PCT: Day 205: That’s a mighty big hill

Day: 205

Direction: Southbound

Trail location: 1367.8

Cumulative miles hiked: 2096

Miles hiked today: 10.43

Elevation: 6644

High/low temp/humidity : 82/59/10

Spinning on the turntable: The Cranberries: No need to argue

I spent yesterday preparing for the hike today.

The motel in Belden is suffering from a serious lack of employees. The day I arrived the bartender was telling me that normally they have 30 employees and this year they only have 9.

While I was waiting for my lunch order two more employees quit. I ended up waiting for two hours while soaking in the AC and looking at Guthook. In the end, the kitchen made one order yesterday, and then closed due to lack of staff. Luckily the one order was mine!

Instead of a dinner at the bar, which I was looking forward to, I found a can of stew in the shop. It worked just fine.

Upon waking this morning at 2:30, I ate a second can of stew and hit the trail at 3AM.

Up and up and up

4300’, 6 miles and a 11 to 14 degree grade. This is what my backpacking nightmares looks like!

The reduced temperature was a big help. It was around 60 degrees when I started hiking. As I was hiking I recalled something that I found very beneficial on past hill climbs/tough terrain. I ask myself what I’m thankful for at that exact moment in time. It’s not a big life question, it’s simply a question rooted in the present moment in time.

I was thankful for the breeze that I could feel on my face each time the switchback turned in such a direction that the gentle breeze cooled my brow.

This is one of the things I like so much about backpacking. It’s SO rooted in this exact moment in time.

(Oh, just a quick interruption to our normally scheduled post. This week we’ve starting adding a weekly PCT video summary to our Patreon page. The only way you’ll get to chow down on this raw/not so edited material/minimalist footage is by clicking on this link and joining the Cupcakes. What kind of content can we actually generate with an I-Phone anyway? This will be content that’s exclusive for our Patreon members and we won’t be releasing it on YouTube.)

I reached my first potential campsite around 11AM. I dropped my backpack against a rock, plopped down, and took a short nap.

Looking around after my nap I realized that all three tent sites were too small for the tent, so I pressed on for another mile or so.

I found a decent spot close to a water source and I called it a day. I set up the tent and slept for about a hour. I spent the afternoon reading a book. It seemed wrong (but oh so right!) to stop hiking so early in the day!

Other hikers began filtering in around 5PM. I chatted with them a little bit, but mostly kept to myself. One fellow was planning to run to Belden tonight so that he could catch a thru-hiker beer bash. Ah, youth. I read my book and went to sleep by 8PM.


  1. Heidi Halverson

    You’re so cool!

    • mcgarveysan

      That’s what I tell myself too! 😂


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