Pacific Crest Trail Thru Hike: Mexican Border to Idyllwild

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On April 17, I began my Pacific Crest Trail thru hike. Traveling north from the Mexican border, I will reach Canada sometime in early September. I’m currently in a small town called Idyllwild, about 175 miles north of Mexico.

Mornings on the PCT begin when the sun rises. After wiping the condensation off my sleeping bag, I chow down on some protein bars, force down a liter of water, and start my day. The cold desert wind is advantageous hiking weather, so 10 miles before noon has become habitual.

The afternoons are unique in the mountainous desert of Southern California. The dry heat makes it nearly impossible to hike. During the hottest hours of the day, hikers gather around water sources, sharing stories, napping, dazing off in a desert haze, or looking for shade.

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Darwin found some valuable shade for a mid day dirt nap

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Rattle snake crossing on day 8

Whether sleeping under a bridge or watching para gliders jump off a mountaintop, everyday offers new experiences on the PCT.

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