Planning the trail itinerary and resupply points is one of the toughest and most crucial parts of the preparation process for a thru-hike. Our first edition of our Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) itinerary were derived mostly from the Halfmile PCT maps which are a very useful tool when planning for the hike. The maps are regarded as the most accurate PCT maps available and include extremely beneficial notes on water points, noted campsites, how to get to towns and more. You can visit Halfmile’s website from our links page.
Firstly, let’s start with an overview of where we are planning on resupplying and how. Our party has a unique benefit in that we have connections up and down the west coast. In Southern California, where we make our homes, our family will help out by dropping off supplies every so often until we are out of range. Even then, they will be the ones picking us up for the PCT Annual Day Zero Kick Off Weekend as well. Then we’ll begin mailing supply drops to ourselves in the Sierra Nevada range. There is also a point during the Sierra’s where we are a bit early in the season for a few typical resupply places to be open (Muir Trail Ranch and Tuolumne Meadows being the main culprits). At this point, Erik will join the party at the Independence supply stop and hike with us to Tuolumne, where at that point we will be able to get back to Erik’s car in Independence that will have our supplies in it. Once we descend out of the Sierra’s we will begin linking up with Jon’s parents who still live in the Northern California area (where Jon is originally from). These family supply drops will continue until the party reaches Ashland, OR where the mail drops will resume, most likely for the duration of the trip.
Here is a synopsis of our resupply points along the PCT:
We’ve also created a day-by-day breakdown of our Pacific Crest Trail itinerary. In order to do this we’ve combed through the Halfmile PCT maps essentially traversing the trail in a virtual manner taking into account elevation gain/loss from day to day and factoring all of that into what we think is a realistic distance from day to day. This means that some days we will travel longer distances than others. For instance, the relatively flat terrain of Oregon allows for some 20+ mile days whereas the steep climbs and descents of the high Sierra area will make for some sub 15 mile days. Keep in mind, this is all a guessing game and we’re doing the best we can but there is no real way to accurately predict how our hike will go day to day until we are actually in the midst of it. So, please, do take this with a Gibraltar sized grain of salt.
Here is a day-by-day breakdown of our itinerary in PDF form (click on the link to view the PDF file):