I’ve had many car trips with Map Girl where on our way to a fun-filled adventure a specific album would start to play. That album is a fantastic folk-filled reverie that rejoices and shouts praise for Oregon in ways I’ve never been able to fully relate to. A few million miles of walking later and I think I finally get it.
Greetings from a very magical Oregon!
- I finally passed the California border*
- miles into the Oregon border a trail angel left two huge coolers filled with the tastiest Shasta sodas around!
- I’m staying at a swanky lodge that is super hiker friendly although they suckered me in with their PCThiker room rate. They also allowed camping, but OMG no Ashland hitch right now AND I get a personal hot tub in the room! Of course, they were offering risotto on the vegetarian dinner menu**. #neverrisotto
- the fire at the Oregon-California border has closed the trail down for 16ish miles.
More details of trail stuff:
The trail is closed as it gets close-ish to a fire. Usually when this happens the PCTA provides guidance on detour routes around the closure. They have not provided any guidance, which is bothering the purists out there.
(Definition) purist: a PCT thru-hiker that thinks a continuous foot path is a necessary part of the trail so they can trace every step from Canada to Mexico***.
The fire is mostly contained, and pretty far from the trail, so there is expectation it may open soon. There is no guarantee this will happen, so one can wait forever. The purist route forward would probably be to road walk from Callhan’s lodge into Ashland, and then roadwalk along highway 66 to get back to the trail after the fire closure (28ish miles of road walking). Because the PCTA has not recommended this as an alternative, the trumors (trail rumors) are that this is not safe.
I’m not a purists. I’ve done far too much road walking in my life to tolerate it. I’m going to hangout in Ashland for a while, obtain some new shoes as my feet are breaking (yes, Tom… I’m going to get Altras), and eat some food before hitchhiking up to the Green Springs Inn trail connection point where the closure stops.
As I’ll be around and cellularly connected for the next day, I’ll be easy to contact!
With love and anticipation for more fire closures,
Footnotes (you’re not reading Infinite Jest):
* If you’re an asshole Californian, you would say that I left California after Lassen and entered the State of Jefferson.
** Fortunately they had 2 other vegetarian options alongside the 20 non-vegetarian entrees.
*** I think this is fair bullshit, as the PCT is mostly defined by the collective experience of attempting to get to Canada not by continuous footsteps between Mexico and Canada. If you want that, the Pacific Google Trail says it’s only 19 days from Campo to Manning Park.