PCT section L: Paradise Lake to Sierra City

Think this might be the shortest and possibly the easiest section on the entire 2663-mile PCT. That’s based on a personal knowledge of two-thirds of the trail in California. That’s all I know, admittedly, with some reading and searching, for instance such as Jeffrey Schaffer’s venerable and helpful set of guides on Wilderness Press. Still. Turns out the sectionContinue reading “PCT section L: Paradise Lake to Sierra City”

Thinking about wildness in CA: Daniel Duane

Daniel Duane first came across my media screen last summer with a spectacular essay in the NYTimes Sunday Review — My Dark California Dream — in which he thought through some of the problems that have hit California lately, from wildfire to drought to traffic to the devastation of sea life off our shores. ButContinue reading “Thinking about wildness in CA: Daniel Duane”

The Revenant: from the bear’s POV

The Revenant, the most spectacularly cinematic contender for Best Picture in years, did not take home that particular Oscar at the Academy Awards presentation this past Sunday,  but it remains a massive world-wide hit, far bigger than “Spotlight,” won three other major awards — best director, best actor, and best cinematographer — and will almostContinue reading “The Revenant: from the bear’s POV”

The Lost Brother — Latterly strikes again

To encourage interest and subscription, Latterly magazine, an on-line journal of stories from around the world,  run by the wizardly editor Ben Wolford, released as a “single” a marvelously rich and well-written, well-edited, and well-composed story about life north of the Arctic Circle, on an island off the coast of Iceland. It’s called The LostContinue reading “The Lost Brother — Latterly strikes again”

People of the PCT: Dirt Stew and Dormouse

About eleven months ago, I ran into a couple of thru-hikers as I approached Kennedy Meadows on the PCT. I was coming off the end of a super-hot section of the Mojave with little or no water, and they were south-bound. In SoCal, mostly hiking earlier in the year, heading north I hadn’t met manyContinue reading “People of the PCT: Dirt Stew and Dormouse”

Ballet of the bats over Lake Aloha

At Lake Aloha, mile TK on the PCT, I saw a sight the likes of which I’ve never been so privileged. A ballet of bats, so to speak, dancing over the still waters of Lake Aloha, chasing I think big fat whitish moths that unaccountably flutter around the water there (or so I’ve seen). TheContinue reading “Ballet of the bats over Lake Aloha”

PCT Section I: Kerrick Canyon (mile 972-986)

Miles 972 to 986 on the PCT offer gorgeous views at the price of real effort. This was one time on the trail that yours truly, age sixty, was passed by folks, both younger and older, from twenty-somethings coming south from Truckee to family groups passing heading north, in both directions. Didn’t manage to capture portraits thisContinue reading “PCT Section I: Kerrick Canyon (mile 972-986)”

An air mattress for the trail: REI Flash pad review

The REI Flash insulated air Pad is the third air mattress for backpacking I've tried since starting on the Pacific Crest Trail a couple of years ago, and, to be truthful, the first that really worked well. Alternatives such as NeoAir, by the well-known brand Thermarest, and the Oak Street, by the great tent makersContinue reading “An air mattress for the trail: REI Flash pad review”

From Kennedy Meadows north on the PCT

It's May, and though California only recorded 5% of a normal snowpack, err, 3%, still that turns out to be plenty when climbing from the desert up the Pacific Crest Trail into the mountains, into the high Sierra around Cottonwood Pass and Horseshoe Meadows. I couldn't dawdle through this section, not while trying to keep my nephew Eli Huscher, here seen in a typical pose, in sight: 


More on this surprising section of PCT for the curious, bellow the virtual fold: