Southern California – the last stretch!

I can’t believe I’m so far behind in catching up this blog.  Why is it the holidays start taking over and then you’re playing catch-up with the rest of your life. . .


Southern PCT starts around Kennedy Meadows, at this point there are only around 700 miles left of the 2658 hike.  So when we last left they were coming out of the Sierra’s and meeting Duncan’s dad and brother.


October 26, 2018 Walker Pass – Mile 2008

Tehachapi Pass is one of the windiest places on Earth.  So now starts the sighting of wind farms, thousands and thousands.  As they climb Tehachapi, there are magnificent views of the Mojave Dessert and looking back there are views of the mountains they’ve been hiking. Also water will start becoming scarce.


October 31, 2018 Tehachapi – Mile 2092


Got a call from Sarra today . . . they are getting into more dessert, not many trees.   She said they’re seeing more cool Joshua trees and rolling hills. IMG_6336

It’s hot, feels like 90 degrees  There have been long 20 mile water carries. Last water was Kennedy Meadows.  Sometimes there’s a water cash, where trail angels leave gallons of water for the hikers.  They have been doing a lot of night hiking since it’s so hot during the day.  They nap in the afternoon then after the sun sets around 6:00 they’ll hike until 9:00 or so.  She was telling me about all the wind mills, 2600 she said.  At that point there was a strong wind advisory.  They’re still rationing food, going longer stretches.  She said Tehachapi was pretty cool.  They had been advised not to hitch, but trail Angels have a coordinator to get rides so they had lots of offers for rides and places to stay. However, they ended up camping at a small airport!


November 8, 2018, Wrightwood – Mile 2295

The trail is great, out of the dessert and back into mountains.  It’s a little chilly when they were at 8,000 ft.  In Green Valley they stayed with a couple that had been hosting hikers for about 20 years.  They had a huge back yard where you could camp.

November 7, 2018  Palmdale CA – mile 2238


November 19, 2018 Borrego Springs CA – mile 2598

November 20, 2018 Boulder Oaks – mile 2633

Almost to the end.  They are excited and sad, all of the above! The weather has been beautiful and the dessert is cool.  Gonna be a great next couple of days!!

There ya have it – just like that on Thursday November 22, 2018 , Thanksgiving Day, Sarra aka ‘Mouse’, Duncan aka ‘D’ and Sean aka ‘Worm’ finished the Pacific Crest Trail.  July 4th – November 22 they hiked 2650 miles through 3 states, Canada to Mexico.


From here, Duncan’s mom met them at the end and picked them up.  After a stay at a posh resort and a buffet for Thanksgiving Sarra caught a flight out of San Diego to our place to catch up with friends/family and rest up.  Then Duncan, Sean and Melissa traveled back up the coast to pick up their van, which was left at a friends in Seattle WA when they took off.

We had a great visit, did a few fun things and also just be together.  While she was home I asked a few questions that people had asked me about:

Best part – North Cascades because really big and seeing glaciers that shaped everything was really cool, Walking around Mt. Rainier and the Sierras were unbelievable.

Worst part – the water carries in the dessert

Favorite state – really enjoyed Oregon for the trees and lava fields and really nice warm weather and started cowboy camping plus all the bugs had died!

Animals seen – I saw some bears, lots of deer, couple cougars, cows, scorpion, a pair of animal eyes while night hiking, a tarantula  and a donkey, pot belly pig at a guys house

Hardest area – last 100 miles because all I wanted to do was camp, I didn’t want to hike anymore.

Would you do it again – yep

What’s next– snow sking all winter

How long without water? – I think 30 miles was the longest, How much did you carry? – carried 7 liters at a time through that 30 mile area

Did you have to ration food? – the longest was 10 days hiking when we planned for only 6 and after that we started carrying way too much food so we wouldn’t have to ration again.

Memorable hitch – Probably Bazooka Joe because there were 5 of us crammed into a little truck and he took us out for breakfast.

Favorite Town – Mom says Quincy CA because she was there, I would agree.

Did you see many other hikers? SOBO, NOBO? Not really, we met maybe 30 other south bounders and in Oregon I was passing like 30 a day, it was the peak of NOBO season.

How many zero days? – We were trying to figure that out, maybe 3 weeks or more.  We took one total week after coming out of the Sierras.

Scariest time – probably when I slipped in some snow and slid down a 60 ft snow field and couldn’t get stopped with my trekking pole.  I finally got my pole into the ground to stop me from sliding about 20 feet before I would have crashed into some really large boulders.

How much snow? up north maybe like a couple hundred yard stretches everyday for the first couple weeks.  Then a couple days in the Sierras when we got new snow.  I think we had a really good window of the time we hiked.

Were you close to any fires? Not that I remember, just remember it was super smokey in Oregon due to a fire,  then we had to detour in Northern CA due to a fire that closed the trail.

How many pairs of shoes? 4, but started with a pair I had been wearing a while, got a pair out of the hiker box, wore out a new pair and got the last pair a couple weeks before finishing. So really only 2 new pairs and one of those I only walked a few miles at the end in.

Favorite trail food? roman noodles or a ramen bomb burrito which is ramen, pack of mashed potatoes rolled up in a tortilla.

Favorite town food? pizza and root beer

Did you ever want to give up? Not really

What do you love about thru-hikes? the people you get to meet, the towns you get to see that you would normally never go to, sleeping outside every night.

So you’re all caught up.  What a great hike.  This one made Mama Mouse a little more ‘concerned’ during a few times.  But exciting to tag a long at home.  Sarra is going to try and keep you up on her adventures in Colorado or where ever life takes her. They are back working at Arapaho Basin, sking and living in the new van.  Life is as good as you make it.  We should all be so lucky to live each day to the fullest.

Central California

Holy hiking Mouse followers, they’re through central California!!  We’re making plans for the end of the 2,658 mile PCT hike.  Not to get ahead of the story, but it’s coming up soon.  Here I go again, getting excited and ahead of the miles.  First, let me tell you that as I sat down to type this up I couldn’t find all my notes I took when Mouse called, so this might be a picture blog!!  I only talked to her a couple times during the central California section since it was so remote, we’ll see if I can maybe ‘wing’ it.

We’re going to start in Quincy California.  That’s where I flew out to hang with them for a couple days.  Let me tell you, it was no small feet to get there.  I flew out from Cincinnati around noon, had a layover in Texas and arrived at the Sacramento Airport around 7:00.  Got to my rental car and took off for a 3 hour drive into the mountains.  The first couple hours were traveled roads, only went through one town and then hit the mountains for the last hour.  It was pitch black, switch-back roads, couldn’t pick up anything on the radio and occasionally I would have to pull over to let a huge logging truck pass.  Needless to say by the time I got to the hotel my hands had dug into the steering wheel, I had no idea where I was, I was hungry and had to pee . . . BUT, could not contain my excitement when I got to the room and there was Mouse, D and Worm, all cleaned up, just watching a movie and eating snacks.  Quincy was a great, old fashion, little logging/ mining town.  No fast food or drive-thru, just good ole fashion home-cooking restaurants.  For two days we ate, drank, walked, watched movies and got the hikers cleaned up, fed, restocked and rested.  Always the goal when we meet!




Brought Sarra some new shoes, socks and a shirt to replace her threadbare, rag of a shirt she had been wearing since the start in July!!  It was a wonderful 2 days, then dropped them off back on the trail and I started driving through that crazy mountain!  It was a little better in the daylight, but I did have a detour that rattled me a little.


September 15, 2018 – Big Creek Road, mile 1393

Back into the woods they go, I fly home and they’re into the central part of California of the PCT. The next big adventure on the trail is the High Sierras.

September 20, 2018 – Donner Pass, mile 1503

September 22, 2018 – Gilmore Lake, mile 1553




September 27, 2018 – Humboldt-Taiyabe National Forrest, mile 1663


September 28-October 1, Yosemite National Park


Gotta include this wonderful tribute to Duncan’s mom Melissa in honor of her 60th Birthday!  How many moms get to be serenaded by thru-hikers on the top of mountains? Happiest of Birthdays Melissa!

Next up was the High Sierras.  They packed 6 days of food and it actually took 10 days to get through. She said the last few days they were rationing food and for a couple days all she had was pop tarts and oatmeal. I didn’t talk to her during those 10+ days since there was no cell service.

Around that time when I got her Spot text with the coordinates it showed them no where near the trail. I must admit I panicked a bit.  I thought ‘are they lost? If they are do they know they’re lost?’  I ended up calling Duncan’s dad on my way to work to see what his thoughts were.  Luckily we were both on the same page thinking that they were off trail walking towards the town of Independence.  Later that day I got a quick text from Sarra and that’s exactly where they were headed.  Duncan’s dad and brother were flying out the next day and meeting them.  After a strenuous hike through the Sierra’s they took about a week off and hiked Mount Whitney (just for fun!), relaxed, ate and rested up for southern California.

Folks around October 23rd they crossed into Southern California! I got a call that they were in Kennedy Meadows which means around 700 miles to complete their hike and get to the Mexican boarder.  You’re all caught up! Next post we’ll finish the hike through California and the end of the Pacific Crest Trail, stay tuned . . . . Happy Trails!




Northern California

I finally found some time to get you caught up on Mouse, D and Worm.  They have been crushing California.  The state is so long, around 1700 miles of the PCT, we’re going to divide it up in thirds to talk about: Northern, Central and Southern.  I haven’t been diligent in taking notes while talking to Mouse, plus we actually don’t connect as much as I would like (says every mother of an twenty-something adult child).  But, she is sending beautiful scenery pictures so that’s always a great treat.

So Northern California is around 408 miles. Let’s pick up our hike blog there.  She called on August 24th, they were hanging out in Ashland OR at Callahan’s Restaurant and County Store.  They had dinner there and ended up sleeping on the lawn. A guy named Bazoka Joe had picked them up when they hitched into Ashland and he told them to call if they needed anything, so when they were ready to hitch back they gave him a call.  Bazoka Joe obliged and loaded them all up in his tiny truck cab.  We always do the best part/worst part when we talk and for this area she said the best was Crater Lake and the volcano landscape.  Just walking over the lava rocks made you appreciate the area and the history.  The worst part was her feet, always the feet!  She said they are fat, flat and wide haha.  She’s wearing a pair of Solomon trail runners that she got out of a hikers box.  So back on trail to attack the big state of California!!

On to Seiad Valley CA mile 996 (almost to 1k)

August 28, 2018 Canyon Creek Trail, mile 1028


August 29/30, 2018 Etna CA mile 1052

Mouse called from Etna today – everything is going good, it’s a town day and gearing up for the Sierra Mountains soon, which will be a challenge.  Shoes are doing good, she had a sore throat and a little achy, but felt better the next day.  Hiking has been great, view are fabulous and the changes in the views and ecosystem are welcomed.  They’ve picked up a bear canister, which is required in the Sierra’s/Yosemite.  If you don’t have one they will kindly escort you out, we don’t want that!  They aren’t passing many North Bounders, most are already up in the Oregon/Washington area finishing up their hikes.  She’s been having a lot of muscle spasms when when she lays down for the night.  We think she is just getting dehydrated and needs to take in more liquid.


September 2, 2018 called from Shasta CA mile 1105

So around September 3, for the first time they came upon a trail closure due to fire.  There had been numerous fires around them and they encountered lots of smoke, but hadn’t yet been diverted because of one being so close.


September 4, 2018 Burney Falls, mile 1235

Well gang – hate to cut this short but Mama Mouse is on the way to Cancun for my own adventure! So I got’s to get packed!! About a month ago I did get to go out to California and visit the hikers, which was a great few days.  That’s where we’ll start up next time – Central California and the High Sierra’s – it’s a blog you won’t want to miss, I promise.  Happy trails . . . .



PCT through Oregon state . . .

img_5670So after 512.6 miles through Washington state, next up is Oregon.  We start at Cascade Locks on July 30th.  Cascade Locks is used frequently by hikers along the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) to cross the Columbia River. Cascade Locks is also the lowest point along the trail

July 30, 2018 – 505 miles – Stevenson WA/Cascade Locks OR – They are at the state line of WA/OR, getting ready to head into state number 2, sounds good considering there’s only 3 states.  BUT, the 3rd state, California, has 1,690 miles of trail.    So, after 6 days of hiking, no cell service, no spot to let me know where and if she’s ok – this mama was elated to get that first text when they got into town.  I had sent her a package, Spot included, and so the second text was that Spot text with her coordinates – Success, we’re back in business.  Later I got a phone call, so we could catch up. They ended up rationing food towards the end to make sure they had enough before getting into town.  I guess when they arrived they went right to diner and ordered 2 breakfast each!  They have gone 512 miles in 24 days plus the 30 they had to hike north to get to the border.  She said the hiking is still awesome and the views are changing.  They are getting into more pine forest woods and out of the top of mountains and above the tree line.  They are finally starting to run into more north bound hikers, so it’s been interesting talking to them.  She thinks Oregon should go pretty quick – at the rate they’re going I should say so!  It’s been really hot, around 102 degrees and they’ve been walking through an area that was hit with a bad fire in the past.  She said she’s never seen anything like that where absolutely nothing has grown back. The section they just came through was up 3,000 ft and down 3,000 ft.  Also, with the heat, water was pretty scarce, so they were learning to drink 3 liters at a time then hike.  After we hung up they were heading to a bar for pizza and beer, I guess the first beer was free to hikers.  But, I’m sure that wasn’t the only beer.  They’ll be back on trail tomorrow.

August 2, 2018 – 551 miles – Timberline Lodge, OR – Timberline Lodge is a ski area.  There is a store and cafe’ and the lodge has a restaurant.  If I remember I think this is where the gang ate 2 breakfasts.  There is summer skiing on the glacier and beautiful Mt. Hood.

August 4, 2018 – Breitenbush Lake – 613 miles – According to Trekking, The Pacific Crest Trail, “the massive B & B fire was started by lightning.  The fire flared up so quickly that the fire service had no choice but to let it burn.  This was one of the hottest fires on record which means it will take decades for the land to recover.  The fire complex began as two separate fires, the Bear Butte Fire and the Booth Fire. The two fires were reported on the same day and eventually burned together, forming a single fire area.   The environment is very fragile and the vegetation has a short growing season, therefore when damage occurs it does not recover.”


August 6, 2018 – Sisters, OR – 669 miles – Had a nice phone call from Sarra.  She said she was being fueled by Ramon Noodles and Dollar Store apple pies! They camped at the top of an Observatory made out of lava rocks.  The next day hiked 4 miles to a lake, sat down and didn’t move for 4 hours, just people watching. They’ve ran into a couple friends, Wrong Way and Wonder lust, they had met on the AT!

August 8, 2018 – 673 miles – Next up was miles of Lava fields, Yapoah Crater, Belknap Crater.

August 9, 2018 – What a change in view!

August 9, 2018  – Went to a store to resupply, but ended up getting a lot of stuff from the Hiker Box, usually near a Post Office and when hikers get packages they drop off what they don’t want.  So far, besides food, Duncan has scored a back pack and Sarra is hiking in a pair of Solomon shoes she picked up from the Hiker Box.  It was late in the day so they ended up hanging out at a Resort drinking beer.  Got back to Shelter Cove with a couple friends and started raising money for more beer by holding up a “Hydrate a Hiker” sign!  They all ended up with enough donations for a couple cases.

August 14, 2018 – Highway 138, they hitched forward to Crater Lake.  So we’re gonna jump ahead just a bit and fast forward a few miles.  Duncan’s mom Melissa met the hikers and treated them to some R&R for a few days. On their agenda is doing some trail magic, resting, eating, cleaning gear and some sight seeing.

So below is Crater Lake, it wasn’t foggy this day it’s smoke from the fires.  The PCT was closed at Crater Lake so they had to take the rim trail around the lake.  The ‘mountain’ in the middle is called Wizzard Island and it’s actually made from lava.

August 18, 2018 – hitching back to Highway 138 to pick up where they got off trail.


August 23, 2018 – Ashland, OR – mile 932 – Coming up on the end of Oregon.  They ate and hung out at Callahan’s Restaurant and Country store and slept on the lawn.  So a guy name Bazooka Joe gave them a ride back to the trail after Crater Lake and he said to call when they got back to Ashland.  So they did and he came to have breakfast with them, even picked up the check!  I always ask Sarra the best and worst part when I talk to her.  This time the best was all the lava and walking around all the volcanoes and the worst were her feet, worried about her feet.

I’ll end with some pictures from the end of Oregon.

Next up is the 1,690 miles of California which is divided into 3 parts: Northern, Central and Southern.  Happy Trails guys, see ya in the Golden State . . .






The start of a SOBO PCT Hike ~ Washington State

img_54591  “The Pacific Crest Trail (commonly abbreviated as the PCT, and officially designated as the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail) is a long-distance hiking trail closely aligned with the highest portion of the Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountain ranges, which lie 100 to 150 miles east of the U.S. Pacific coast. The trail’s southern terminus is on the U.S. border with Mexico,  and its northern terminus on the Canada–US border; its corridor through the U.S. is in the states of California, Oregon, and Washington.  The Pacific Crest Trail is 2,659 mi long and ranges in elevation from just above sea level at the Oregon–Washington border to 13,153 feet at Forester Pass in the Sierra Nevada. The route passes through 25 national forests and 7   national parks.”

We don’t have much contact on this hike, that’s for sure.  Sarra has her ‘find me spot’ which works off satellite and gives me her coordinates when she hits the button each night.  I find that comforting.  There are not many places with cell service and she usually leaves her phone off to save on the battery.  So we only catch up when she gets to a town, which can sometimes be a week at a time.  When she calls, I jot down some notes so I can type type up her adventures.  I keep track of her location by looking in a PCT data book and on a map after I get her location every few days.  Mostly we’ll post pictures.  They have been just beautiful.

July 4, 2018 – Got a good-bye call from Mouse today, here we go again.  After Arapaho Basin closed for the ski season Duncan and Sarra traveled around a bit to Buena Vista CO and Lubec ME.  After getting back to Denver they got packed up and picked up Shawn.  Then, took off on a little road trip stopping at the Salt Flats in UT, Portland OR and made their way to Seattle Washington.  A friend drove them about 5 hours to the Pacific Crest Trail at Harts Pass, mile 2628 for northbound hikers who have started in Mexico.  Mouse, D and Worm were hiking southbound though.  So, after their friend dropped them off on the trail, they had to hike around 30 miles north to the boarder, took pictures at the PCT monument and they officially started their PCT hike on July 6, 2018 heading south.

July 8, 2018– Mazama, WA at Rainy Pass – 60 miles in.  Hiking has been incredible.  It’s a lot like hiking in Summit County where they live in Colorado, but with an obvious path.  But so different from the AT path where there was a white strip on tree after tree.  So far after 60 miles they’ve only seen 3 PCT signs.  They had to put up tents in the rain, but have had great weather so far.  They’ve seen more hikers than they expected.  Food has been awesome, she is eating a lot of ramen and couscous with spices.  They’ve been getting a lot of free stuff to eat from the hiker boxes (boxes put at stops where hikers toss in what they don’t want and grab what they need) and so far, thinks she can do food cheap.  Her grocery resupply was only about $15 for 5 days.  They are feeling good – all that Colorado mountain hiking the past year has been great practice and they’ve started on day one doing 20-mile days!  After we hung up they were walking to a Trail Angels house to spend the night.





July 14, 2018 – Skykomish, WA – 184 miles in – Hiked until about 11:00 last night, have done some big day miles. The hiking is just unbelievable, just incredible views and still a good bit of snow.  The mountains have so much snow you could ski.  They’re using MICROspikes on their shoes.  They are kind of like snow chains you would put on your tires but for your feet in the snow. Such beautiful sunsets when they hike a summit, especially on Glacier Peak.  Everything is going well, feet are fine and feeling strong.   Back on trail tomorrow, but tonight camped out in a Trail Angels yard.


July 18, 2018 – Snoqualmie Pass, WA – 258 miles, hanging out at the Drew Brew – Today we couldn’t get Facetime to work.  I told Sarra to just call me and she said, ‘but I like to see your face 😊.  So, we talked on the phone and sent her a picture of my face then told her to send a picture to me of her face.  She said the mosquitoes are INSANE, they have to run from them!  At one point they ended up setting up the tents at 3:00 pm just to get in them and away from the mosquitoes.  Even then there was a ton hovering over the tent.  Back pack is good, it’s the least amount of stuff she’s ever carried. But, she feels like she’s better prepared even with less stuff.   Great weather still, no rain in 6 days.  They are mostly through the snow so she’s sending back her Yak tracks (to put on your shoes in the snow) and gloves.  She did leave a pair of socks at camp so now she’s down to one pair.  Today is a good morning, first night in a hotel last night so she took an energizing shower, watched the movie Mad Max and now getting ready for a big breakfast.  Then back on trail, next stop is White Pass.  The following pictures are from a previous fire at Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Nothing has started to grow back yet and Sarra said it was very sad and eerie to walk through.  It really makes me think about all the fires going on now and what all that land is going to look like.




July 23, 2018 – Naches, WA Mt White Pass 357 miles in – this was a hard call for me as a mom.  Sarra was a little homesick and missing some girl time.  I mean she has been out traveling and hiking with two dudes for a couple months, that’s a lot of testosterone.  We had a great long phone conversation, but I still wanted to walk out of the house, drive to the airport and fly as close to where they were on the trail as I could.  But, that didn’t happen, although it didn’t stop me from checking it out to see if I could actually pull it off!!  I can’t explain how hard it is as a parent when your close with your kids and they are 2,249 miles away on a remote trail in the mountains.  But I digress, So the night before they had hiked 25 miles and kind of hit a weird spot at that point.  They all just knew what they had to do so they kept on walking another 10 plus miles and no one was talking.  They rolled up around 9:30 that night.  She said the mosquitos are still insane and that the long hike yesterday was really hard.  She’s got bug bites, blisters and missing friends and family in Indiana.  She said she feels like a whimp when her feet hurt.  The other bad thing is she travels with a ‘find me spot’ that runs off satellite since there is not always cell service and each night sends me her coordinates with a ‘safe and sound’ text.  It also sends me a ‘send help’ text with the coordinates if she gets in trouble (we haven’t had to use that yet, knock on wood).  Well, it’s laying on the trail.  So now she must replace the spot because that was my one request during this hike – I gotta get that text with her location each night.  The next morning, she called and was feeling better.  They are coming up on a 150 mile stretch and are carrying 6 days of food.  But when they are at that point the 512.6 PCT miles in Washing ton state will be behind them!!  Some say that is the hardest state and it’s where most people finish.  They hit the difficult part first and took off running (so to speak).



There you have it!!  Washington State was 512 trail miles and they got through it in just over 3 weeks!!  Pretty incredible.  Oregon is up next which is a total of 456 trail miles.  I’m going to close this blog with some awesome flower pictures, love the flower pictures she sends me.

Happy Trails Mouse, D and Worm – your doing great!!  See ya in Oregon . . .


Wow, haven’t shared any information in what seems like forever.  So much has happened, I don’t know where to start!  When we last posted, it was October of 2016 and Mouse had golf ball size, infected blisters on her heels and couldn’t get a shoe on, let alone hike!!  Long story short, don’t want to give away the ending – but I am because we have a ton of information to share.  So, Mouse finished the last 207 miles of her 2nd AT hike with one trail shoe and one Wal-Mart slipper!!  We picked her up from Springer Mountain,  Georgia and got her home to take care of her feet.  She rested up and got a job at Perfect North Slopes, where she also learned to snow ski.  Around Christmas, she flew to New Jersey to visit D (Duncan) cause we all just knew that they were gonna be together (insert hearts).  Then, he came to visit her in February on his way to Colorado.  A month later, I was driving Sarra to Colorado in her Chevy Tracker and then flew back.   They both worked at Arapaho Basin Ski Area and lived  in the Chevy Tracker for about a year.  Worked a few seasons (winter and summer), hiked all summer and skied all winter (and got to be super good I’ll say).  Then, they upgraded their home to a GMC Safari Mini-Van and once the A-Basin closed for the season they took off on a road trip around Colorado, went to Lubec Maine, drove to Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, Portland Oregon and eventually ended up in Seattle Washington where a friend drove them north so they could start at the Canada/Washington border hiking south bound on the Pacific Crest Trail.  There ya go, you’re all caught up and that is where our story is going to pick up – stay tuned for the next blog.  For now, I’m going to put up some pictures so you can see what the last year and a half was like.

So here is Mouse at the end of  her 2016 Thru-Hike #2, southbound from Maine-Georgia:

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So it was a happy tears reunion, I was so proud of her and I think she just melted into my arms so glad to be done.  What a trek this was, broken trekking poles, she had bee and wasp bites, poison ivy almost the entire way, terrible infected blisters and finished in a Wal-Mart slip on shoe! Mouse is for sure Mighty Mouse on the trail.


While Mouse was busy on the trail, we were busy moving into a new house in a different city.  So we took her to her new home, got new jobs, celebrated the holidays and a new year!!

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Of course over the next few months Duncan and Sarra spent quite a bit of time on the phone and got to visit each other a few times. All while planning a move to Colorado together.

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Next came the big move to Summit County in Colorado.  We packed up her Chevy Tracker and hit Interstate 70 headed west!  It was the best road trip ever!  Great music, food and company.  We met Duncan in Denver so they could drive on out to Summit County and I flew back to Indiana.  They both started working at Arapaho Basin and skied, skied, skied!!  When summer rolled around they hiked, hiked hiked . . . .

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When the season ended at Arapaho Ski area this June they took a road trip around Colorado, visited family in Maine, headed west and stopped at the Utah Salt Flats, Portland Oregon and then Seattle Washington.

img_4907P   img_4926   img_50171   OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA


There you  have it folks, your all caught up.  A year and 10 months wrapped up nicely in a WordPress blog!  But what’s next you ask?  Well, let me give you a little teaser and the reason we’ve started this blog again.  Here’s a little hint . . .


The trio of Mouse aka Sarra, D aka Duncan and Worm aka Shawn are hitting the trail again.  This time it’s 2,650 miles of the PCT, the Pacific Crest Trail through Washington, Oregon and California . . .  They started at the Canada border on July 6th so stay tuned and I’ll get you all caught up next time.  Happy Trails . . . .





Beautiful Autumn views and failing feet!

Well, Mouse is down to the last 3 states.  I think they’ve been the hardest because after 1200 miles on one pair of shoes they broke down.  Her new shoes were in the mail when the old ones started coming apart.  Due to bad timing of requesting/mailing the shoes, she had blisters worse than ever.  So bad, she had to get off trail for 4 days and see a doctor.  They were huge and infected.  It was a good news/bad news moment though.  Infected blisters were of course the bad news. The good news is it happened in the Smoky Mountains where her good friend who she hiked with last works.  So Vulture took her off trail to her place and drove her  wherever she needed to go.  We can’t thank her enough.  More on that story later.  Here’s the latest pictures and videos.

October 18, Mile 1889 Jerry Cabin Shelter




October 19, Mile 1900.6 Off Trail


October 20, Mile 5.4 Hot Springs NC



Exact same type and color of shoe, but one has 1200 hiked miles and the other is new!

October 22, Mile 1952 Davenport Gap Shelter



October 23, Mile 1979 Icewater Spring Shelter

October 24, Mile 1982 Gatlinburg TN



Stay tuned, the feet issue only gets worse!  We learned that shredded shoes equal shredded feet!  So, since she took 4 days off, her hiking buddies were at the end of the Smokys.  So in order to finish the hike with them and to reach Springer Mountain together, Vulture drove her forward to meet the guys. She missed about 50 hiking miles, but later when her feet have healed she’ll go back and hike the miles missed.  Definitely a climatic ending   Since getting back on trail she’s been hiking the last 100+ miles with one shoe and one sandal.  The blister is so large she cant get a shoe on.


But, if you know Sarra she will crawl to the finish!!!  Our next post will be on the final few days and reaching Spring Mountain.  We’re coming to the last few pages of the second AT chapter.


The last quarter of the trail

Well gang, we are getting close to the end of AT part II.  Four months ago today we dropped Mouse off at the start of the 100 mile wilderness in Maine with 14 states and 2,189 miles ahead of her.  Unbeknownst to me at the time, as we drove away she started crying and thinking ‘what have I gotten myself into.’  Now with only 3 states and 342 miles left she’s probably sad that its coming to an end.    But it’s not over yet!!Things are still going great.  Here’s Mouse to tell and show you all about it . . .

September 27, Mile 1579 Dismal Falls


September 30, Mile 1641.9 Davis Path Campsite





October 3, Mile 1692 Thomas Knob Shelter


October 4, Mile 1719.2 Damascus Hostel

October 6, Mile 1730.5 Abingdon Gap Shelter


October 8, Mile 1762.3 Shook Branch


October 10, Mile 1770.9 Kinkora Hostel


October 14, Mile 1796.5 Roan High Knob Shelter






There ya go.  The Smokey Mountains will be coming up soon.  After that, Georgia is the last state.  We leave October 31st to drive to Dawsonville, she should be done sometime that week.  Last year in March on the way home from dropping Mouse off for her Northbound AT hike, we loved the drive through the Chattahoochee National Forrest.    I can’t wait to see what beautiful colors and sights await us in October.  But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.  Let’s see what the next 300+ miles hold.  Happy trails . . .

Zero, zero, hike, zero, zero

Mouse only hiked about 77 miles in 10 days, of course I say that from the comfort of my couch!  I’ve hiked 0 miles in 10 days.  But, she’s waited on the guys, some friends from home came to visit and for the first time in 2 years she not only took a double 0, she did it twice!  She sure was ready to hike and sleep in the woods though.  Here are some current pictures and a few videos of the past few days.

September 15, Mile 1477 Campbell Shelter


September 16, Mile 1487 Four Pines Hostel




September 17, Mile 1487 Four Pines Hostel


September 18, Mile 1487 Four Pines Hostel

September 19, Mile 1510 Sarver Hollow Shelter



September 21, Mile 1531 Bailey Gap




September 22, Mile 1554 Holy Cross Hostel


September 23, Mile 1554 Holy Cross Hostel


September 24, Mile 1554 Holy Cross Hostel


There ya go, another week on the Appalachian Trail.  Mouse is back with D and Worm now.  She only has about 600 miles left.  I know that sounds like a lot and it is.  But, when you see it on the AT map and think about how many miles she’s hiked, she’s definitely in the home stretch.  She’s meeting her hiking buddies from last year in the next few weeks.  That will be a great reunion.  And I imagine we’ll be heading to Georgia in about a month to pick her up.  But let’s not get ahead, can’t wait to see pictures from the next 600 miles.  Last year Mouse hiked the southern area in the spring and all the trees were bare.  This year is will be fall and I’m sure the colors will be spectacular.  We’re looking forward to those pictures.  Enjoy the next few weeks Mouse, happy trails . . .

Pennsylvania to Virginia

Boy, it’s been a month since we met Mouse and her trail family.  Sorry for the long span in post, I haven’t received pictures or a lot of phone calls.  She’s been hiking, we’ve been packing boxes, life has just been cruising along.  To get you up to date, Mouse has had her third wasp/hornet sting, she’s on her third round of prednisone for poison ivy/oak, she’s had a cold, had a bear sighting and has lost about 10 pounds.  But guess what . . . still lovin the trail life.  A true thru-hiker!!  She hiked ahead from the guys for a few days, met up with them in Waynesboro VA, then D and Worm stayed back to do some work for cash.  So, for the past few days it’s been just her and Mission.  They guys have told her to slow down so they can catch up.  She’s past the Roanoke VA area and has less than 700 miles to go.  I’ve posted all the pictures and videos I have right now.  In another month or so we’ll be making the drive to GA to pick her up . . . crazy!

August 20, Boiling Springs PA


August 25, Dahlgren Backpack Camp Mile 1148.8


August 27, Stoney Brook Organic Farm Mile 1166

September 2, Pass Mountain Hut Mile 1246.5




September 6, Calf Mountain Shelter Mile 1320





September 9, Maupin Field Shelter Mile 1348.6

September 10, Seeley-Woodworth Shelter Mile 1369


September 11, Brown Mountain Creek Mile 1384

September 13, Bryant Ridge Shelter Mile 1407


September 14, Wilson Creek Shelter Mile 1450.4


I have to leave you with this video, I just love it when Sarra gets passionate about things.  The topic is universal in todays world.  Why can’t you just be a hiker she asks? In todays world I always wonder the same, why we can’t all just be people, we’re all human, why the labels??  Anyway, love it when she’s feisty and fed up so I had to share . . . .