I always believed that in order to be a triple crowner of hiking, you would be required to thru hike all three major national scenic trails: the Appalachian Trail (AT), the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), and the Continental Divide Trail (CDT). Although I completed the AT in its entirety, my health didn’t allow me to hike it all in one shot. When I was unable to thru hike on my second try, my heart was crushed, thinking that I would have to get my health on track and make a third attempt with the possibility of yet another Appalachian Fail.
Reading the Fine Print
While skimming through the vlogger world of YouTube, I stumbled upon a hiker who, like me, didn’t complete the AT in one go, but had aspired to one day be a triple crowner after completing the PCT. This left me baffled and determined to get answers to see if this hiker was mistaken, or if I had been the one confused after all these years. According to the presenter of the award, the American Long Distance Hiking Association (ALDHA) -West, the triple crown is awarded to, “those individuals who have hiked, in their entirety, the complete lengths of the Appalachian Trail, The Continental Divide Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail.” Whether or not it was done in sections or by hiking thru is irrelevant. In short, it’s still on!
My bone density status is still pending so for now, I’m just going to stick to “shorter” long distance hikes. However I do plan on hiking the entire length of both the PCT and CDT some day. I’ve put a lot of thought into trying to devise a plan, and to determine what trail(s) I want to jot off the “Tread List” first. There are truly so many to choose from, so it was hard to plan out where to even begin! Let’s just say that there’s a loose plan that’s about to unravel real soon and that we’re planning on bagging some peaks as well. Stay tuned ya’ll!