More photos and videos to share!

Squeeze Me Biscuits (Clint) and I had a great time last week. On our third day of hiking, he surprised me with a spring-chilled can of Guinness, moments after I punctured my air mattress with my manly .6 oz knife (don’t ask). I think we encountered deer every single day, sometimes as close as 5-10 meters away. We reached the Marble Mountains near the end of the week, but unfortunately the trail didn’t spend much time in them. We had two epic night hikes, saw the smoke of a forest fire that felt on the edge of being “too close”, were awoken by timber operations at 6 am, and met a handful of generous, friendly folk in two small towns that reaffirmed our hope for humanity. Thanks for joining me, Clint!

Here is Squeeze Me Biscuits’ photo album if you’d enjoy a gander.

Also, here is a smattering of videos I took from the High Sierras and the desert. You can tell I was having a lot of fun climbing the south side of Seldon Pass in the heat, hehe.

If you still want to see more, here is a series of videos of friends from the first 650 miles of the trail. It mostly features the inimitable talents of Six-2…dancer, bard, conspiracist, sojourner extraordinaire. Our never-before-released footage of the Yucca-man is here, as well footage showing just how dire things get on the trail….Is Six-2 in fact eating a dog turd that he found on the road, or…OR a Clif bar rolled to look like a dog turd? Even with post-processing forensics, it isn’t clear. One thing is certain….we found ways to entertain ourselves through the inhospitable wind of the Mojave. Enjoy!

Off-trail for now

Well friends, I have decided to stop hiking north this season. A lot of factors influenced this decision, but mostly I’m not interested in hiking alone. My friends are largely spread out and in different locations. I didnt meet a single northbounder the last couple of days on trail, but enjoyed meeting 8 or so southbounders who left Canada in June! We had fun swapping advice on where the free shower stalls are at nearby campgrounds, best eats in various towns, secret wifi passwords for little cafes, etc.

I may still join the Undertaker for a week on trail before the season is finished. I’d like to reach the 1,500 mile mark, although I likely have already with the various side mileage. (One example: I foolishly had Clint and I start at the I-5 exit of Castella, mile 1499, rather than mile 1506 where I’d already hiked to on the alternate route. These 7 mile blunders add up over time.)

I’m grateful for everyone’s support and interest! Hopefully, I can complete the trail in some future season. I hope to update my posts with elevation profiles and processed photos in the weeks ahead. I know I have some terrific shots from the High Sierra that have yet to see the light of day.

Squeeze Me Biscuits and Quack-Quack were kind enough to deliver me to Portland, from where I was able to catch a Bolt Bus to Seattle. I weighed in at 186 lb again, so I’m busy eating and drinking in excess all the things that you’re supposed to consume in moderation, and have been very, very lazy this week.

Hope everyone has had a great summer!

Day 104: Seiad Valley

August 15th
Today’s miles: 17
My total mileage: 1475
PCT mile 1649


We made it. We’re melting. A local said it’s definitely over 100 degrees.

We made 150 miles in the past 7 days, a good week. We enjoyed meeting 6 or so southbounders from Canada! Unfortunately, there are very, very few northbound (nobo) hikers down here now, heh. Mulling over options now.


Our final water source. The bugs were particularly bad today and we just had to keep moving. It helped so much to know that town was only a few hours away.

Probably at least 10 properties had signs like these posted. It has something to do with property rights on account of the National government changing or contemplating the changing of the status of a million acres in the region.

We knew there was a 4 mile road walk into town, and about a mile in, we passed a gate with multiple “BEWARE OF DOG” signs, but also one that read, “HIKERS – I give rides into town for gas money”. Clint’s ankle continued to be a source of pain all day and we decided this was the best solution (I could connect my steps to this spot next time I hiked). I passed the first gate and started to pass the second when a voice called out from the woods. “Need a ride?” “Yes please, if you don’t mind.” “I’ll be down in a minute.” It was a little weird. I could barely see the outlines of a house with a porch, but didn’t see the man. Honestly, it felt a bit like an early scene in Deliverance. The man soon drove down and loaded us, and we’d gone about a mile before we realized there was a very large dog behind us in the cab, which gave us a good laugh. We thanked and paid him, and then plunged into the little convenience store, where I bought cold soda and beer.

We tried to get a hitch east to Yreka, or even the little hamlet of Hamburg, to save Jena time on the road, but to no avail. She arrived late afternoon and we were quickly whisked east and north to Ashland, where we enjoyed a nice dinner and more beer at Caldera Brewery. SMB and Jena had credit for a free night in a Medford hotel, so we enjoyed the comforts of AC. Apparently, I had quite the body odor (impossible, I know) and when my hosts suggested I shower, I said I would in the morning, much to their chagrin.

Possibly the worst restroom on trail. Just hike 100 meters out into the brush.

This is the town’s cafe, trading post, and post office all rolled into one. (You can see the State of Jefferson logo on the green sign.) The RV park is to the right of this structure. And that is Seiad Valley. We saw the guy in the blue pickup pull in, buy a single can of beer, and pull away.
Enjoying well-earned milkshakes at Tolly’s in Oakland the next day.

I really enjoyed my time on trail with Squeeze Me Biscuits and appreciated his willingness to make it happen, and a huge thanks to Jena for helping extract us and return me to Portland the following day.

Day 103: We Got This

August 14th
Today’s miles: 24
My total mileage: 1458
PCT mile 1632
Today’s ascent: 5,200 ft

Trail art. No, we did not spend the time making this.

Today, we overshot a critical water source by a 1/3 of a mile, so we had to double-back and find it. In defense of our mistake, the sign for the spring was on a tree that was 3 meters to the left of the trail, silly. We pushed hard throughout the day because we have a relatively narrow extraction window tomorrow of 3 hours at Seiad Valley.


Just as night fell, we reached the flat campsite we’d been targeting, and found a fire roaring away. Two very young hunters (16?) have set up a base camp here. They share a long simple tarp setup and have an aura about them that they genuinely belong to this wilderness. Their family knows they’re up here for a week at a time. They’re not worried about getting fined for the fire, because the “local rangers are too lazy to come up here.” They can’t fathom that we’re going to reach Seiad Valley tomorrow, which is surprising to me, because it’s only 16 miles and all downhill, but I suppose they are more used to carrying heavier hunting gear and carcasses out. They fully expect to have a fresh kill before the next night, and said they’ll grill some of it then and there. I asked if they weren’t worried about bears coming to investigate. They said they’ll just shoot them too then.

It’s quite cold, and I am thankful someone else has made the fire and bears responsibility for it.

Day 102: Etna

August 13th
Today’s miles: 20
My total mileage: 1435
PCT mile 1608

While peeing off the side of the trail, the wind picked up. Squeeze Me Biscuits turned to avoid hitting himself and his trekking pole went over the edge, ehehe.

I convinced Squeeze Me Biscuits into dropping into Etna for a 4 hour break. I promised him we’d return to the trail that afternoon, and by Jove, we did. Thanks to Chris who treated us to several rounds of the blackberry blonde at the Brewery! And also big thanks to Susie and Tim for giving us rides to and from the trailhead! That was Squeeze Me Biscuit’s first hitchhiking experience! We ended up hiking 11 more miles, long into the dark. It was worth it!

I really did intend to enjoy only a single pint. But then Chris, a local, bought us two more rounds. Remarkable that we still continued to hike!

We found a sad looking sunflower on a church lot in Etna. Squeeze Me Biscuits rose to the challenge of seeing to its needs.

What is this thing?!


A little hostel run by a British couple on the edge of Etna. We stopped in just to wave at other hikers.

The local I mentioned earlier, Chris, had invited us to stay at his house. He said he would barbecue on his grill and that he had growlers of beer at home. It was all very tempting. But Squeeze Me Biscuits was eager to return to trail and I had promised him we wouldn’t fall into the vortex of town, so we politely declined. We walked to the edge of town, where there’s a B&B with a small structure on the side that is specifically for PCT hikers. I spoke with the British owner, and he said we wouldn’t have any luck hitching up to the pass at this time. (It was around 6:30 PM), and that we’d best try in the morning. As I’m speaking with him, a lumber man, Tim, pulled over with a pickup truck full of chainsaws and fuel and several hikers already. We jumped in and we were soon back on trail.

Smoke from nearby forest fires fills the air.

Typical example of a trail register. Occasionally, you come upon a notebook such as this and it’s a nice way to communicate through time across the trail. It helps to know how far ahead a friend might be, or whether they’ve even passed yet. Sometimes these are found in little wooden kiosks that perhaps an Eagle Scout has made as his project, but more often than not they are found in towns, at post offices, trading posts and key hiker establishments.
My first and only scorpion of all of California. I would never have expected it this far north.

I haven’t played a mobile game on my phone for ages. While cowboy camping last night, I thought, “Ok, I’m gonna reward myself with 10 minutes of a casual game on my phone.” Earphones plugged in. I load Plants vs. Zombies 2. And immediately realize what a mistake I’ve made. Moths start dive-bombing into my face. It was a short lived experience. So tonight, I pitched my tent in the dark, partly just so I could enjoy 10 minutes of zombies. It was perfect. I got my fix.

Day 101: Farther than I-5!

August 12th
Today’s miles: 26 (+.2)
My total mileage: 1415
PCT mile 1588

Over 1400 miles, woot! If only the trail always went north! Out of morbid curiosity, I recently entered “Tijuana, MX to Vancouver, BC” into GoogleMaps and was shocked to see that it was less than 1,400 miles. How then does the trail take 2,650 miles?! Ack!

I-5 Mexico to Canada



We hiked late into the night on a trail like this. In retrospect, perhaps it was a mistake as we missed some of the views (plus it was probably a tad bit dangerous).

My best sunset of the entire season.

We pushed hard to find a flat spot. At one point, we even began to consider pitching on the trail itself, but I would have felt uneasy being so close to the edge.

Day 100: Oh Oregon, Where Art Thou?

August 11th
Today’s miles: 22
My total mileage: 1389
PCT mile: 1562

Well, we didn’t choose a good place to sleep the night before. We had struggled to find a flat spot and finally settled for an area slightly off-trail, next to several large dead trees. I should have trusted my instinct. I put my air mattress down to cowboy-camp and it soon had 6 or 7 large carpenter-like black ants. They were all over us and I awoke with a swollen eye, lol.

Also, some critters got into Clint’s trash and he had the fun task of trying to collect it all again.

And now, the reveal and story of how Clint earned a most fitting trail name. First, some necessary background. In college, Clint had the nickname Squeezy C. I’m not sure of the origin of that, although he certainly seems squeezable. Clint is a vegetarian, and told me he’d arrived with 14 Mountain House meals for the 7 days we’d be hiking. He was particularly excited that he’d picked up multiple freeze-dried Biscuits & Gravy packs, and couldn’t wait for our first morning on trail to try them out. Well, tragically, they were a disaster. First of all, the biscuits required a separate boil and wait time than the gravy. Anything that involves more labor on trail is always a bad thing. But I guess they weren’t up to snuff and didn’t really look and taste like traditional biscuits, hehe. He soon had flour over everything and expressed his deep disappointment with Mountain House with this particularly meal. Worse, he still had a bunch of them now remaining for the week ahead.

As more and more southbounders began to pass us going the opposite way, I picked up introducing myself (Ironhusk) and then introducing Clint with the most ridiculous trailnames I could think of, doing my best to keep a straight face and voice. The names were so bad, I often practiced them in advance internally so I could give the delivery of a lifetime. Usually, Clint would just shake his head, roll his eyes, and we’d move on.

Combining his Squeezy C moniker from long ago with his Mountain House disaster, it seemed only natural that he was: Squeeze Me Biscuits.

After the third girl in a row laughed and said to him, “I like that.” He said it was a done deal and he was happy to bear the name.

Clint had suggested we try to sleep near a water source tonight, and the distance/timing worked out right. We found a flat field full of dry cow patties and set up to cowboy camp. He filled a bladder with cold water and 15 minutes later, surprised me with a can of Guinness he can kindly carried since Castella. I was very appreciative.

Moments later, while cutting the plastic on my shrink-wrapped homemade chili, the plastic gave way and my hand with the knife continued in an arc, putting a huge gash in my inflatable mattress (and very nearly slicing my own leg). I was so very fortunate that I didn’t cut my thigh. And I knew it.

So, as I felt my mattress decompress….I told myself I wasn’t going to focus on the terrible thing that just happened, but instead, I was going to really enjoy the Guinness, eat my chili, and then put a plan together. After my meal, I found a small amount of cuben fiber tape that came with my Zpacks tent (intended to repair holes in the fabric). I applied it to the 1-inch gash in the mattress, reinflated, and it held. A serious relief.


Day 99: Every Way But North

August 10th
Today’s miles: 23
My total mileage: 1367
PCT mile: 1540

Distant forest fires are sending smoke all the down here, giving the views a persistent hazy look. The smoke doesn’t bother us with regard to breathing, but Clint’s eyes do seem to be sensitive to it.

We woke up to the sound of large-scale timber operations. They were still a ways away, but close enough that we could easily see what they were doing. They started super early, probably to leverage the cooler temps.

Curiously, there were footprints painted onto the pavement. It was a huge stride!

Another momma deer and it’s two babies were on the trail in front of us.

Meriweather Moore surveying the path ahead.

Day 98: Back in the Saddle Again

August 9th
Today’s miles: 19
My total mileage: 1344
PCT mile: 1517
Today’s ascent: 6,200 ft
Today’s dinner: Kraft Mac & cheese


PCT Castella to Seiad Valley

My old college friend, Clint is joining me for the next 7 days. It is great to have his company. We hope to push 151 miles from Castella to Seiad Valley.


We cowboy-camped at Callahan’s in Mt. Ashland the night before, and realized in the morning we were right next to Honeybadger and Dogpaw! It was great seeing them again. We hadn’t seen them since the town of Bishop, around mile 800.

For the first time ever, I helped someone else do a gear shakedown. Clint lost a lot of gear weight. We left his hammock and cook kit, amongst other things.

EXTRA: Joe Brewer has an excellent video showing this stretch of trail from Mt Shasta (Mile 1507) To Ashland (Mile 1727). I highly recommend subscribing to his channel:


July 31st
Today’s miles: 6
My total mileage: 1325
PCT mile: 1507

Goal #4 has been reached! I’ve now hiked 1,325 of the 2,650 miles. It is an estimated 3 million steps. My cumulative total ascent is 244,782 feet. My cumulative total descent is 240,471 feet.

I had my first post office pickup today of the entire trail, and the little building didn’t open until 11 am. My brother had kindly ordered some Darn Tough socks for me; I was well overdue. I did the truly tacky thing of putting my old unwashed socks into an envelope and mailing them back to the manufacturer. (They are known for an excellent lifetime warranty.) By the time I could get my delivery, everyone else had blown out of Dodge.

I climbed up a service road for a couple of miles to the ridge above Castella, but felt very fatigued in the heat and decided to take some time off. I returned to ‘town’ (the Chevron and post office) and managed a hitch soon after to the real town of Shasta just 10 miles north. My hitch generously dropped me off at Roundtable Pizza, where I ordered a pitcher of beer and an extra-large pizza just for myself, hah! I met a terrific local who offered to house me with her family for the night. We’ve rented several Redbox movies and are having a grand time. This is absolutely what I needed.

Think I’m gonna return to Portland tomorrow and reassess and try to fatten up a bit!


These photos were taken a couple of weeks ago. At the time, I was still 180 miles short of the midpoint, due to the 8 days I missed from Sonora Pass to Sierra City. Surprisingly, there wasn’t much of a vibe of jubilation there. More sobering than anything.