Our Local PCT Guru, Woody Keen

Photo from Oregon section of the PCT

My connection to the Pacific Crest Trail is 3 fold. First and foremost, I am a user of the PCT. I day hike sections, backpack other sections and trail run some sections. It is one of my go to trails when I seek solitude, or need the spiritual healing that the trail and forest always offer, or on other sections seeing many others with smiles on their faces and me knowing they too are receiving the benefits that being on trail offers. The PCT is a very well designed trail (and I should know, I am a retired professional trail consultant) and maintained trail.

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The Rest Day

Hiking Snake Dike, Yosemite. Primo and I awoke to bright clear skies of Yosemite October and previous plans of a day off the stone evaporated. Hotcakes and saskatoonberry jam, mugs of coffee and hickory brews appeared briefly and we lazed bout, stretching in the streams of sunlight trickling through the trees. I quickly scrawled out the topo for Snake Dike, packed some water, rock shoes and chalk bag then roared out of the camp through the chilly morning.

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Fix Your Gear

The fire spread in a blink of an eye and soon feathers were floating down around me like fat snowflakes. My down sleeping bag was the casualty in my momentary lapse of judgement that morning. I simply hadn’t let the alcohol dry on my hands when I lit my beer-can stove, and the moment my hand was on fire I waved it around (note: don’t do that) and splattered flames onto my sleeping bag.

It was day 100-something of my PCT thru-hike, and the only thing I could do was get out my patch kit of dental floss and a sewing needle to close up the 10 inch burn hole. Gathering as many feathers as I could, I stuffed them back in the gaping space that was once my sleeping bag and went to work.

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