My First Thru Hike

Why do I want to hike the PCT?

When I tell people I have decided to take on this adventure, I often get asked why. It does seem a little bit crazy, and to be completely honest, I think all thru hikers are by nature a little crazy. That being said, we all have a reason to be out there.

I am still only 19 years old and graduated high school 2 years ago in 2021. I thought I knew exactly what I wanted my life to look like, and I had a plan as I always do. Then I went to college and found that I hated what I was going to school for. I needed something to give me a break, but I couldn’t just quit school to work. I needed something more.

I was talking to my friend on the phone and she mentioned doing the PCT as a goal of hers for the future. Now I had never heard of the PCT, but I was familiar with the idea of thru hiking. So I did a little research on the three main thru hikes in the U.S and was hooked. My friend and I decided that in 2023 we were going to hike the PCT. Now it’s just over a year since that decision and I’m under 30 days away from my first thru hike.

Who am I

My name is Amelia and I am a 19-year-old girl from a small town in Montana. I have been in love with the outdoors since I was young. Both my parents were very active and we frequently went backpacking, hiking, biking, and fishing. In the fall, I also enjoy hunting with my dad and my sister. During the winter you’ll catch me flying down the local ski area shredding the fresh corduroy, or plowing through the fresh powder.

As I grew up, my family hit a few rough patches which led to us losing my mom when I was 16 to cancer. She was my biggest supporter and my very best friend. After that, I truly lost myself in grief, and I put my feelings and emotions on the back burner to care for my sister and support my dad. This series of events in my life, despite being very unfortunate and sad, have led me to this amazing opportunity to hike the PCT.

Are you Excited

I’ve been getting this question a lot more now that my start date is fast approaching, and I am so excited about this adventure. How could I not be? This has been something that has been my sole focus for a year. I have put countless hours into research, and plenty of money into trying and returning gear. To say I’m excited is an understatement.

However, I am also incredibly nervous. I have never attempted anything like this in my entire life. This journey is presenting me with so many new experiences that I will learn and grow from, and it’s very overwhelming and nerve racking but in the best way. I have been Reading articles, watching videos, and really educating myself as best I can to combat my mix of emotions. So, in short yes, I’m very excited about starting my hike.

Why now

I get asked the question of why are you doing this now and honestly, why not now? There is no time like the present, and that is something that so far in my short life I have found to be so true. I’m in the middle of college and working on transferring schools, still not a hundred percent sold on my major, and I have nothing else tying me to home. This transition period in my life seemed like the perfect time to throw in a thru hike and work on my goal of triple crowning.

I will be making blog posts here and there once larger milestones on the trail happen. If you want to follow my journey a little closer, follow me on instagram, the link is below. Happy Trails!

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Comments 6

  • Jen Graham : Mar 28th

    So proud of you!!! And can’t wait to read about this “crazy” adventure.

  • Heather Rich : Mar 28th

    I’m so excited for you Amelia! This is going to be a great adventure. We will be thinking of you and waiting on updates!

  • Stephanie Dagnon : Mar 28th

    I’m so proud of you Amelia! Your mom is extremely proud of you too!

  • Elsa : Mar 28th

    Great article! Know you are an amazing person Amelia and I’m so excited for your new path. Let it be an enjoyable experience and learn and grow from it. We definitely miss you and we didn’t want you to leave us but we also don’t want to hold you back from becoming the best version of yourself. Excited to read your next update!! Keep posting and we are all so proud of you!!! Hope your able to find some prosciutto when you run into a town 🙂

  • Gretchen Hill : Mar 28th

    So proud of my beautiful sister!

  • Heather Vincent : Mar 29th

    Super proud of you Amelia & want to be here for your needs in SNOQUALMIE❤️


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