[pct-l] Planning first solo PCT hike

Eric Lee saintgimp at hotmail.com
Sun May 23 19:53:16 CDT 2010

Grete wrote:
Basically what I'm looking for is a little reassurance from this community
that a gun is unnecessary.  I'm hoping that I will meet plenty of people
along the way and won't be hiking great distances by myself.  I'm looking
for any advice from people who know because they do! Thanks- Happy trails to

Just to add my voice in agreement, no, a gun is not necessary at all.

While hiking is generally a very safe activity (arguably safer than
careening around on highways at 75 miles per hour), there are many ways in
which you could be seriously injured or killed while on the trail.  Here's
the thing, though; most of those scenarios involve you making poor choices
in regard to how you deal with weather, navigation, steep hillsides/cliffs,
water, and automobiles.  The life-threatening scenarios in which a gun would
actually save you are so few and so rare as to be virtually impossible to
occur.  Anyone who thinks differently has been watching too many ridiculous
action movies.

Those rare situations where a gun might help are precisely those situations
where you're probably going to be caught completely unaware and wouldn't
have time to use it anyway.  If you're aware of a problem ahead of time then
it's usually easier and safer to disengage and avoid it.  A gun is only
useful if you're actively trying to get into trouble in the first place.

Bottom line: by far the most dangerous thing you'll face on the trail is
your own poor judgment.


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