40 truly compelling reasons to hike the PCT

By Kimberlie Dame.

  1. Hear silence.
  2. Finally hear what the non-stop thoughts in your head have been saying to you about yourself and others your whole life.
  3. Have something new and exciting for Facebook updates.
  4. Get crazy fit.
  5. Wear socks with sandals without appearing geeky.
  6. Learn how to get lost.
  7. Become very adept at knowing exactly what time it is based on the sun’s position in the sky and what the bugs are doing.
  8. Learn how to help other people.
  9. Forget what time it is.
  10. Watch your patience with discomfort grow.
  11. Finally understand what an empty mind feels like.
  12. Quit caring what you look like.
  13. Feel bad-ass.
  14. Become an excellent map-reader.
  15. Finally “get” that “one step at a time” mantra you’ve heard others spout all your life.
  16. Behold trees that are hundreds of years old.
  17. See beauty you couldn’t possibly describe.
  18. Figure out that your skin is waterproof.
  19. Debt collectors can’t reach you by phone.
  20. Have time to think about what the hell you’re doing with your life.
  21. Have the opportunity to forget about what the hell you’re doing with your life.
  22. Watch people gather around water sources like animals do.
  23. Remember that you’re an animal.
  24. Have non-stop haiku material.
  25. TRULY test gear.
  26. Learn 100 uses for a bandana.
  27. Make your kids proud of you.
  28. Prove the endurance and stick-to-itiveness on your resume.
  29. Truly feel like you’ve done something for yourself.
  30. Learn how strong you can be.
  31. Be amazed at what the human body can endure.
  32. Put your feet in a cool stream after miles of walking.
  33. Give your parents another opportunity to compare you to some strange relative in the way past the whole family still talks about.
  34. Get family members to join you for hikes for quality bonding time.
  35. Be “in the world and not of the world.”
  36. Begin to see a forest as your home and not feel like you’re an outsider exploring it.
  37. See and maybe even grow some of your own super impressive blisters.
  38. Learn how to NOT take pictures when having an experience.
  39. Earn every meal.
  40. But MOSTLY, have experiences that you will never forget!

Happy Trails!

Kimberlie Dame is a long-distance walker and writer who lives in Portland, Oregon. She has walked the full length of the Arizona Trail along with many routes in Scotland. She completed a thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail in 2013. You can read about her adventures in her blog: www.thenewnomads.com. This compelling list has been adapted and republished based on a piece Kimberlie posted on www.PCTTrailsideReader.com.

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