Planning Resources for the PCT Through Hiker

Go fast enough to get there,
but slow enough to see...

----Jimmy Buffet


The following references are absolutely necessary and you cannot complete a long PCT trip without them: The following references are strongly recommended: Other useful references.

Some Tips

Get a dehydrator -- a good one, with a fan. Start preparing food for your trip NOW. Food preparation is probably the most time consuming item.

While your food is dehydrating, and you are thinking about what you've read, ask yourself Why do I want to do this trip? and How do I want to do this trip?

We can't help you with the first question, but we can give you lots to think about regarding the second. Your most important decision is what to bring. Remember this axiom:

The more I bring, the more I'll enjoy my camping.
The less I bring, the more I'll enjoy my hiking.

Remember, the goal of your trip is to get to Manning Provincial Park. If you really want to just camp, then this is not the trip for you. Carry only the bare minimum of what you need to stay safe, and keep your morale up.

The trend in recent years, since the publication of Jardine's Hikers Guide has been towards lighter packs. Bob Holtel ran the trail with only a fanny pack. But Bob took breaks from the trail often, and had a huge network of helpers who brought him things. A pack weight of 10 lbs, without food and water, is not impossible.

To attain an ultra light pack will have to make lots of your own gear, including the pack. Equipment available commercially usually had a lifetime guarantee, so the manufacturers overbuild it so it will hold up, even with horrible abuse. This adds lots of weight.

A hint for food planning: find a large area, and lay out your food, grouped into daily meals, for a whole month at a time. Then as you pack your resupply packages, you will assure that you don't forget to put your breakfasts in one box....

Also, pack the boxes you will use last, first. You will probably take more care in packing them, and you will need more care towards the end of your trip.

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This page last modified 8 October 96