Friday, October 2, 2015
The new book is out! And I already have updates from the field
I have not actually seen it yet (maybe arriving today?) but I feel good about it; the Mountaineers Books editors are magnificent and they saved me from plenty of embarrassing mistakes ("directional dyslexia" mostly--saying NORTH when I meant to say SOUTH, that kind of thing).
I would urge--not only for my slight financial benefit, but for your sanity--that you buy and use it if you are planning a thru-hike (rather than depending on earlier posts in this blog). I'm all about ultralight, but this is a worthwhile 9.5 ounces (and obsessives can always tear out the pages about day hikes they don't plan to take.)
I hope hikers will continue to send me updates, which I'll post here. This morning I received some trail updates from Patti Correll-Syring, who thru-hiked the entire OCT in August and early September. (In most years, October is getting a bit late to hike the OCT, but you might get away with it this year.) Here are updates (and one correction) to supplement what you'll find in the book, starting at the south end of Oregon Dunes NRA:
Horsfall Beach: The USFS campsite here that caters to ORV enthusiasts now has no potable water and porta-potties only. Bluebill Campground (also USFS) is just 0.75 miles to the east on Horsfall Road; it's clean, quiet, and has potable water and well-maintained vault toilets.
Nesika Beach: The beach must be exited at the north end; access at the south end is private and signed as such (sorry about that).
Cape Sebastian: The trail up Cape Sebastian from the north was very well maintained and clearly signed (yay!); no confusion, Patti says.
Boardman State Scenic Corridor: The trail at the very north end of Boardman (north of Arch Rock Picnic Area) has not been maintained and was very difficult to follow; you might consider staying on the highway all the way to the picnic area. Here are her comments: "A machete would have been helpful. Only indication of trail were 3 plastic red ties affixed to tree branches spaced within 20 yards of each other. Found the way with Bonnie’s trail guide, Gaia GPS app, and following what appeared to be a slight path underneath overgrown vegetation, apparently traversed by other hikers (long ago?!) Be forewarned that this stretch holds potential for injury due to overgrown thick blackberry bushes with thorns and a section with narrow, soft crumbling ledge; wear long pants and a long sleeved shirt, and be ready to extricate hundreds of burs from clothing and any exposed wool socks."
Thank you for these updates, Patti!
Posted by Bonnie Henderson at 9:07 AM