Talk:Pacific Crest Trail

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I have added the section headings History, Notable Hikers, and Equestrian Use. I believe this added structure will help build this article. Please share any thoughts on additional section headings you feel would be appropriate, or if you think any of the section headings are not appropriate. William.j.blackman (talkcontribs) 03:36, 30 March 2010

Good job adding the section headings, a good step to adding to the comprehensiveness of the article. Perhaps adding a "Low Impact Hiking" heading and defining it within would also aid in providing the article with more content. User:Ghoststory25 Ghoststory25 (talk) 01:21, 1 April 2010 (UTC)Jerry Fodness 8:20pm, 31 March 2010

Martin Papendick[edit] (talk · contribs · WHOIS) added the following content recently.

In 1952, Martin Papendick, may have been the first person to hike a rough estimate of the current trail, from north to south. His account, published in a short article in Appalachia magazine[1] is barely sufficient to convince the reader that he actually did walk all of the way from Canada to Mexico. He never sought any notoriety for this.

I removed it with the edit summary "Removed Papendick content; the source is obscure (no publisher or location, year of publication is questioned)" and cited WP:V and WP:RS. In September 2006, another anon added similar content.[1] It was removed immediately with the edit summary, "revert unsourced and carelessly formatted additions...". A discussion of this content may be found at[2][3] In the talk page archives, some have suggested that too much weight was given to the through-hiking section. On occasion, claims of priority have been disputed. Wikipedia guidelines and policies require that content be well-sourced and notable. Walter Siegmund (talk) 23:49, 29 March 2010 (UTC)

I have not inserted information about Martin Papendick, but I think it is fair to state that Papendick's accomplishment has been cited in the official PCTA Guide books.[4] Furthermore, he his also listed on the PCTA website in their thru-hikers by year listing.[5]
As I see it, it is a matter of hiker purism as to whether or not Papendick's hike should be counted as the first hike of the Pacific Crest Trail. Perhaps the official recognition of the Pacific Crest Trail Association should be a satisfactory determination. Perhaps something about Papendick can be entered into the Notable hikers section. Toomuchhiking (talk) 07:11, 18 April 2011 (UTC)


The article and related map indicate that the trail crosses into Canada in BC, so I added the relevant categories. In my haste I neglected to add an edit summary, so I am adding it here. AlaskaMike (talk) 18:28, 26 January 2011 (UTC)


Make more sense to put the images in a gallery? They are arranged already sort of like a gallery. Seems to me it would look better to use the gallery box if they're all going to be arranged together like that. MDuchek (talk) 13:11, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

The images are near the wikilinks that are ordered from south to north: they may be helpful for a reader who wants to visualize the terrain that the trail passes through. —hike395 (talk) 14:33, 4 March 2011 (UTC)
OK I got it I guess that makes sense. MDuchek (talk) 17:37, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

Thru hiking?[edit]

Does it need to be in this article? The section seems to be more about thru hiking in general than about thru hiking the PCT. Perhaps a separate article about thru hiking is in order, with the present section reduced to discussions about thru hiking on the PCT (length of time involved, etc.). (talk) 06:27, 3 October 2011 (UTC)

I agree with the above, as well as that the sections on hiking, if present, should be greatly diminished and moved to the bottom of the article. This is an article about the trail itself; hiking this trail specifically may warrant its own entry, but it doesn't belong at the top of the this one. (talk) 14:50, 26 March 2012 (UTC)

Notable People[edit]

I just heard about the Wild book. I think it deserves a mention since it's all about the trail (and her on it). If there get to be so many books written about PCT journeys. then maybe we can just list them at the bottom. But for now I thought this warranted at least some mention. Kristinwt (talk) 04:03, 6 September 2012 (UTC)

I have a problem with this. Is Ms. Strayed notable because she walked the trail, or because she wrote a book? Other people have done both of these things and are not listed here. I have completely removed her from the "notable people" section, since if she is notable then we would be inclined to list everyone else who fits these categories. Also, her inclusion seems to be advertising; she is selling this book. -- (talk) 14:14, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
She is notable because she wrote a #1 New York Times Best Seller about the trail, with multiple reviews: [6],[7],[8],[9]. I think that fulfills WP:AUTHOR. —hike395 (talk) 17:11, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
 Comment: If she is the first woman to hike the trail alone that would be a strong argument to include her as a notable in the article; otherwise I'm doubtful that she's notable in this context. A query on Amazon for "pacific crest trail" returns over 1,500 book hits; even heavily discounting that number for variations leaves a large number of books about the PCT; many of those authors will satisfy notability requirements.
SBaker43 (talk) 23:49, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
How many of those 1500 books made it to the New York Times Best Seller list, let alone to the top? Amazon lists "Wild" as #539 in its Best Sellers rank, even 1 year after release. In contrast the Benedict Go guidebook is listed at #110,469; Brian Johnson's guidebook is at #272,091; and Karen Berger's guidebook is at #325,210. There's just no comparison. —hike395 (talk) 02:56, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

I was one of 2 women who hiked 800 miles of the PCT across Oregon & Washington in 1972, arriving in Canada on Sept 3. We never met Richard Watson who would have had to have passed us. We did meet Dean Johnson from Michigan who I believe was the first thru hiker of the PCT. He was followed by Wayne (don't know last name). Both would have arrived before Watson. No one we met that summer believed that Ryback did the entire trail.Cresthiker (talk) 05:10, 14 April 2013 (UTC)

New Information.[edit]

Trying to meet policy requirements (I am a noob, forgive my noobiness)

I would like to add, under the 'Future' Headline, a short sentence noting that the current ban of mountain bikes on the PCT is currently under review by the USFS...this was brought on by a group of citizens (PCT Reassessment Initiative). Here is what I tried to add: "A citizen's group named the PCT Reassessment Initiative is seeking to have the 1988 bicycle ban rescinded for all non-wilderness portions of the trail."

I had referenced the original Closure notice, and 2 letters to the USFS. Sources: [2][3][4].

I believe this to be notable in that the PCTA has publicly recognized that the action is taking place on their website on Oct 11 (

It also a prevalent topic for interested parties on multiple forums and social networking sites (I can provide links if needed)

Am i too premature in attempting to convey this? Is it worded incorrectly?

Any and all advice is appreciated Nick Thelen (talk) 22:11, 30 October 2012 (UTC)

You need to provide reliable third-party sources. Websites by the "citizen's group" don't meet the criteria. 2001:558:6045:A0:391F:B005:179D:8DD9 (talk) 22:20, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
Agreed. Coverage by peer-reviewed media would go a long way to demonstrate general notability. Also, items appearing in the Federal Register or published on websites of the Forest Service, BLM, NPS, etc. tend to be suitable. —EncMstr (talk) 22:47, 30 October 2012 (UTC)

Update - Article by Seattle Backpacker Magazine released January 29, 2013 titled "Mountain Bikes on the PCT". Article in specific reference to the PCT Reassessment Initiative's petition to the USFS for a review of the defective 1988 closure order. There are many mentions of the PCT Reassessment Initiative's website, the letters to and from the USFS and the request for review. Here's the article for your review:

Does this qualify as a notable third party for verification? If so, may I (or yourselves) post an update to this page under 'Future' noting that the current ban of mountain bikes on the PCT is currently under review by the USFS with reference links to this article, the letter on the PCTA's site and the PCTRI's site link (

Thank you - Nick ThelenNick Thelen (talk) 20:41, 7 February 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Nick Thelen (talkcontribs) 20:20, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

I skimmed bits of the article. It does seem a thorough description of the situation. However, other than being well-written, comprehensive, and probably balanced, it seems—at best—a weak source due to a lack of fact checking and editorial review. Such articles seem to abound (roughly in order of decreasing comprehensiveness): [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16]
My opinion is that a sentence or two mentioning closure of the PCT to bicycles in 1988 and organized efforts persuading the forest service to reconsider that decision would be appropriate if cited by the best two or three of these. Others may disagree, so please hold off adding anything for a week or so. —EncMstr (talk) 00:04, 8 February 2013 (UTC)

Notable Places[edit]

I also want to suggest that the Notable Places section for California get update a bit more since it's lacking the Crystal Lake Recreation Area which is a newly re-opened restocking location. The Recreation Area was closed for 10 years following the Curve Fire and then for about 1.5 years after the site was re-opened the campground facilities lacked infrastructure for through-hikers to restock their supplies. However now hikers can restock food, drinkables, some limited medical supplies, batteries, the usual consumables yet also the Forest Service Visitor Center has begun to get staffed on weekends which has radio and telephone access to rescue, fire, everything else.

Also Little Jimmy Trail Camp located within a mile or two of Mount Baden-Powell has fresh potable water at Little Jimmy Springs which does not need to be filtered or treated in any way (at least almost everyone who utilizes the water do not bother to treat it since it comes straight out of the abutting seam in to a short metal pipe and out in to open air before plunging in to a water drum such that water collected at the pipe is never above-ground which affords bacterial infestation of the water.)

Little Jimmy's drinking water, Windy Gap Saddle, Baden-Powell are all within the footprint of Crystal Lake so I'm proposing adding Crystal Lake Recreation Area only to the Notable Places section for California. The Wiki article for the Recreation Area already offers information for PCT through hikers.

There is no official paper mail postal services offered at the Recreation Area though the caretaker there who assists in fire mitigation and other tasks leaves the mountain once or twice a week and will deposit mail left by hikers in to the Glendora Post Office.

I wanted to discuss the addition of Crystal Lake to the Notable Places section before doing it myself to see if anybody has objections. Thanks! Damotclese (talk) 18:48, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

That seems like a great addition. Can you find some reliable sources to verify it? —EncMstr (talk) 19:42, 12 August 2013 (UTC)
I have two reliable sources which can be used as suitable references. What I find is that the official USFS web site pages which mentions Crystal Lake, Windy Gap Saddle, Baden-Powell are not maintained (I emailed the USFS 3 years ago offering to update their pages and was informed "we have someone who does that" -- which was amusing since the USFS obviously does not.) I also find that the "Reserve America" web site still lists Crystal Lake as closed, and emails to that web site has resulted in no responses and no updates to their web site. In fact Caltrans listed California State Route 39 as closed for 2 years before I Emails Caltrans and got them to fix their status web page, all of which shows how rather pathetic the official agencies are at maintaining their web sites. :(
The resource that people go to for information about the Recreation Area is The Crystal Lake Web Site which gets updated properly, and here on Wikiepdia Crystal Lake Recreation Area which gets 63 visits a day. Another WP:RS would be the San Gabriel Mountains Trailbuilders web site at Here which is my responsibility to update.
What I need to do is update the Crystal Lake web site's text covering what the Visitor Center offers, and what the Trading Post offers since I see that both are incomplete. After those pages get updated, I'll add the reference to Crystal Lake Recreation Area to the Notable Places for California and see what happens. Damotclese (talk) 16:36, 13 August 2013 (UTC)

Proper name designation includes year 2000[edit]

Examining topo maps and some signs, PCT 2000 is used, and this is not covered by the page.

I took a photo of Monument 78 at the end. I should get around to uploading it. I have included it on my facebook page collection. The US PCT ends at the Border. The Canadian PCT is designate a distinctly different named trail. I want to get a Campo border first. I'm merely section hiking it. (talk) 09:21, 20 December 2014 (UTC)

It was designated PCT 2000 on the trail even in the 1970s. It never occurred to me that might be a year: I always thought it was just a trail number. Presumably there are other trails named X 2001, Y 3000, etc. —EncMstr (talk) 17:27, 20 December 2014 (UTC)
Yes, it's a trail number. See, e.g., [17], where it is listed as #2000. —hike395 (talk) 21:24, 20 December 2014 (UTC)

PCT Deaths[edit]

A bleak topic, but I felt it was important to add. Not sure if it should be under Notable hikers or its own section. Trellar (talk) 23:06, 8 May 2015 (UTC)


Through vs, thru[edit]

I hope the editor is not annoyed that I reverted the proposed change of the word "thru" to "through." The correct spelling of the word really is "through" and the spelling "thru" is considered "informal" and not, in my opinion, very encyclopedic. The informal spelling is more suitable for blogs and advertising, magazines and such.

If anyone feels strongly about using "thru" instead of "through," please revert my revert since I don't have any strong feelings either way, other than to use what's considered proper spelling where possbile. Thanks! Damotclese (talk) 16:04, 11 May 2015 (UTC)

difficulty=Easy to Strenuous[edit]

The tag difficulty=Easy to Strenuous probably meant that parts are easy, parts are difficult. Damotclese (talk) 16:11, 29 August 2016 (UTC)

Might be good to discuss proposed change[edit]

There have been a number of proposed updates concerning the fastest through time during this year, and it's difficult to know with any "official" certainty whether records have been exceeded or not, it seems that blogs and wishful thinking is applied as much as suggested updates using magazines and other sources which suggest someone has exceeded the faster through time.

It would be helpful to discuss proposed changes here first so that editors are not reverting possible legitimate citations and references. It does look like this year there are a number of contenders who might very well have exceeded records, to get those people and their times recognized, discussion here would be helpful

Revision as of 01:07, 23 September 2016 (edit) 2a02:1812:172b:5300:645f:45a8:5e99:e34b (talk) (I added a few references. In the end, the only tracking information available is the athlete's, just as for any previous record. This attempt is extremely well documented. I think the article is balanced by mentioning the debate on the record.)
Latest revision as of 06:01, 23 September 2016 (edit) (undo) (thank) Hike395 (talk | contribs) (→‎Notable hikers: statement that it is "well accepted" not supported by reliable sources, and is contradicted by trailrunner magazine)
As he followed all the official alternates and his total mileage even exceeded the standard, his record is now widely accepted as being the current FKT (Fastest Known Time) for the PCT.

The comment about "widely accepted" not being a suitable reference or citation is a good one, log book records along the trail should help to confirm, and until there is a legitimate review of the records with photocopies, perhaps, of the log entries, I think we should hold off a bit -- unless an editor wants to word the proposed change to note that the record breaking is as yet unconfirmed.Damotclese (talk) 15:55, 23 September 2016 (UTC)

Hiking records[edit]

I think incorporating speed and other kinds of records is a bad idea. Such endeavors should not receive acclaim or notoriety. If someone wants to blaze from Mexico to Canada at warp factor 9, that is their prerogative. But the PCT is not generally recognized as a race course; it is wilderness, a natural environment full of wonderful scenery, textures, scents, and sounds.

The slowly advancing "race" for youngest person to have completed the PCT means what: Increasing pressure to get a toddler to walk thousand of miles? Same goes for oldest person, the one who died of exhaustion at age 103 just as they reached the US-Canadian border?

Should the film article mention the people who have seen the most movies in one viewing session? Should the eye article mention the world champion of not blinking?

Instead, this article would be better advanced by enumerating the groups doing the most to analyze, develop, and maintain the trail. Or more details, segment by segment, about the pitch, terrain, wildlife, and climate. There are many more details about the trail itself which could/should be added. Let's try not to encourage the occasional misdirected person who ambles along on it. —EncMstr (talk) 20:19, 23 September 2016 (UTC)

 :) I have to agree with EncMstr (talk) about the PCT not being a race track, however a great many hikers and other people are very interested in records, so the information should be included in the article. This is an encyclopedia, after all, and speed times and other relevant numeric and demographic information is useful and informative.
Sectional hikers who take years to complete the trail from end to end probably do enjoy the experience more than those who attempt to "get through it" rather than those who become part of it, but I think from reading the fast-timers' blogs and magazine articles, going fast is still a very rewarding experience, it's a personal challenge for themselves, for their bodies, they exceed their own envelopes and comfort zones which adds to the environmental experience. Damotclese (talk) 16:32, 26 September 2016 (UTC)