Are you kidding? Seriously? How many responses come to mind when thinking of 2020? I’m not writing this to rehash all the reactions to last year, because you were a part of them too. If anything, I sincerely hope and pray that you, your family, friends, and loved ones are healthy, safe, and surviving.
Let’s take a look at the last couple of years. My PCT thru-hike in 2019. Cut short because of off-trail surgery. Reset. My PCT thru-hike in 2020. Uh… we saw how that worked out for most (name a trail) hikers, not just me. Reset again.
And so here it is, 2021. We’ve all had about a year to adapt, process, overcome, deal with, and mentally whirlpool our minds around a global pandemic. Are you kidding? Seriously?
Some of the dust has settled though. Some small degree of normalcy has just barely begun to creep back into our daily lives. Note, “small degree.” It’s not huge, but sheesh, there’s at least a little that’s starting to feel like pre-pandemic. Kinda like normal.
And now we face the now. What do all the events over the last year, year-and-a-half, mean? They mean we don’t stop, we don’t give up, we move forward. We reach out where we can and help others. We don’t stop dreaming, and we don’t stop pursuing what we believe.
This trail journey, I admit, is selfish. I am doing this for me. I’m attempting this (again) because I just can’t give up on what became a personal mission more than 50 years ago. We’ll give it a go, and see what happens.
This time around though—one significant change—the journey will not be a complete thru-hike. During the last two years, I experienced a multitude of personal circumstances that taught me I cannot be away from home for six months at a pop. It’s just not realistic, and it short-changes some of the people that are most important to me. Not gonna happen.
This journey, then, is going to be built in sections. Approximately one quarter of the trail at a time. Thus the reasoning behind our title, “2021.1.” (Not a James T. Kirk Star Trek log entry.) The first portion of this adventure begins March 19 at the southern terminus. I will “finish” at Tehachapi. That’s about 560 miles and change. Maybe I’ll be back later in the year to start at Tehachapi, and head north for another 600+- miles. We’ll see. If it doesn’t happen this year, maybe next. We’ll see. And that’s all OK.
Are you kidding? Nope.
Seriously? Yep. Here we go.