(1) Where are you from?
Spokane Valley, WA
(2) What day did you start?
(3) What day did you finish?
(4) Do you have a trail name?
(5) If so, where did it come from?
My never ending love for cookies, I carried them every resupply!
(6) What did you dream of when things weren’t going well?
My bed, and a hot shower!
(7) Did you experience anything miraculous?
Yes! Mother nature. I was once caught in a hail storm going over Sonora Pass where I saw the mountain break into mudslides, and a boulder the size of 3 people tumble down the mountain destroying HUGE trees while my hands were getting pelted by golf sized hail! That was nuts. Also, walking across "knifes edge" in the goat rock wilderness and getting stuck in a snow storm with zero dry clothes to put on that night because it had been raining for days, and not dying a hypothermia... that was miraculous. Also, finishing the trail.... it still doesn't even feel real.
(8) Any memorable encounters with the elements, or wildlife?
Elements...see last question :) you may think you're invincible, but you are so wrong, nature wins...every. time.... WILDLIFE! I saw 4 bears! Many many other little creatures but that craziest encounter was when I saw a wolf at night just before getting to timberline lodge. I cried until he ran away. Its slanted eyes were orange/red in my LED headlight... I thought it was a coyote at first until it stood up.... but I dont think coyotes get that huge. Scariest moment of my life!
(9) Think back to your “pre-hike self.” Now think of yourself here at the end. Has anything changed?
Everything has changed.
(10) Now that you are off the trail, what do you miss most about it?
Freedom. A purpose. Being outdoors ALL THE TIME without a choice. No worries. The views. The air. Sleeping in a tent, never showering, and just being a part of the trail. The PEOPLE... the people that hiked the pct are the only people that can possibly understand how I feel.
(11) Before you started, what were you most afraid of?
I was afraid I was going to get injured! I had nightmares that I would have to quit because of an injury...and I think that was good because it made me be very careful in the beginning not to push myself.
(12) Now that you are finished, what are you most afraid of?
I'm most afraid that hiking the pct is most exciting thing I'll have ever done in my life. I'm 23... it's like the bar has been set, so what's my next big adventure? I have no idea! People are already asking, "so what's next?" like I'm some super adventurer now, when in reality, I'm flat broke without a job and the thought of being around more than one person who's not a hiker gives me anxiety and I have no idea what I'm even doing right now.
(13) What’s the difference between life on the trail and life off the trail?
Everything. Literally everything. It's not okay to go a week without showering, I'm not eating protein bars and nuts every day, you dont smile and say hi to every single person you see (and if you do you're a weirdo), exercising every day for hours is now "unhealthy," but what am I suppose to do with myself? However, more positively, I can appreciate the rain now in real life. After days of rain on the trail, it became more painful, but theres something beautiful about rain on your face when you're able to go inside whenever you want.
(14) Would you like to add anything else?
I could literally break the internet with the amount of things I have to say about the pct. There are really no amount of words that could possibly describe the type of feelings and emotions I felt during those months on the trail. It was the most stupid, crazy, beautiful, life changing thing I have ever experienced in my life. My wildest dreams can't even compare. I wish I could be a bum on the trails forever. I wish I was still there to be honest, and I know these feelings will go away, but life off the trail just seems so silly now. People driving cars to get places. People paying other people to do simple tasks for them. Working our lives away just to survive, and for what? To dress in nice clothes and pay for fake hair, and drive nice cars? I dont get it.... I'll stop now. Damn lol I miss the pct!!!!!!!