A Walk in the (Jefferson) Park

Desolation around Jefferson

In September of 2015, I found my days on the Pacific Crest Trail winding to a close. I’d spent the previous two and a half months picking up the pieces of what was supposed to be a continuous 2663 mile hike from Mexico to Canada, but was derailed by a stress fracture after less than a quarter of that. After recovering from my injury, I pushed to return to the trail, at first attempting a southbound hike from the Canadian border, then settling on a more piecemeal approach, targeting specific sections of the Trail that I’d wanted to see, but didn’t get the chance to.

In September of 2015, I found my days on the Pacific Crest Trail winding to a close.  I’d spent the previous two and a half months picking up the pieces of what was supposed to be a continuous 2663 mile hike from Mexico to Canada, but was derailed by a stress fracture after less than a quarter of that.  After recovering from my injury, I pushed to return to the trail, at first attempting a southbound hike from the Canadian border, then settling on a more piecemeal approach, targeting specific sections of the Trail that I’d wanted to see, but didn’t get the chance to.
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A Taste of the Trinity Alps

At 10 hours from my previous home in Los Angeles, and tucked far enough away from I-5 to not even pass my radar, the Trinity Alps were a place I knew absolutely nothing about going into my hike on the PCT this past summer. When my thru-hike got derailed and I started looking at places I wanted to pick up before the summer ended, this section of Northern California wasn’t one I really looked too hard at, which turned out to be a huge mistake.

Trinity Alps

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In recently relocating to the Pacific Northwest, I find myself looking at new places for future explorations and wanderings.  I’ve spent a lot of time hiking the Olympics and Cascades in Washington and love them, have an insatiable desire to really explore the Columbia Gorge and Mt. Hood area, and know for a fact I need to spend like a week around Mt. Jefferson.  Above all of these places however, is the intrigue of the Trinity Alps in Northern California.

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Donner Pass Tunnel – Truckee, CA

Donner Pass Train Tunnels

Just a short distance away from the Pacific Crest Trail at Donner Pass, near Truckee, California, extends a massive abandoned train tunnel. Dating from the time of the gold rush in the late 1800’s, the tunnels now stand completely empty, extending for several miles from Truckee up to the summit of Donner Pass.

Donner Pass Train Tunnels

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Just a short distance away from the Pacific Crest Trail at Donner Pass, near Truckee, California, extends a massive abandoned train tunnel.  Dating from the time of the gold rush in the late 1800’s, the tunnels now stand completely empty, extending for several miles from Truckee up to the summit of Donner Pass.

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Grafton, Utah

Just a stone’s throw from Zion National Park lies the small ghost town of Grafton, Utah, a former settlement along the south banks of the Virgin River.

Just a stone’s throw from Zion National Park lies the small ghost town of Grafton, Utah, a former settlement along the south banks of the Virgin River.  Settled in 1859 by Mormon cotton farmers, and officially abandoned in 1944, the town never had many people, and was emblematic of the difficulties inherent to farming along the notoriously unpredictable river.  It was often racked with floods, erosion, and heavy silt accumulation during its short existence, and by the turn of the century, fewer than 100 people called it home.

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