For Bothell backpacker, Pacific Crest Trail is a multi-year adventure

Liz Fallin of Bothell grew up spending time outdoors: hiking, sailing, skiing. Her parents were members of The Mountaineers and the fondness for being outside was passed along.

Fallin has two sons, ages 18 and 13. She said she has recently started hiking more, now that her sons are older. She balances her hiking goals with her responsibilities to her sons (and her over-50 knees).

Fallin has been hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in sections. She was first inspired to really try the trail in 2012. While at Snoqualmie Pass, she came across a number of through hikers and she knew she wanted to get out on the trail herself.

This year, Fallin’s plan was to hike from Mount Adams to the Canadian border. Wildfires forced her to adjust her plans, but she still got in more than three weeks and 250 miles on the trail. She went from near Mount Adams to Lake Sally Ann, about 30 miles north of Stevens Pass, this summer.

She’s done most of the trail in Washington. She’s looking forward to returning to the north end of the trail.

Favorite piece of gear: Her trekking poles. The kind with flick-locks, not twist locks.

A bit of advice: Fallin wants women to know that they can absolutely get out and hike and backpack, and that they can go alone, if that’s what the want to do.

“It’s really important to me to see women of all ages get out on the trail. I would love to just stand up and wave the flag and say, ‘You can do this!’”

Favorite trail food: “A Snickers is a beautiful thing. The world revolves around Snickers.”

Trail name: Rest Step. A rest step is a handy technique, popular with mountaineers, that makes it easier to climb a relentless hill.

Author’s note: I met Liz at the Dinsmores’ Hiker Haven up in Baring. She was a kick to chat with. She’s super enthusiastic about the trail. As a mom myself, I’m always happy to hear the stories of how parents balance parenting with their desire for solitude and wilderness. Read more about Liz at her blog.

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