Oregon At Last


Filthy, I’m absolutely filthy.
Hiker register at CA/OR border. “…love you, Dad, hope your next life is even better than this one,”


August 3

PCT Mile 1715

As I promised myself, I got back on the trail Friday after leaving it Monday. Same scene, different hiker packs lined up in front of the cafe and store.

“You’re back!” said the locals. Guess I was the talk of the town. I saw Art, hugged him, gave him a card and introduced him to Dan, who shook his hand and thanked him for helping me. I saw Sparrow who I hadn’t seen since Tuolumne Meadows, he took time off for family too, also hugged him. Wow, I hope I don’t get sick from breaking the fist bump hiker greeting protocol.

I had to get out of there before I found myself wallowing in condolences so I headed up the 4500′ in 8 miles climb in heat so hot I had to stop every few minutes to let my heart rate ratchet down. Dry camped under a burnt tree just in time for the lightening storm, rain and wind to give my new tent a test drive. Z-Packs Solplex Hexamid weighs nearly nothing and uses my hiking sticks instead of tent poles. It worked perfectly!

I hiked a proper stretch the next day, packing water to camp which I hate but didn’t want to hike the 3 additional miles uphill to the next water in hopes of finding a flat spot. Similar situation the next day but I hiked a few more miles, 24 I think.

We made it to the California/Oregon border at lunchtime: me, Velcro and Zackly, joined in a bit by SOBO Green Mile (for weed, not the death row movie!). I’m done with California, done! Also I’m past PCT mile 1700. How cool is that?

I was joined in camp by another SOBO, Sailor, he left the Canadian border June 23, those guys are fast!

So what are some of the differences in Oregon from California? Can’t pump your own gas, right-to-die, no sales tax, weed is legal not just medical, what else? Got a few hundred miles to figure it out.

Grief got me yesterday when I signed the trail register at the border, saying goodbye to California and life long Californian my Dad. I could barely sleep because it turned to physical pain and I hiked half of today sluggish and lonely, feeling sorry for myself.  I’ve never done this, but I reached out with a Facebook post.  Thank you for all the encouragement and belief!  That and a package of Clif Shotblox with caffeine got me down this beautiful, healing, arduous path a few more miles.

10 thoughts on “Oregon At Last

  1. WooHoo! You have made it so far Alison! Well Done!
    Your dad’s spirit can hike with you now, so look up often, breath deep, and enjoy the ride my friend.
    Love you,

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congrats Alison on the 1700 mile mark and a new adventure awaits in Oregon. You are just an incredible person, simply put. One of the most driven persons I have ever known, you are an inspiration to me.

    I share your sadness of your Dad passing. My dad passed recently too. Our dads are free of pain and the awful confusion of Dementia. I am greatful for that. Not one more day of that hell will he have to endure. I’m sorry for your loss, and greatful his spirit is free.

    Thinking of you. Stay strong and keep hiking on!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, Alison:
    I believe you were in my car from Scout and Frodo’s to the Southern Terminus. Just caught up with your journal — stellar!, and congrats on completing California.

    I was my mom’s caregiver through 8 yrs of dementia — a tough journey indeed, and I know that everyone’s experience is different, but hiking has been my pathway through grief, and I hope the trail will nurture you through difficult times.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Betty, for the ride and for understanding. I am glad that I saw my Dad deteriorate from dementia, he hated what was happening and I think he was ready to go, and I will miss him but will remember him as he used to be. I played to his wry sense of humor and we had matter of fact discussions about the human condition. Good times.


  4. I’m so glad you are back on the trail. I’m in Yosemite, going to work with Vicky tomorrow. Watch out for fires and thunder storms! Three local fires started by lightning in Mammoth last week ( don’t worry, they are all out). I know Dad is watching over you. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Alison, I’m so sorry to hear of your Dad’s passing. You are a super strong woman but don’t ever confuse that with weakness that you had to reach out in your grief. We all need each other. Go get’um!
    We miss you around here, and look forward to hearing all about your adventures.
    Blessings, Cody

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Cody. I am glad I was able to get back on the trail, and get whacked with grief. When I reached out, I was blown away by all the people, both present and far away, who cared and understood and believed in my strength. Hard to ask for help, and amazing to get it.


  6. the good the bad and the ugly comes to mind got a shirt today for the measly six days i will be on the trail not sure if i will love it more or hate it less for the grime it will carry for me I am so ready to start at my pack with scissors/knife/my teeth anything that will get the job done but one way or another I am ready to go and counting hours till the plane/the trail/ your stories i have never been more nerve wracked and calm/happy/ refreshed wow life is good and life on the trail is better you should know that your quiet inspiration aquired from your dad reaches beyond you in sub-tentacles (is that a thing?) and trail life is an enigma loathed and coveted I cant wait to see you my friend could you would you did you read the book mumford and sons comes to mind I will wait for you though totally not appropriate if one hears what one wants to see you soon and check that text when you can

    Liked by 1 person

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