Two years down the track

There’s no better way to bring on nostalgia, than by rediscovering all the gear and clothing I carried for 2,650 miles along the PCT, for the first time since I finished the trail.

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It’s been 2 years since I stood at the Southern Terminus and began that life changing experience. Since then, a whole season of hikers have lived their own adventures along that twisted red line that stretches all the way from Mexico to Canada. Remember what that looks like?

I do. All too well! But now when I look at that red wiggly line and imagine walking every mile, all I can wonder is how?

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MUK AUK?? Ahh well… close enough!

I’ve had a few people contact me about their upcoming hike on the trail this year; and if I played any part in inspiring them to get there, that’s the best news I could hear. Every time someone tells me they’re off to hike the PCT, my immediate reaction is envy. I can never go back to that cloudy day on April 15, 2013, when I stood on the trail looking north to Canada and thought, ‘well, here we go!’ But as I was talking to my friend Leigh recently about repeating the experience, we concluded it just can’t be done. Sure you can hike the trail more than once, but there’s only one first time for the trail; and like the first time for anything, it’s often the most special.

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I was sad to discover recently that I barely fit into my hiking pants anymore. I’m not talking about the pair I finished the trail in, when I was a bag of bones with loose skin hanging off me. I’m talking about the pair I started in, when I was beefing up before the trail. I said in my last post that I feel more solid, well there’s probably good reason for that! But it simply makes me more determined to hit the trails. Since arriving in my new home, I’ve done a few short walks to set me back on the right track. Despite feeling pain in the front of my shins and the small bones on top of my feet, it felt good. But you better toughen up body, you ain’t seen nothing yet!

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I was also disappointed to hear recently that a fellow mountain-lion-fighting lass named Cat has been diagnosed with hip dysplasia, just before starting her journey on the PCT this year. Though devastated by the news, she isn’t going to let her condition stop her from following her dream. She may not be able to hike the trail the conventional way, but she’s determined to tackle it whatever way she can. Her story is inspiring!

I also discovered in the most mysterious way that my SPOT device is out on trail again this year, being carried by a Kiwi named Stewart. The device completed the trail last year with a hiker named Brian, whom I can only assume has passed it along to Stewart for his 2015 hike. How do I know this? You’d never believe me if I told you!

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The SOS button looks worn out!

So with new footprints marking the soil of our beloved trail again this year, instead of feeling envy, I’m going to celebrate the class of 2015 beginning their epic adventure, and the fresh start of my own!

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14 thoughts on “Two years down the track”

  1. Dear sweet Rozanne/Muk Muk, I sold the SPOT to Stewart Taylor, who I had met at ADZPCTKO 2013. Yup, I was at kick-off for your year, and later found out that you were in the Dirty Girl Gaiter booth, whereas, I helped make and serve many of the meals. It was at this kick-off that I met Stewart. As you know the trail-community is tightly coupled bunch. Unfortunately he was unable to hike in 2014 whereas I was, and he delayed until April 7th this year. So the SPOT now had two labels inside the back cover: Muk Muk 2013 and Tartan 2014. I’m hoping it’ll make another thru-hike and have Stewart’s label too. BTW, I’m following his journey on PostHoler under “stewart50”, and also I’m plotting his daily SPOT messages on http://1fifoto.com/pct-2015. Sincerely, Bri/Tartan P.S. Send me an email to bwatt@1fifoto.com explaining how you found out he has it – I’m very curious.

    1. Ha ha! The trail holds many secrets and mysteries within its boundaries… this is just another one of those. All I can say is that the trail’s magical timing certainly hasn’t changed since 2013, and continues to surprise me!

  2. Dear Muk,

    It is hard for me to even put into words my respect and gratitude to you for sharing your story. 2 years ago I began to dream of the trail and was lead to your blog. Over your journey I became certain this was my path as well. Through your bravery and courage I was inspired to start living as well and started thinking, what was my story? In December I quit my job and put everything into storage. I’m writing you this from mile 135.2 of the pacific crest trail and owe most everything to you. Thank you for helping guide my destiny. For that I’m forever indebted to you. Thank you my trail sister and friend, you have changed my life forever.

    1. Woooner you’re on trail! Your note has brought a tear to my eye. I can’t believe you’re out there right now. Please tell me you’re keeping a blog! Say hi to the trail for me and have the most wonderful journey! Happiest of trails to you!!!

      1. Your blog’s awesome! From a quick scan it looks like you’ve formed a nice group! Ahhh Idyllwild! One of my favourite trail towns! I’ll keeping checking in. Hope the knees hold up. Try to get your hands on some Absorbine gel. It’s for sore muscles and joint pain in horses so it works a treat! I was using the stuff all over my body by the end! Happy trails Woooner! 🙂

  3. Muk Auk, hahaha… (my family owns a trophy shop… if I could fix that for you I would). As I sit here at the Dallas airport, waiting for my San Diego flight, I can’t help but spy forward and imagine what my “after the trail” story will be. I committed to the PCT only a few months ago, right before my last surgery (Nov ’14), and the time has flown by. I keep trying to slow it down knowing all too well how fast it can go. With all the amazing adventures I have been able to do in my life, I know that this will be one of those special ones. I just hope that I can have the same optimistic outlook as you displayed, and enjoy the trail for all it is. I hope that I can stay just as open and share my real experiences with others as they happen. Thank you for sharing and inspiring others to live.

    1. You’re gonna do great!! And you’ll have plenty of miles to mull over your after trail life. It could be very different to what you expect it to be right now! Safe travels!!

  4. I know you mentioned Wired was one of your inspirations way back. If you haven’t seen her page for a bit you should peek at what she is doing right now. The Hayduke Trail. I think you will enjoy it, if you haven’t already been checking her blog.

  5. Muk you rock!!! Thanks sooo much for your support and the inspiration. I feel like we are connected and I’ll take you with me on trail! love and a wonderful summer/winter to you!!! Cat

  6. I’m still reading your PCT blog – I’m with you in mid-August. I think I read more than I get my work done! Anyway, looking forward to reading more today.

    Do you hear from UB at all?

  7. So good to hear form you! Glad all is well! Been wondering if we’d ever hear from you!! Love all the packing stuff. It’s so fun to look back and have the memories come popping up! The girls and I are headed back to the trail for two more sections this summer. Hoping there is water!!

    1. So good to hear from you too!! I have my necklace with me and think of you guys every time I wear it! The water situation must be terrible this season. Hope it doesn’t affect your hikes too much! Love to all the Trampers!!

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