Hiking is an outdoor activity that almost all of us love. While it’s a way of taking a break to explore nature and enjoy some fresh air for some, for others it is a more serious activity in which they can constantly challenge themselves. But one thing is for sure; whether you are an experienced hiker or just starting to discover the activity, hiking is an excellent way of experiencing the beautiful outdoors and a wonderful way of refreshing yourself away from the monotony of daily life. An opportunity to observe the beautiful wildflowers, take a break at a lovely little stream or waterfall, and watch the sun set in the horizon with views unmarred by skyscrapers—hiking offers all this and a lot more. In addition, it is a great activity for people of almost all ages, and can be a considerably cheaper option as compared to some other outdoor activities.
The United States has an abundance of amazing hikes that you can explore, giving you plenty of options to choose from irrespective of whether you are going on your first hike or the tenth. From narrow pathways on rocky ledges to the beautiful countryside and routes next to glaciers, America has some of the best hiking trails in the world. One such hike is the Pacific Crest Trail, which sees thousands of hikers every year who come to hike on the diverse terrain that the trail offers. Although it is a long-distance hiking trail, you can also explore the beautiful section hikes on this trail. If you are planning to go on Pacific Crest Trail hikes, there are certain things that you need to know in order to have a stress-free and memorable hiking experience. Here are some of the things that can help you understand the area better and prepare well for your Pacific Crest Trail hikes.
Overview of the Pacific Crest Trail
Stretching around 2,650 miles (4,265 kilometers) from the Mexican border to Canada, the Pacific Crest Trail goes through the hot deserts of California, the beautiful snow-capped mountains in Sierra Nevada, the volcanic landscape of Oregon, and the lush forests in Washington. With such variety in its terrain, the Pacific Crest Trail is almost paradise for serious hikers who are always on the lookout for a new challenge. At the same time, you can go on Pacific Crest Trail hikes even if you are an amateur hiker, as a number of day hikes and shorter sections offer plenty of opportunities to explore the area without having to disappear for months at a time. However, for those planning a thru-hike or longer Pacific Crest Trail hikes, there’s a lot of preparation, endurance and expertise that these hikes require. Every year, the Pacific Crest Trail Association issues approximately 1,000 permits to hikers who plan Pacific Crest Trail hikes longer than 500 miles. Good research and proper planning are a must before starting out on longer Pacific Crest Trail hikes, without which completing the hike can be a nearly-impossible task. If you are thinking about going on Pacific Crest Trail hikes, you can choose the distance you want to hike depending on your skill level. However, you will need to prepare well for the trip so as to avoid unwanted situations when you are out exploring the diverse terrain of this amazing trail.
Best time of the year to go on Pacific Crest Trail hikes
If you are planning a day hike or Pacific Crest Trail hikes that are of short distances, you have more flexibility for scheduling your hike as compared to thru-hikers. You can choose to go on Pacific Crest Trail hikes in the off-peak season and discover varied delights such as a beautiful autumn afternoon in Sierra Nevada and the enchanting early blooms at the onset of summer along a Cascades ridgeline. If you are going hiking in the winter, you can snowshoe in the High Sierras and Cascades for a lovely winter Pacific Crest Trail hikes experience. However, for thru-hikers, the entire hike can last for a period of 5-6 months, so you will need to take into consideration different weather issues at different places along the trail. Most thru-hikers prefer to hike south to north, starting at the Mexican point in April and aiming to finish hiking the trail on the British Columbia border by September. Before you start your Pacific Crest Trail hikes, ensure that you know how different seasons will impact the weather and accessibility at various points of the trail, and the weather issues that might crop up during different years.
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