Seven Must-Stop And See Locations While Thru-Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail

The Pacific Crest Trail runs 2,650 miles from Mexico to Canada and boasts an incredible variety of landscapes. Almost every day thru-hikers enter a new environment and experience the stunning natural diversity that exists. From the dry and windy deserts of Southern California to the lush and forested slopes of Washington’s North Cascades and with elevations ranging from just above sea level to over 13,000 feet, the PCT affords hikers the opportunity to see some of America’s most breathtaking landscapes. Below are seven of those panoramas that you do not want to miss.


1. Desolation Wilderness

Just west of Lake Tahoe the PCT passes through one of Northern California’s most ethereal landscapes. Aptly named and situated in the El Dorado National Forest, this landscape of alpine lakes and glacier-scarred rock is the where the granitic Sierra Nevada transitions towards the volcanic Cascade mountain range. It’s open, sun-exposed, and rugged, but the beauty doesn’t disappoint. Lake Aloha is one of the area’s most picturesque but every few miles the trail seems to skirt lake after lake as the barren rocks give way to wildflowers and lush, old growth forest.

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