PCT: Day 199: Going solo

Day: 199

Direction: Southbound

Trail location: 1329.4

Cumulative miles hiked: 2036

Miles hiked today: 7.06

Elevation: 6808

High/low temp: 93/57/16

Spinning on the turntable: Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats

It was again difficult to leave Noelle behind to continue hiking solo. I thought that really cranking down the daily distance would be the golden ticket for her success.

Once Noelle finalized her decision to not hike I moved rapidly to sort food and supplies. I’d guess I was gone within an hour. To me, the longer I stayed the higher probability that I’d quit too.

It was an easy hitch back to the trail. I resumed hiking in the exact spot I stopped hiking two years ago….with a big climb!

Time to climb

The good news was the easy hitch, the bad news is the climb and the heat. It’s really warm…

At lunch I found a nice shady spot near a small creek and hung out for about three hours avoiding the heat. I mainly dozed. I made lunch and ate a meal before I resumed hiking.

The Northbound thru-hikers (NBTH), most, but not all, go ripping past me like they’re gliding on skis. “Great trail! This is amazing! This is my favorite part of the trail!” Uh huh. So happy for you. I’m trying to not vomit with my uphill walk, thank you very much!

Tonight I need to deal with the bear bag again. I’ve hung the bear bag so many times. Yet, last time the results weren’t all that good. Hopefully I can hang it without an issue. Someone told me today that there’s a mamma bear and cub in this area. Swell.


Easy things can become complicated when carrying a backpack. I need to climb over this log. My backpack leaves me slightly off balance, so I struggle to scramble over. There’s no grace or fluidity of motion involved. Lacking a better term, my body and joints just feel stiff and not so flexible.

A well marked gate is appreciated

Our current plan is to meet up in Quincy in about a week. Noelle will go collect our truck camper (Cupcake) and drive back. I have my solo backpacking gear in the camper, so I just need to make it for a week and then I can reduce weight by leaving nonessential gear/larger tent/stove in the camper.

I found a few of Noelle’s items in the tent tonight. I think she left them in there when we scrambled to pack up quickly amongst the bears. Instead of giving me comfort they just depress me.


  1. Kimball Kinnison

    Those NB hiker scum! Have they no pity?

    • mcgarveysan

      They are surely in a hurry!


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