an incredibly tight budget, even supplementing my calorie intake by eating a hearty meal, will have to go by the wayside. Proper socks are insanely expensive at $15/pair or more, so fund raising pays for these things too.
The fact of the matter is, I feel guilty asking for money. I should have taken a year off, but I just can’t mentally do it. So once again, I’m at your mercy, and try to provide as much entertainment as possible for you to vicariously live through my hikes. I thank you all so very much for contributing in every way possible…. from a message of encouragement, to a pat on the back, to a financial contribution… it all matters to me, and I’m incredibly thankful….
If you’re interested in helping out with my CDT hike, you can donate here, or contact me directly at email@example.com
Thanks so much !!!
Ron – Trail name ‘Train’