PCT Section, OCT, Timberline Trail, JMT, WHW, TCT, WCT – alphabet soup! I have read so much information on each of these treks some of it starts to mix together. They are all on my bucket list to complete. I wanted to pick something that would be personally challenging, not too difficult to get a permit, and fairly safe/easy access.
Time of year. I got two weeks to play with in September, this limits some of the hikes
Pacific Crest Trail section – I was looking at doing some of the sections in Washington. One was to hike towards the Canadian border then start heading SOBO. Two reasons this seemed like a good idea – 1) my husband could drop me off and pick me up 2) If I ever wanted to section the whole thing, that one is kind of a pain to start. I chose against this route though as it would be later in the season, and I wanted a loop if possible. I was also looking at Section J in WA but some logistics with rides was daunting and I knew my husband did not want to drive 8 hours just to drop me off.
Oregon Coast Trail and West Coast Trail – I decided I felt I was more longing for a mountain trek and wanted to stay away from the coast. September can bring more rain, and being on the coast was not what I had in mind.
West Highland Way – Is definitely on my short list of treks to do, but the urge to keep air fare low, and there is so much to do on this continent. Adding it to the bucket list though!
Teton Crest Trail – This one is also on my short list! I believe I passed on this one just purely due to accessibility and I will be honest I wouldn’t be able to tell you where Wyoming was without looking at a map. I hope as I learn and grow as a backpacker that this is one I will be able to one day see!
John Muir Trail – After going through permit anxiety, I did not want to deal with that all over again. Such a high snow year in the Sierra I knew that there would be more pressure on late season permits. Yes there are always walkups however I don’t like the idea of buying a plane ticket and not knowing if I will be able to do the hike (see my post about permits :P). While looking at options in this area around the JMT I stumbled on this beauty of hike:
Big Seki Loop – this trek is around 155 miles and is a full loop, no need for pesky drop off/pick up shenanigans! Permit system is easy, and a chunk of the route is on the JMT! I was sold!