Hello Hello!

I’m hitting the trail in a month, and I figured I would introduce myself!

Hi all!

My name is Eva, and I am an aspiring NOBO PCT thru-hiker. I’ll be setting out on trail in just a month and I’m anxious and excited and (mostly) ready to go!

I’m a student at Rutgers University pursuing majors in Computer Science and Mathematics/Statistics. Though classwork requires a lot of time indoors staring at screens, I really love being outside and try to make time for it however I can.

Hiking up Middle Teton in Grand Teton National Park in summer 2023

I’ve always enjoyed putting together crazy schemes, and after hearing about the PCT, I knew this was something I wanted to make happen. With the constraints of school and other plans, and the fact that I don’t want to take a gap semester, I’m attempting to thru-hike the PCT between semesters. This means leaving immediately after finals in May and returning (hopefully…) before the first day of classes in the very beginning of September. While I hope to finish the trail, my first priority is enjoying the adventure that is hiking the PCT. Though that might mean I can’t complete the trail within the time frame specified, I really just want to appreciate the experience for what it ends up being.

Something that people are fond of saying about thru-hikes is that they will be the adventure of a lifetime. Though I hope to have many other adventures in mine, I intend to make the most of this one. I want to appreciate every day on trail, and one way I plan on doing that is keeping a daily journal, so I’m looking forward to maintaining this blog as a way to keep myself accountable to this goal.

Why am I taking a summer off to hike the PCT?

On the track that I hope to be on with my post-graduation plans, it would make the most sense (academically, financially, and in pretty much every way) for me to pursue a summer research or internship opportunity. So why am I choosing to hike the PCT instead?

I have struggled with this question for a while now. My instinctual, flippant response is “because I can.” I can do a lot of things — this response doesn’t give the issue the full weight it deserves. First, I want to acknowledge the privilege I have to even consider a thru. Being in a place where I can plan on leaving the “real world” to hike for four months is not something I take lightly.

Thinking about it more deeply, I came up with a few reasons for why I want to thru-hike the PCT.

  1. Simply put, I just love being outside. At the end of the day, I think this is the most basic thing driving anyone considering a thru. I was drawn to the PCT specifically because of the widely varied terrain it passes through and because of the amazing mountain ranges it encompasses.

    From the summit of South Sister in summer 2023

  2. I love hiking and being active in general. I love the clarity that I feel after a long hike or a good run. The thought of spending all day every day hiking for months sounds somewhat scary but also like a lot of fun.
  3. I like doing hard things. I’m always looking for the next thing to challenge me whether it be signing up for and running my first ultra last fall or picking up a new sport (rock climbing). Some might say I’m addicted to the endorphins, but I like the excitement of embarking on a challenge that pushes the limits of what I think I can do.

    The SRT 30 mile trail run in September 2023

  4. I want to experience the world in a different way. I’m curious and excited to undergo the unique challenges and joys of being a thru-hiker. I know what it’s like to go on short backpacking trips and day hikes, but what’s it like when you can’t go home to your soft bed and indoor plumbing? How will it change my experience? What will I get out of this experience because of the challenges intrinsic in thru-hiking?
  5. I want to meet people on trail. What drives others to pursue this journey? What sacrifices have they made to be here, and what pushes them to continue? In my experiences, hard hikes are made infinitely better by good company, and I hope to find lots of it on the PCT.

There’s a million other small reasons contributing to why I’m doing this thru-hike, but those are the major ones.

In my next post, I’ll talk about my gear and what I’m doing (physically, mentally, etc.) to prepare for the hike!


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Comments 5

  • Arnold : Apr 11th

    You’ve got this Ava!

  • Angela Zhou : Apr 11th

    Rally Evaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

  • anneliese : Apr 11th

    YESS EVA PCT BLOG!!! I’m so excited to read about your travels

  • Nami : Apr 12th


  • Leather stone and bone : Apr 13th

    Hello Eva

    I have been backpacking for over 60 years. Long before all the new gear. My Area on the PCT is between Yosemite and Sequoia national park. Let me know how things are going. When you get close to my area. Give me a heads.


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