I technically started training for the Continental Divide Trail the weekend of the time change. I’ve been averaging at least 60hrs of work each week with the combination of daily substitute teaching and babysitting/nannying after school and on weekends. Many people wonder how I can afford to take off for 5 months. I figure that if I live simply, and spend a year and a half working as much as possible, it will average out when I take 5 months off. It is a sacrifice to work so much, but I like earning the hike that way and feel like I’ll appreciate it that much more when I get out there.

As for the training, I’ve been posting pictures of the training hikes I’ve been able to do each weekend on my Wired Facebook Page. It has been really great to be able to share things easily through the fb page when I don’t have time to write a whole blog post, so don’t forget to “like” it so you can get my updates in your feed. I’m doing much less training than I did before the PCT. I feel like I do enough recreational hiking and backpacking that my body seems to have adjusted and maintained muscle memory for its new role as a pack mule. My main fear is developing shin splints because those can end a hike and I’m prone to them. My goal is to put in some long miles with a weighted pack and do some back-to-back days with big miles if my schedule allows. I tend to only have Sundays off, so rain or shine, I’ll be getting out there. Here are some of the hikes I’ve done in the last few weeks.

I did a great off trail hike with two of my friends that let me practice a bit with the GPS I’ll be using on the CDT. It was along an old abandoned Waterworks that was created in 1915. Hidden waterfalls, old blasted tunnels, decaying waterworks machinery, and rotting bridges. Adventure!

My first long training hike was a 17 mile long day in the Columbia Gorge that included doing a steep scramble up to Munra Point with two of my friends. Possibly my favorite destination in the Gorge.

Munra Point

Elowah Falls
The next weekend I did a much needed long solo day in cold rain/sleet/snow in the Gorge. Good training to “Embrace the Brutality”
Multnomah Falls
Ponytail Falls

Snow at the higher elevation.

This most recent weekend was my only weekend with two full days off. I did a local trail called the Wilson River Trail that is 20.6mi long. Then, the next morning I did a grueling 12mi loop that included a summit of Kings Mtn and was mostly in deep unbroken snow…perfect practice for conditions I expect to encounter on the CDT.

Made it to the top.
I also got to test out the possible colors for the CDT hike. I’ve decided to keep my lucky wired green and navy, but to invert the colors from the PCT hike.

Lovin’ the forest greens!

The Queen at the top of Kings Mtn:)

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