For some people, hiking is an activity that takes them miles at a time. But for others, it's a way of life. Those who hike the Pacific Ridge Trail (PCT) fall into the latter category. The PCT is 2,653 miles long and stretches from the Mexico-California border to the point where Washington State and Canada meet. Along the way, travellers pass through deserts, climb mountains, and cross seven national parks. It's a tough journey with a low completion rate.
Only 14% of all hikers attempting a "thorough hike" successfully complete the FCT. The fame of the trek is what makes the end of 71-year-old Paat's journey all the more special. The hiker known as Paat (as most people use his nickname and also the name of the route) completed the final leg of the PCT with two young hikers, Auti and Chris.
The duo celebrated Paat's success in an Instagram post. “Few people can say that he accomplished such an amazing feat, especially at the age of 71!” they are few In the accompanying viral video, Paat approaches and touches the end of a trail sign, marvelling at reaching the end. Then the 70-year-old man starts singing. "I've been waiting... so long." he opened his mouth “To get this far. What a long way... What's here, what's here. through the desert. I walked the river and climbed the mountain to meet you. to meet you I was waiting. long time."
For anyone who has ever dreamed of hiking the PCT, Paat's feat is proof that it's not too late. Someone on Twitter said, "I've wanted to go this way for a long time," and "Now I know that even if I can't go in my 20s or 30s, I can try again and again!
Auty and Chris met Paat in Stehekin, Washington, about 80 miles from the North Terminus, an American trailhead. “We only knew him days before the finish line, but he is one of those guys. You instantly feel like you've known it all your life,” they said. “He has a heart of gold, a kind soul, unparalleled optimism and tenacity. Thanks for inspiring us, Paat!”