Hiking The Pacific Crest Trail: Final Thoughts

Dasha and I are standing next to the Northern Terminus, the border between Canada and United States

The thought of what will Serge and I get out of this thru-hike has crossed my mind before we even started. I have tried reading literature about experiences of previous thru-hikers but couldn’t really relate to their journeys. The truth is, I had no idea what to expect other than just do it, taking it one day at a time.

Now that we are finished, there is a thing or two that we have learned. For Serge and I the trail really made us work on our relationship. It was almost like it was nurtured by the trail with every curve we took. It is one thing being at home and having a daily routine of interactions with your significant other: sleep, work, dinner….sleep, work, dinner (repeat 3 times)….weekend. It’s a completely different game being around each other and doing the same thing 24/7 for 5 months straight. There is no other room that you can go to escape a heated argument. The only way is to work things out, and we did. A thought of being “tired” of each other has never crossed our minds, as many people would later ask.

Another benefit of being away from society, surrounded by a small community of hiker friends, was how more relaxed and simple we have become. Back home we would often complicate and stress over the simplest things in life. Out there in the wilderness, living out of our backpacks has really put things into perspective that many take for granted.

Another contrast that is noticed between people who we have met on the trail and people back home is how disconnected every one is back in society. While not paying attention to the news or understanding what the hell catching a Pokémon means we were able to bring ourselves back to who we really are, what we love, and how to be happy.

When we first started sharing with family and friends the idea of doing a thru-hike we were overwhelmed with people’s responses. “Why? Are you crazy? You will not last even a month! No showers?!?! What about laundry? Are you bringing a gun? Can’t you just drive?” Were all among some of the encouraging words we have heard from people. I mean, don’t get me wrong, at first I too thought that maybe our idea of a honeymoon is not an ordinary one. But at least now I know that it’s not me who was crazy, people just don’t get life. This society programmed us to think that working and making $$$ is more important than doing what you love. You only live once! There is so much evil in this world, so many wars, so many people getting killed and live in poverty, that to me it seemed a sin to waist the fortunate life that I have been given behind a computer desk. Work will always be there. People are so afraid to take a risk and step out of their comfort zone. I literally see vegetables staring at their phones every day on my train commute to work. Get up and do what your heart is calling for, that one thing that have been on your mind since high school. Life is short. Don’t take your health for granted because it won’t always be there. Don’t worry about what everyone else says or thinks. You are in charge of your own happiness!

Being crazy is OK!