A Sense of Direction

The Pacific Northwest Trail is unlike any other long distance trail. It’s founder, Ron Strickland has been developing it since the 1970‘s but it was only established as a National Scenic Trail in 2009. The trail is still very unknown and unestablished. Many local residents don’t even know that it passes through their backyard.

 

In 2015 the PNT saw more than double the number of thru hikers it has seen in past years, but that number still only comes to somewhere between 35-75 hikers. The Appalachian Trail sees about 3000 thru hikers annually now and the Pacific Crest Trail sees about 2000.

 

Most hikers begin the PNT at the eastern terminus at Chief Mountain in Glacier National Park in Montana. Hugging the Canadian border, the route takes us through the panhandle of Idaho, then across the entire state of Washington. 1200 miles later we arrive at the western terminus of Cape Alava, the western most point of the contiguous United States.

 

Trail conditions can range from perfect tread to thorny bushwhacks to highway walking in just a few miles. Navigation can be very frustrating at times. But all the aspects that make the PNT more difficult than other trails also make it more adventurous. A thru hike on the PNT is not just a very long walk through the mountains, it is an exploration into the unknown.

 

This is the first documentary about the Pacific Northwest Trail and I am very excited to share this incredible experience with more people. I expect its popularity will soar in the next few years so hike it while you can before it gets too crowded!