Beyond The Accursed Mountains

Having survived the Pacific Crest Trail, someone thought that it would be a good idea to embark on another adventure… So here we are again.

At some point tomorrow we will set off in a small, old, blue car. Where are we going, you ask? Well, to answer that exactly, I’d have to know myself, however the plan is to head in the general direction of Central Asia. But first things first: meet Muriel (the car). Muriel is a 24-year-old Toyota Rav 4 my Dad’s friend gave to him, and although she may be known by many names throughout the course of this journey (such as The Blue Thing), in my heart (if not anyone else’s), she will always be Muriel. Hopefully, Muriel will take us on a journey: a journey beyond the Accursed Mountains (i.e. a journey beyond Albania). To read about it visit our new blog at:

beyondtheaccursedmountains.wordpress.com

And Finally….

​In Vancouver, we spent a lot of our time eating. We managed to include Chinese, Indian, Iraqi, Pizza and the hotel’s buffet breakfast. We also went to the park to see the Totem Poles.

Before we knew it, we were on the sky train to the airport and were spending our last night with Dad before he left for a 30 hour train ride back down to Bishop.

We woke up early the next morning to go to the airport for a ridiculous 24 hour journey. First, we flew from Vancouver to Dallas then Dallas to Frankfurt and finally Frankfurt to London. 

Where we spent the night with our Auntie Tammy. We caught the train back to Matlock and got picked up by our Grandparents. 

It’s strange being home now. The adventure was amazing but now that it’s over it seems like it never happened. Walking every day was hard but it just became normal. It became life.

Thank You!

We want to say a huge THANK YOU to everybody who has been so incredibly kind and generous to us on the trail and helped to make it such an amazing experience!

Scout and Frodo

Mom’s Pie Shop

Cal Fire Inspectors Kieth and Andy

Ziggy and the Bear

Buffalo Bob

Terri in Wrightwood

Janet, Clayton and Jimmy

The Pickle People and their family

The Saufleys

Jamie at the Rock Inn

Yogi and her magic

Ice Bath for our amazing package

Willie Rodriguez

The family who bought us enormous pancakes in Said Valley

Ranger Anne at Crater Lake

Big Lake Youth Camp – especially Heidi

The Jamisons – Jo Ann , Sammy and Ben for amazing hospitality and moon cheese

John and Kris for the many calories supplied from Stahekin Bakery.

Ken, Peter and Russ for supplying curry on the trail, and so much more.

Yasmin and Satota- the best hitch EVER

All the Trail Angels who left some Magic along the trail

And to so many other people who we met along the way.

And all of our amazing Hiker friends who we met on the trail – you know who you are!!!

THANK YOU

Canada in Sight

We had a slow, uphill kind of day after leaving Snoqualmie Pass. The following day was even slower. We weren’t going to visit Spectacle Lake like everyone had told us to do because it would have meant stopping a while and going half a mile off trail. But when we saw the lake it looked very nice and very blue. The temptation was too great.  We spent the afternoon there. It turned out to be an even slower day than we thought.
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We had some big ascends and descends before we arrived at Stephens Pass. We successfully collected our box, and played some giant chess before setting off again.

A few days later, the wheather decided to turn against us.  Clouds formed and promised rain; mist swirled around us and eliminated our chance of a glimpse if Gacier Peak. What’s more, we found that a water source that we needed to fill up from for the night wasn’t there. So we had to walk back to a different one. When we arrived at the campsite, Dad went off in search of a good spot. He was gone for quite a while and we suspected that he might have vanished. We managed to find him and get in the tent before the rain began.
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At the campsite that we stayed in before Stehekin, Dad had to push over a tree so that it wouldn’t fall on us in the middle of the night. The next morning, Jack, Mum and I got a lie-in because Dad went to get the box for us. He came back with lots of bakery things John and Kris (some hikers we’d been leapfrogging on the previous few days) had kindly bought for us.
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The following night, it seemed like all of the thru-hikers had caught up with us: the campsite was very full with about eleven tents! (So obviously it wasn’t really all of the thru-hikers)

A couple of days later, when we went through Harts Pass (about 30 miles from the U.S./Canadian border) we suddenly became aware that actually we were really very close the end.

The next afternoon, we stumbled across the border. It was quite a surprise – Jack even said “What now?” As exciting as it was to have finished, it’s a shame to almost permanently leave the PCT; for our adventure to end. Despite the fact that we reached the border, we still had to walk another eight miles to civilisation because the monument was pretty much in the middle of nowhere.
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Eight miles later, we arrived at Manning Park. Because the bus from Manning Park to Vancouver was at silly o’clock – 2am – we decided to try and hitch to the next town and then get the bus to Vancouver. It wasn’t long before a car stopped for us. As it turned out, they were going all the way to Vancouver and were prepared to bring us along too! So we got a lift with Yasmin and Satota: Mary Poppins on the radio and sandwiches from the gas station.

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Posted from the wilderness using twigs and bear poo

The A-Z Hiker’s Glossary

A

– A.T: The Apalation Trail (on the east coast of the USA)

B

C

– C.D.T: The Continental Divide Trail (runs up through the middle of the USA)

– Cowboy Camping: camping without putting up a tent and just sleeping on a ground sheet. In extreme cases, a groundsheet isn’t even used.

D

– Day Hike: a walk only lasting a day.

– Day Hiker: someone who only goes for day legnth walks.

– Dirty Girls: dirty girl gaters – to put over your shoes, they stop too much muck from getting into your shoes.

E

F

– Flip-flop: when you walk the whole trail in a year. It doesn’t have to be walked in order (from North to South) or all in one block, as long as the whole trail is comleted by the end of the year.

G

H

– Hiker: someone who goes on walks for fun – it can be just lots of day walks or slightly less but longer walks

– Hiker Box: a box where hikers can leave the things (like equipment and food) that they don’t want so that other hikers can take them if they want.

– Hiker Brick: an interesting mixture made from packet noodles and instant mash potato.

– Hiker Lie In: any time after 7am.

– Hiker Midnight: when it gets dark.

– Hiker Season: the only time of the year when you can shoot hikers. Or, the time of the hear when the big group of hikers arrives at a certain town so Hiker Season is at different times for different places.

– Hiker Soup: a concoction created when too many dirty hikers have been sitting in a hot tub.

– Hiker Tuxedo: wearing only rainclothes because everything else is in the laundry.

I

J

K

L

– Leapfrog: when two or more hikers keep overtaking and re-overtaking each other.

M

N

– Nero Day: nearly a zero day – a day with a little but not a lot of walking.

– Night Hike: when you walk at night. Extreme cases of Night Hikers become nocturnal.

– Nobo: Northbound, going North up the Trail.

O

P

– P.C.T: The Pacific Crest Trail (on the West coast)

Q

R

– Resupply: when hikers buy more food for the next section.

– Resupply box: when hikers receive a box sent via the post full of Resupply food.

S

– Section Hike: to walk part of a trail not all of it but much more than a day hike.

– Section Hiker: someone who only walks sections of a trail at a time.

– Slackpack: when you leave most of your stuff and your rucksack with a hotel/friends/family/a trail angel and you walk somewhere that will somehow get you back to your stuff.

– Switchbacks: where the trail does lots of zig-zags, usually up a mountain.

– Sobo: Southbound, heading South down the trail.

T

– Thru-Hike: to walk the whole of a trail.

– Thru-Hiker: someone who has walked the whole of a trail.

– Trail Angel: a person who is kind and generous to hikers.

– Trail Magic: when trail angels give hikers ‘treats’ like fizzy drinks and sweets.

– Trail Name: a nickname given by another hiker, usually based on something you personally have done or do.

-Trail Family: the group of people a hiker hikes and camps with when they have failed go bring their real family. Sometimes the people meet on the trail.

U

V

W

– Water Cache: where somebody has left bottles of water for hikers to use.

X

Y

– Yogi: when you ask people, usually day hikers, for spare things

– Yo-Yo: when you hike the whole Trail, get to the end, then go back again

Z

– Zero Day: a day with no walking.

Posted from the wilderness using twigs and bear poo