Friday, January 30, 2009

Just for fun I thought I would try packing my gear into the book bag I used to use in college. It was a giant LL Bean Super Deluxe book bag. When full, it sticks out about a foot from your back. I got teased a lot, but since I commuted to school on a scooter from my house in the mountains, I had to carry around rain gear and jackets and needed all that space to store them, in addition to my books. It holds something like 2200 cubic inches.

My gear fits in there with room to spare for food. Theoretically, I could go backpacking with just my book bag. I would try it except that the zipper is broken, thanks to my parrot who gnawed on it. I can zip it, but every now and then it splits open. That is not something you want to have happen when you're backpacking.

The problem with going ultralight with gear is that eventually you have honed your gear down so low that not only is it light, it's small, too.

I put all my gear back into my Osprey backpack. It all clumps down at the bottom of the pack in a big lump. There are limp and lifeless pockets everywhere. I suppose it won't hurt to have a big pack with little inside. It offends my hiker-chic sensibilities. This is silly. Fashion should not matter. Maybe I'll try my old external frame pack next.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Backpacking over Prez Day

I'm going backpacking over Prez Day weekend. I hope to god it does not rain! I really want to go.

I'm so excited to be going, I just packed my stuff. I wanted to see how much my gear weighs. I'll be hiking with a local ultralight guru and I don't want to be laughed at.

I am missing my rain pants and my bivy sack since they have not yet come in the mail. But I packed my two-person tarp and bug bivy and all the rest of my gear, minus food and water. I weighed it on the bathroom scale. It's about 14lbs. Not bad, considering that 4lbs of that is my backpack.

I have asked Tony for a Gossamer Gear pack for my birthday. They are on sale. Then my pack weight will be even lower. My Osprey pack is really nice, but now that I've gotten the quantity of stuff I down to a tiny minimum, the pack is too big.

Yesterday I made an attempt to salvage my old Jannd pack. I weighed it on the bathroom scale with all my stuff in it. Only 12lbs, but the 12lbs feel awful. The problem I had hiking the PCT was never the weight of the water. It was the poor fit of the pack. It just doesn't ride right on me. No amount of ultralight will help.

I have too many sleep systems. I have a tarp, bivy, bug bivy and tent. But I want a choice to sleep outside or inside. Part of the fun of camping is the camping part and I want to make the most of it and be able to cowboy camp if I want, bugs or no.

Big luxury in my pack: sun shower. My plan for the PCT is to spend less time in hotels. Now that I'm poor, hobo showers and stealth camping will be my new way of life. I'll test it out on Prez Day. A quick shower at the end of the day might improve warmth when I sleep, too.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

My two classes

So I'm whiling away the months until my hike can begin again by taking classes at City College. I have a database class and a Unix class.

I know only a little about databases. Just whatever I've been able to figure out when asked to do something for a job. My class is exactly what I need. At the end of the class I'll know how to design a database and understand all the issues you have consider to design a database correctly. I'll know SQL.

The teacher is a hoot. He's funny and passionate about the subject. He reminds me of Karl Halbach, my geology teacher when I first started City College in the 80s. He was so passionate about geology that you couldn't help loving the subject. I ended up majoring in it.

My other class is just an introduction to Unix. We'll learn the utilities. That's perfect. I know only what I've been shown to get a job done and only what else I've figured out on my own. I know enough to be dangerous.

It's nice to be around people all excited about computer engineering and programming again. It reminds me why I enjoyed this field. I wish I was a computer programmer.

Maybe taking these classes is a good thing. Maybe I should take more time and do it. Get a solid education in programming.

How to make the money last so I can do it?

Gear gear gear

Oh boy, I've ordered more gear. What is wrong with me?

Anyway, I ordered a bivy sack even though I think maybe I won't really need it. I will give it a try and see how I like it. It may add some warmth on colder nights and maybe I can sleep in it without my sleeping bag on hot nights. I bought an inexpensive and very lightweight one from Equinox. Only 6 ounces or so. I can carry it on crazy day hikes with Tony instead of the emergency blanket.

I also ordered rain chaps. Rain pants are always so uncomfortable. The crotch usually ends up down at my knees. Chaps will be so much better for me. Only 3 oz. and so tiny I can carry them on day hikes.

The only rain thing I do not have now is a light rain jacket. I have a rain jacket, but it is not all that light. Many people have said that my windshirt and my umbrella will be sufficient. I'm hoping so. Meanwhile I'm debating whether I should get a poncho. I've never been kept dry by a poncho in the past. Ray Jardine suggests just putting your stuff in plastic bags inside your pack and wearing a light shell and umbrella. I have used umbrellas hiking and they are just so sensible you have to wonder why everyone doesn't use them.

Next up, I need to find shoes that won't ruin my feet like the pair that drove me off the trail. Funny how feet work. Some people love the Montrail Hardrocks. I was nearly crippled by them.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Movin' on

I decided to quit one of my jobs. Everyone there is always sick. Everyone there is always unhappy. The mood swings are no fun. The bad vibes seem to draw more bad things in to the place than good. I felt lonely and outcast there, too. I decided that somehow I'll do ok without the money. Another job will come my way.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Buck Creek to Fish Creek

One big unknown in my route from Santa Barbara to the PCT involves connecting Buck Creek to Fish Creek, which leads to Atmore Meadows Rd. and eventually to the PCT. The Buck Creek to Fish Creek section is very unknown to me and seems to involve hiking a long way on roads.

Buck Creek Trail

A friend of mine is trying to create the Condor Trail, a trail spanning the length of the Los Padres National Forest following mostly existing trails. He sent me a map that matches much of my route. His map shows that the Buck Creek trail is mostly a decent trail, except for one portion which is unknown. So I've been looking for any information on the unknown portion of the Buck Creek trail out there on the Internet.

The closest I could come was a video and some slides of some hikes taken from Old Highway 99 to the Slide Mountain Fire Lookout. I've sent an email to the person who took the pictures to ask if he has gone further along the trail to Buck Creek. Hopefully he will know something about the conditions, but he may not. It looks like that area was burned in the Day Fire.

At least his pictures show me that the long roadwalk along the old Golden State Highway is along Piru Creek, so although it appears it will be scorchingly hot, at least there will be water.

Templin Highway

I searched in vain for an alternate route to avoid having to walk 7 miles down Golden State Highway and then another 8 miles or something like that along Templin Highway, but I was out of luck. I did find the Pyramid Lake RV Resort, which has a store with ice cream, but it is at the end of a long and hot road with no alternate hiking route to connect up with the PCT from it. I will have to miss a chance for food there, unless I'm desperate.

So while a long, ice creamless roadwalk is in order, at least I have read that the Templin Highway is pretty. It is blocked off somewhere after Cienga Campground, which is also blocked off to traffic. Maybe the only traffic along it will be hikers going to Cienega Campground, in which case, they are likely to give me a ride. Otherwise, I will have to expect hiking every long and arduous mile.

Fish Creek

The first site I found on hiking Fish Creek seemed to provide a really good trail guide to the area. A Google Book on Trails of the Angeles corroborated his descriptions.

The next one I found on the Fish Creek trail is about a man's adventure exploring old mines in the area. It turns out the man is now dead, having died exploring mines near Lake Castaic.

It looks like Fish Creek is a good route to return to the PCT. Eventually the trail, which is marked by ducks left by some nice Sierra Club Hikers, and thus likely to be put back every now and then, reaches a dirt road, and from there, the hiking will be relatively easy to return to the PCT.

So, it looks like my route is coming together. It will either work or it won't. If it won't, I'm going to have to find some kind of alternate, maybe involving taking a grayhound. I really want to return to the Sierras and not let them kick my butt this time, but in order to survive them, I feel I must hike a few hundred miles beforehand so that I'm in peak condition when I get there. As much as I want to skip all the desert stuff, I really can't afford to start at Kennedy Meadows. I will be too soft to start there.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Improvements from last year

I'm making some improvements over last year's gear. There were some areas where I did not do very well and I want to survive them better. There were other things that annoyed me and I want to improve the experience.
  1. AquaMira: I ordered some AquaMira solution to use instead of a water filter. It is not clear whether it works on giardia or not. They seem to indicate that it does not by steering you to their carbon filter unit. I'm going to try the solution anyway. This will help remove the annoyance of having to take time to pump water. When water was plentiful, the time spent pumping was annoying. This will speed things up and lighten my pack significantly.

    I also bought some lightweight mesh from the hardware store to use as a prefilter so I can filter out the floaties in my water, too. Cut a little square and apply with elastic over the bottle before filling.
  2. Stabilicers: I brought instep crampons last time. They are not terribly heavy, but their added weight was mostly useless because they were such a pain to put on. And I could not walk in them over rocks so I ended up taking them off just before I really needed them, which led me to slide down the ice on Mather Pass. I plan to bring along an extra shoelace to tie them on more securely and add a little more insurance against them slipping off my feet. Otherwise, the reviews I have read seem to indicate that they work and grip well without wearing out quickly. Since I won't need to wear them for miles and miles, they ought to work fine. Only about 10.5 ounces, too.

    Last year, I went home after Mather Pass. The Sierra passes had beaten me. I was so bad at walking on snow and climbing passes that I skipped over 100 miles of the Sierra. This time I intend to go the distance. Commiting to the trail, as my Life Purpose book suggests. The Stabilicers ought to help me walk on snow without falling.
  3. 1 liter Platypus bottles: I don't know if this will be an improvement or not, but having water containers that shrink as they empty ought to improve the experience. Everyday consumer plastic bottles are really quite sufficient, but I'll give them a try and see if it's an improvement.
  4. A16 Bug Bivy: One of my biggest annoyances were the mosquitos. They prevented me from taking naps during the day, from eating dinner outside my tent and from sleeping under the stars. This will not replace my tent, but be an additional item to carry that I hope will improve the experience of the trip. My only concern is that it only provides coverage and room for your upper body. It was pretty darn hot in the evening by July. Perhaps I can fashion a modification to provide lower body coverage.
  5. Equinox tarp: I already owned the tarp. I have checked around with people out there and they assure me that the generous 8x10 foot size is plenty to stay dry without a bivy sack (to guard against rain splatter) in the kind of rain I'm likely to see in Oregon and therabouts. With the bug bivy I will be safe from bugs as well.

    I intend to use my The One tent most of the time because I enjoy the spacious relief from mosquitos. I can get inside, take off clothes, lay down and relax knowing nobody is going to suck my blood.

    I am going to try out the tarp during a camping trip in February and I think I'll carry it with me before I reach the Sierra mosquito country just so I have adequate experience with it by the time I really need it. Then I'll switch to my The One, carrying the Bug Bivy for naps, dinner and times I want to sleep tentless. Then I'll switch to the tarp in Oregon. That's the plan for now, anyway.
  6. Climate-controlled Camelback hose: This isn't really to improve my experience on the PCT. It's to improve things at home. Ariel, our cockatoo, is fasciated by my Camelback hose and keeps biting holes in it. Hopefully one that is covered will keep her from doing that.
I've been looking for a way to skip Jawbone Canyon. It's not looking like there is an easy way to do it. I might have to tough it out and do it a second time. It was the worst part of the trail, in my opinion, with the exception of Bird Spring Pass. That part of it was actually really pretty.

My Life Purpose book says to stand up for yourself and commit. So I'm committing to the PCT. No half-way trip to Oregon. Nope. It's all the way to Canada this time.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Choosing to live

Here is a quote from the book I am reading:
We have to show up in life, and be on our own side. We have to be willing to say, "This is who I am," and then look for the support that follows.

In order to live your purpose, you must be able to say, "This is how I choose to live." Living purposefully comes from giving your word—to yourself—and keeping it. If you truly want to know your life's work, you will find your answer in that to which you commit your spirit. Only after you have kept your promises to yourself can you be effective in a larger sphere.
It also goes on to say:
Take a stand. You cannot be everything you might be if you are always keeping your options open.
I think I have an issue of keeping my options always open. I am always afraid to commit to anything. I feel like life is too short and there's so much to try out. I don't want to close any doors. But I guess I never quite go through any doors that way, either.

I'm also leery of taking a stand. I don't like criticism. I have a lot of beliefs that I would like to be able to say out loud with a big "This is who I am and how I live my life," but fear of criticism keeps me from taking a stand and being myself.

The book also talks about finding your life's purpose in the things that bring you passion. What would you do for free? What do you do and lose track of time doing? Obviously I will hike the PCT for free. Right now, long distance hiking, living in nature and simplicity is my passion. I don't think it's the destination, though. It's a journey to something else.

I need to complete the journey to find out what is at the end. Maybe all there is is closure.

I received some before and after pictures in my email today. Before the fire and after the fire pictures of our local backcountry. There are so many places locally I have not been. I could be long distance hiking my own backcountry. I don't need to go to Canada.

But something about the forest I left on the PCT calls me right now. I need to go back, then come home and find a way to make my own backcountry my home. That may mean finding a nice, boring full-time job that provides enough money to live and save money and allows me enough time off for backpacking. A job that allows me time to think and dream and be the idealist that I am without compromising my basic, low-key, low-stress self. I'm not sure what kind of job that is. But I think it's time to pursue a job that doesn't consume me and my mind or force me to pretend I'm something I'm not.

Monday, January 19, 2009

My container garden

I started planting my garden today. I am going to attempt to grow some food in plastic pots. Tony saves every plastic pot that any plant ever comes in. So I used those.

We'll see how it goes. It may be a total failure. But after working at the garden at the Mission, where we only tend the garden 3 hours a week, I figure something ought to grow.

I planted chard, onions, cilantro and lettuce so far. I ran out of daylight. I'll plant more things in more pots in the days to come.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

125 miles to the PCT

I've mapped out my route to the PCT. It is 125 miles long. That's a long way without a resupply. I would still have about 15 more miles to go to reach Hikertown, my first chance for a resupply. My route will probably not allow for 25 mile days. The PCT is so open and easy to follow you can do that sort of thing. Regular backcountry trails are not the same.

Now I'm worried about my ability to carry enough food for the journey.

I'm also concerned with the amount of road walking I will have to do once I reach the Pyramid Lake area. It's going to be very long and tiring. Perhaps this will be a blessing and someone will give me a ride. Maybe even give me a ride to Castaic where I can get something to eat.

Well, I guess I will continue to research this.

Chick hardware store

The other thing I did yesterday was make a trip to the chick hardware store. That's what I call the craft store. I find great stuff there.

This time I went hoping that I could find something to replace my stove. I have a stove that is a small, lidded, metal tin with burner holes that is placed inside a slightly larger can. I would always store the stove inside my titanium cooking pot after dinner. But the pot was usually wet after dinner so the stove rusted. The lid on the inner burner has rusted to the point I can't get the lid off anymore.

I considered making a beer can stove and a catfood can stove. The beer can stove seemed more complicated than I was willing to put up with. The catfood can stove looks nice and simple, but requires me to buy catfood. I don't have a cat. What I like about my stove is the simplicity of simply removing the lid and pouring in fuel.

My plan was to see if the craft store had anything to replace my inner burner container and if not, I'd peruse the grocery store for people food in the same sized cans as catfood, hopefully finding something without that nasty plastic lining. I was in luck. I found a package of small, lidded, metal tins intended to make candles at the craft store. Four of them for $3. That's way cheaper than catfood.

So now all I have to do is figure out how to poke holes to make the burner. That, and find my stove. What the heck did I do with it?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Tarp livin' my life's purpose

The reason I did not want to go further than Ashland, OR on the PCT was because I didn't want to have to buy more gear to deal with rain. I asked the PCT email discussion list what they recommended as far as the driest shelters for Oregon and Washington rain. Someone on the discussion list suggested using a tarp.

I started looking at tarps. Gossamer Gear makes a nice one. They are quite costly for what is basically just a big piece of fabric. So I went to look at buying the fabric and making my own. I looked at cuben fiber. It was $30 a yard. A tarp is about 10 yards!

Then I remembered that Tony had bought me a tarp a few years ago. I could not figure out what to do with it at the time and forgot I had it. I searched in the garage and found it and looked on the Internet for similar tarps. It's a silnylon Campmor/Equinox tarp. Wow, I didn't realize I already had what I needed.

So I went online to research setting up tarps. I found this site that describes setting up tarps. I bought some cord and figured out how to do the knot to tied the lines to my trekking poles. Voila! I have a real tarp tent.

Best of all, it's hugely spacious. Tony and I can both sleep under it and still have room for our gear. That means that I just relieved Tony of the 6 pounds he always has to carry to provide shelter for the two of us when we go backpacking together. I can't wait for us to go backpacking so we can use it.

With the tarp issue solved, I think I shifted a little bit inside.

It has been difficult being home after my big hike. I have endured the reentry process: getting used to civilization again. And I have endured the recovery process: healing my body, gaining back all the weight and getting out of shape again (or rather, back in cubicle shape). I've endured career confusion and a back-breaking, disappointing job I dread more and more, plus an easy, yet boring computer job that I really like. I had hoped to be able to forge a new direction once I returned home, but I have not been able to. Instead, all signs keep pointing back to the trail.

There was a synchronicity when I went to my neighbor's Christmas party and before I could even get far enough inside the house to get a bit of dinner, my neighbor started talking to me about my adventure, eerily being the first person to truly understand it. She somehow knew that returning to the PCT was necessary. She had had to attend a silent retreat twice and she somehow knew I needed to hike the PCT twice. It was as if she came to the party just to find me and tell me this.

I think my boring job is also a synchronicity. It is just quiet enough that my mind can wander and think about anything it wants. It always wanders back to the PCT.

The tarp is a synchronicity, too.

Yesterday I decided to splurge and buy myself a book. I saw a description of a book online and really wanted to read it. It was a book by someone who had spent a year living on Cape Cod. The book was about the "after the year" part. I was hoping it would tell me how to get over something like the PCT. I can never find any good "after the hike" stories.

I searched the library but it was only available at another branch. I wanted to see if it was worth checking out, if it would give me some answers. I finally found it at the bookstore, but I did not resonate with it at all. The woman lived in nature on Cape Cod (well, not quite as in nature as I was, but pretty close) and then returned to her normal life. But she returned to a high-achieving lifestyle. That did not resonate with me, being the low-achiever that I've become.

Another book caught my eye and before I knew it I had read the entire Introduction, the life story of the author. Her life was a lot like mine. Somewhat aimless, always with a tug of war between needing to be responsible and get good jobs and being true to her gifts, which were all things that don't really make money for most people. She finally gives up and declares to the universe that if doing what she loves is so important to her happiness the universe had better show her how to make a living at it. And soon she does.

I don't hold out much hope for that happening for me, but I did like how she said that you should just take a small step in a direction and see if it feels right. If not, take another small step toward something else.

I have signed up for classes at City College. I feel depressed that people I know that I'm linked to on LinkedIn are so much more successful in my field than I am. I really ought to get myself together better. I signed up for some classes to expand my skills in my career. My career that I no longer really work in anymore. Taking that step feels boring to me, yet practical and responsible. I intend to do my best with the classes, yet part of me feels more resignation than happiness.

Back to the shift inside, I think with the tarp issue, I took a step toward committing to returning to the PCT this year. I feel great thinking about that. Purposeful. Excited. Like I'm doing the right thing. I think back to my memories of the trail and feel excited about revisiting some of the places I've been. My heart soars thinking of the mule ear flowers. It thrills me to hike Hat Creek Rim again. I even feel steely determination to this time not let the snow in the Sierras get to me. I will make it all the way through.

I still feel a little worried. I'll eat through my cash faster returning to the PCT than staying home and muddling through. But I have to trust, with the synchronicities, and with my excitement, that it's the right thing, that maybe my answer will come after I finally finish trail. I will just start walking and everything will work out. Or maybe it won't, but who cares? It feels like the right thing to do now. I feel like I have a direction and purpose again. Piper's back.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Pocket shower

I bought a pocket shower today. It's just a dry bag with a shower head at the bottom and a line to hang it from a tree.

Now I will be able to shower without renting a hotel room. Or should I become homeless, I will always have a shower.

Monday, January 12, 2009

I love my boring job

I worked today at my job listening to whales. A thought popped into my head: I love my boring job. I'm not sure exactly why I like it, but I think it's a combination of things.

First of all, the people are nice. There is no office politics or micromanaging or jockeying for power. People just come in and do the work.

Secondly, I can work whatever hours I please. I don't even have to set any hours in advance. I can just show up, work and go home when I'm tired of it.

Third, I can daydream while I work. I think about returning to the trail to hike the PCT again and get excited about my plans.

Fourth, there's a little bit of challenge involved and little chance of making a serious error. All I have to do is do the best I can.

Finally, they make you feel appreciated.

Still, with all that, there's something else about the job that I can't quite put my finger on. It's just very pleasant. A relief, actually, after so much job anxiety for all the years of my life.

I hope I can find another job as good when this one ends. How do you look for a job that's basically data entry, boring and yet a positive experience?

Meanwhile, I saw a job in the paper for a marine sciences database job out at the university. After doing my whale job, that job sounded like a perfect kind of job to shoot for. I would feel good about doing database and web-app development for people doing research on the ocean. Maybe something like that could be my goal as I take classes at city college again.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Life is too full of lessons to learn

My life is too full of lessons to learn. It is not easy.

Right now I'm struggling to maintain a sense of self-worth while not being as employed as I believe I ought to be at my age. It is a good struggle to be in because I have always struggled with that and if I can reach a sense of peace with myself while I exist in career limbo, I will have conquered this life-long bother.

I'm also struggling to follow my dreams. I've always wanted to hike the PCT. I am coming to realize, that hiking to Mt. Shasta means I didn't complete my goal. If I believe in following dreams, I ought to just behave as though I'm going to hike the PCT this summer. I will return in June. There. Now maybe I can get on with life knowing that I'm returning to the PCT.

All I need to do is train, make some plans, figure out what to sleep in during rain, go to my classes and work hard at them as if they really will lead to a good job, continue to believe everything will work out well for me in the mean time, and just stay positive during this period of being in limbo. Stop worrying.

I got a check for $450 today. That's just what it will cost to repair my pick-up truck. Earlier I got a check for $1000. That will pay my rent. If I believe it will all work out, maybe it will.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The 66 year old goat lady

I found the LA Times article about the 66 year old goat lady who hiked the PCT and lived off Social Security in her van with her goat. I used to have this up in my cubicle as my future retirement plan. I mentioned this in my book.

I don't think I would want to live in a van with a goat. They are pretty smelly. But I would not mind the rest of her life.

It's too bad the article does not have the pictures that went with it. But it's nice to find the article. I wonder if the woman completed her second attempt and if she went on to hike a third time or more. I wonder where she is now.

I found a 2 more articles about her:

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Measuring progress

I was contacted by a former co-worker recently, a very nice person. Afterward I had nightmares all night about the former job.

I like my new life better even if I am much poorer and have nothing of importance or prestige to say when people ask "what do you do?"

I hope to make more money some day, but not at the expense of my sanity. I may end up in an old RV parked on Calle Cesar Chavez like the folks I saw when I fixed my bike at Bici Centro yesterday, but that would be better than living my nightmares.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Hiked every day so far this year

I'm two-for-two on hiking so far this year. I've hiked every day this year.

Yesterday TrailHacker and I hiked to Little Pine Spring, a great place at the edge of some of the prettiest wilderness we have. Here are some pictures. Today we hiked a crazy bushwhacking adventure to attempt to get up to Hurricane Deck. But we did not make it. It was fun anyway. I am hiking again tomorrow. It won't be quite as adventurous, but it'll still be hiking

Hiking every day makes life good!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Last year's resolutions

Last year I made New Year's Resolutions. I usually don't do this. Here are what they were:
  1. Do some career exploration

  2. Reduce consumption of material things

  3. Go backpacking more
I achieved them all. Well, maybe I didn't really achieve number 1. I took a class that was in the career exploration section of the catalog, but it lead me to backpacking, not career exploration. But my career certainly has changed and become more exploratory. I listen to whales and work with birds and make web sites once in a while for people. Soon I will have to find another job. I have no idea what to look for, but maybe I will try a temporary agency. Or maybe I will become a companion to old people or a barista. I do not know. I will be taking classes at City College so hopefully I can gain some skills I can sell.

I'm happy that I was able to meet numbers 2 and 3 of last year's resolutions. It is good to reduce consumption of material things. Backpacking makes me happy, and last year I spent 3 months doing it, so I was very happy.

I would like to put number 3 on my list of resolutions this year. Problem is, I don't feel like making any resolutions. I feel too much in limbo. I have no idea what direction I am going. I do feel like the universe is telling me to return to the PCT and maybe I will do that, but I don't feel like making a resolution about it. I will do it if I do it.

If I were to make any resolution, it would be to spend as much time as I can hiking, walking and being in nature. If that means returning to the PCT, then all the better. If that means squeezing in more day hikes or at least taking a walk each day then I will be all the happier.