Very bummed to report, Eric’s PCT 2014 speed hike has come to an end. He set a distance and pace that was impressive in the early days, but due to the heat, pushing his personal limitations and his food and hydration system not working as hoped it broke his mental and physical state that is required to safely continue. His safety was always top priority and when cramps, excessive fatigue, dehydration and his body rejecting water, Cytomax replenishment or his food “goo” these were dangerous red flags. You don’t want to continue on into the desert under these conditions. He tried to slow and wait it through and recover on the trail, but his body was not on board with that idea. He is very disappointed that his training and preparation did not carry him through these early difficult days. From what I have seen, the PCT has already spoiled other hikers 2014 speed attempts as well and others did not even start the trip. It is serious business out there for certain. Eric and his family are very proud of his attempt and the inspiration this has brought to our family, the hiking community and the charity Project LIFE. None of this would even have been possible without all their support. Lots was learned to do and lots was learned what NOT to do and Eric will share this experience with others in hopes to help them avoid his mistakes and grow from his successes. This experience is not the end, it is the beginning of more hikes, more running, more exposure to the charity and basically inspiring everyone to think big, but in the end, be smart because making it safely back home is the ultimate goal.
Eric checked in from Barrel Springs. The first couple days were good, but the last two days have been grueling. His usual training food and drink are not working very well out there. He is unable to stomach the “food” and the flavored Cytomax tastes nasty now, especially when it is about 100 degree temp. Not going down very well if at all. He does have water at Barrel Springs and is re hydrating with water, but hard to do when your body has already taken the beating from lots of mileage, loss of appetite and the heat. He knew this was not going to easy, but really bummed the fuel he trained with at home and what he desperately needs to make the mileage stinks out here. This is the real deal and no amount of mental or physical training can prepare you for the punishing trail and the conditions out there. He is evaluating his situation and seeing how he can adjust to it and give his body what it needs right now. Rash, soreness and cramps… not fun. Will check in later.
Eric checked in yesterday when he was resting and getting some water at Rodriguez Jeep Rd water tank. His first day was 44.5 miles. He was hoping to leave Rodriguez Jeep Rd. and round Granite Mt. and settle into Scissor Crossing for the night. He has stopped for some much needed rest and refueling and then off again. He is hoping to settle into a pattern of not walking too late into the night and then rising earlier to hit the trail pre dawn. Hard to get up early if you walk too late into the night. It’s all about pushing yourself to the limit, but allowing that much needed time to rest, recover, rehydrate and refuel before setting out again. Good luck Eric!
Eric was dropped off at Campo this morning and he began his PCT speed hiking journey. With eyes full of tears and a heavy heart he bid farewell to his wife and kids. The excitement and preparation for this trip kicked in and he set off at 8:00 AM. His spirits were good, pack MUCH lighter than his trek last summer as “Hundy”. Good luck on day one Eric, may your first day be a good one…50 miles…Mt. Laguna…