Thru-Hikers Reach An Impasse From Government Shutdown

Oct 11, 2013

For months hikers have been traversing the Pacific Crest Trail. The trail passes through desert and mountain landscapes from Mexico to Canada. Now, these long distance hikers are facing a trip cut short as they near the end of their journey. And it’s because of the government shutdown.

Since April, Marijke Weaver and her husband have been hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. They’ve walked for almost 2,500 miles so far. They have five more days of hiking before they get to the North Cascades National Park. But like all national parks and monuments, it’s been closed by the government shutdown.

Weaver: “We’ll cross our fingers that the government’s reopened. And if they haven’t, then we’ll look at alternate routes and see if there’s other things we can do, or if it’s at that point that that’s the obstacle we can’t get through.”

Closures aren’t unheard of along the Pacific Crest Trail – usually because of wildfires. But there have never been so many closed all at once. Some thru-hikers have resorted to walking along the highway to finish their journey. Weaver and her husband still have 180 miles and a national park to go.

Copyright 2013 Northwest Public Radio