THE PACIFIC CREST TRAIL
The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is one of the great long-distance trails of the world. It connects Mexico to Canada via a 2,660 mile / 4,280 km footpath across the Western United States.
Thru-hikers, those adventurous souls hiking the entirety of the trail, will face five distinct sections of trail: the Desert, the Sierra, Northern California, Oregon, and Washington. Every year, would-be thru-hikers begin at one border or the other (but usually in the south) to hunt for border-to-border glory and more importantly, for themselves (or at least their spirit animal).
This page is dedicated to helping (or at least entertaining) everyone curious about what awaits them (or their “crazy friend/relative”) out on the PCT. If you have any questions please be sure to get in touch.
And try not to die out there.
so wait, what is this?
This is an always up to date collection of all the research I’ve done and everything I have written about the Pacific Crest Trail – from my own experiences to surveys of PCT hikers.
The amount of content has become a bit overwhelming and so I have divided it up here as best I could (if you have any suggestions on how to make this information more accessible I would love to hear them).
- Location: California / Oregon / Washington, USA / British Columbia, Canada
- Length: 2,663 mi (4,286 km)
- Time Zone: PST (UTC-8)
- Southern Terminus: Campo, California
- Northern Terminus: Manning Park, British Columbia
- Highest Point: Forester Pass, 13,153 ft (4,009 m)
- Lowest Point: Cascade Locks, 140 ft (43 m)
- Elevation Change: 420,880 ft (128,284 m)
- Use: Pedestrian & Equestrian
- Drinking Age: 21 (unenforced)
- Drinking In Public: Go for it!
- Drinking Tap Water: At your own discretion
- Flushing Toilet Paper: Pack it out!
- The Annual Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hiker Survey (2016)
- PCT Class of 2016 Survey: The Gear Guide
- The Annual Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hiker Survey (2015)
- The Annual Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hiker Survey (2014)
- The Annual Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hiker Survey (2013)
PACIFIC CREST TRAIL GEAR POSTS
- The Ultimate Pacific Crest Trail Packing List
- The Final “Complete PCT Gear List”
- PCT Class of 2016 Survey: The Gear Guide
- Gear Review: Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15 Sleeping Bag
- Gear Review: Darn Tough Socks
- Gear Review: Osprey Atmos 65 Backpack
- Gear Review: Mountain Hardwear Super Mega UL1 Tent
- Gear Review: SteriPEN Ultra UV Water Purifier
- Gear Review: CamelBak All Clear UV Water Purifier
- Gear Review: Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer Down Jacket
- Complete Pacific Crest Trail Gear List: Inside Appa The Sky Bison’s Backpack
- 10 Things You’re Forgetting On Your PCT Thru-hike
- The Best Bear Canister For The PCT
- The Best Stoves For The PCT
- The Best Water Filters And Purifiers For The PCT
- Choosing Footwear for a Long Distance Hike
- Trekking Poles – Why?
- Dirty Girl Gaiters
- Gear Review: Sawyer MINI Water Filter
- Gear Review: Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol Sleeping Pad
- Gear Review: Topo MT Mountain Trainer Trail Runners
- The Bear Canister: Combating And Outsmarting Hungry Bears
- Bear Canister Tips And Strategies
- Pacific Crest Trials: A Psychological and Emotional Guide to Successfully Thru-Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail
- 9 Things To Remember Hiking The Pacific Crest Trail
- How Much Does It Cost To Hike The Pacific Crest Trail?
- Physical Preparation For The Pacific Crest Trail
- How Long Does It Take To Hike The Pacific Crest Trail?
- Hiking Solo vs. Hiking Non-Solo
- North Or South – Which Way To Hike The Pacific Crest Trail
- Your Pacific Crest Trail Plans Are Useless
- The PCT: Where I Went Terribly Wrong
- 17 Things I Learned On The Pacific Crest Trail
- The Pacific Crest Trail FAQ
- The Pacific Crest Trail FAQ: Questions From Readers
- Absurd Questions People Ask PCT Hikers
- A Pacific Crest Trail Interview From MadBody.com
- Advice From The PCT Class Of 2015
- Words Of Wisdom From The PCT Class Of 2014
- Appa The Sky Bison: Interview With A Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hiker
- Resupply Boxes (Food On The PCT)
- The Thru-Hiker Diet: Eating On The PCT
- The Kennedy Meadows To Vermilion Valley Resort (VVR) PCT Resupply
- Stoves And Cooking On The Pacific Crest Trail
- Going Stoveless On The Pacific Crest Trail
- The Ultimate Trail Mix Recipe
- The Hiker Food Formula
- The Currency Of The Pacific Crest Trail
- The Pacific Crest Trail in Three Minutes (VIDEO)
- The PCT: Three Second Thru-Hike (VIDEO)
- Wildlife Of The Pacific Crest Trail
- Rocket Llama’s Brilliant PCT Comics
- The Birth Of A Thru-Hiker (VIDEO)
- Photo Essay: The Pacific Crest Trail
- Photo Gallery: Faces Of The Pacific Crest Trail
- Super Fun Time Thunderstorm On The Pacific Crest Trail (VIDEO)
- Raw Footage Of The Pacific Crest Trail
- The Mount Laguna Outfitter And “Getting Daved”
- The One Month Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hike: Is It Possible?
- Confession: I’m Not Hiking The Entire PCT
- A Letter To The PCT Class Of 2014
- 8 Ridiculous PCT Acronyms to Learn
- To Catch A Hiker
- A Word To The Wind
- Tent Envy – Why Bigger Isn’t Better
- The Many Names Of The PCT
- Sleepless Nights On The PCT
- My Feet Are Melting Off
And that’s it!
I’ve tried to make this as accessible and straightforward as possible, because I remember what a hassle it was to find information about the Pacific Crest Trail before my thru-hike.
If you have any suggestions on how this page can be improved, questions about the Pacific Crest Trail, or requests for future posts, then contact me and let me know!