PCT Word Problems

On Saturday I’ll be starting my thruhike of the Pacific Crest Trail. I make no apologies for being MIA here this past month or so because A) I do that all the time, and B) it has been CRAZY here. If you’ve been following the PCT permitting during COVID drama you know that permits weren’t released until January, and since I have a late March start date that gave me two months to prep for essentially a fully self-supported thru hike. No hitch hiking, minimal time in town, all packages either picked up at the post office or delivered by friends that have been vaccinated or already had COVID. On top of that we were going through the process of buying a house, so January and February were a constant rotation of dehydrating, bagging, and packing up a house, until the winter storm hit Texas. Then we lost heat and water, but were fortunate enough that Matt’s parents still had heat (but not water) in their maybe 1000 sq ft bungalow so we sought asylum there with our friends that had been seeking asylum with us. Seven people and three dogs we were. Two days later I ran my first ultramarathon, virtually, using the house as an aid station since we were under a boil water notice. Then two weeks later we closed on the house, and March has been unpacking the house and then immediately filling those boxes with resupplies. I thought about setting up blog posts for while I’m away but boy do I not have the mental energy for that. Pretty much all I’m capable of right now is putting one foot in front of the other, which fortunately is the only thing I have to do for the next 6 months.

Hopefully I’ll have better snow luck than we did on the Colorado Trail last summer…that Labor Day weekend snowstorm caused a premature end to the hike.

I am endlessly impressed with people who can blog while they’re backpacking, but that’s never something I’ve been able to do so I’ll just leave you with this thought: If you ever wondered why you had to learn word problems in middle school, it was so that you would be prepared for a thruhike.

  1. Becca needs 3 wedges of cheese for each day she’s eating tuna with her tortillas, and 2 wedges of cheese for each day she’s eating refried beans. Each wheel of cheese contains 6 wedges. If Becca is having tuna 50 days and beans 25 days, how many wheels of cheese does she need to buy? (Remember to round to a whole number because you can’t buy a partial wheel of cheese).
  2. Becca’s mom is going to meet her on the trail. If she’s hiking south from Timberline Lodge at 2 miles per hour for 10 hours a day, and Becca is hiking north from Sisters for 8 hours a day, how many miles per hour will Becca need to hike to meet her mom at Ollalie Lake Resort?
  3. Becca can’t go into Canada at the end of the trail. If she has to hike 35 miles from the end of the trail to a road that’s a two hour drive from Seattle, but the last place with cellphone reception is 75 miles before the end of the trail and she hikes at 2.5 miles per hour for ten hours a day, when she has reception how long should she tell Nicole to wait before leaving Seattle to pick her up?
Additions to the usual gear photo include extra hand sanitizer, masks and mask filters.

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