Pacific Crest Trail at Timberline Lodge

Location: Timberline Lodge, Mt. Hood, Oregon

Level: easy to Zig Zag Canyon / Beginner Level: doable
Round trip/Gain: 4.4 miles/500 ft
Type: round trip
Permit: n/a

True story: this was my first time at the Timberline Lodge in my fourteen years of living in Portland. I’d driven up there a few times for the view, but never actually entered the lodge or hiked on the trails. I’m really not trying to be a kill joy, it was cool, but I think the best part was all of the stinky PCT hikers, stuffed from the brunch buffet, stretched out in every possible direction looking so happy.

There were tons of little trails spurring off from the lodge, so I couldn’t really tell which way to the PCT, but then I realized they all essentially braided together after a hundred yards or so.

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Timberline Lodge from the PCT. Mt. Jefferson in the distance.

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Enchanted Valley Trail to Pony Bridge

Location: Quinault, Olympic National Park, Washington

Level: easy / Beginner Level: challenging
Round trip/Gain: 5 miles/500ft
Type: round trip
Permit: Olympic National Park entrance fee or America the Beautiful pass

I guess all trails in ONP are big backpacking trails and I’m super bummed that another summer has gone by where I couldn’t get my shit together in time to take my first backpacking trip. People make it look so easy, but I literally could not afford to A: get gear and B: take off enough time. I only went car camping once! It is really hard to not feel woe-is-me, but what the fuck am I doing wrong?!?!?! (Do not answer this. You don’t know about my life and yes, I am being super defensive.)

A month prior, I’d stayed in Quinault for a modeling job for Columbia Sportswear (lolz, I’m serious and it wasn’t nearly as glamorous as it sounds). The shoot happened at nearby Graves Creek campground, which is a beautiful overgrown, mossy forest next to milky turquoise Graves Creek and the Enchanted Valley trailhead. It put a bug in my ear and I was dying to go back.

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Ozette Triangle / Cape Alava Loop

Location: Olympic National Park, Washington

Level: Moderate
Round trip/Gain: 9.2 miles/100ft
Type: Loop
Permit: Olympic National Park entrance fee or America the Beautiful pass

This trail is so cool! It’s a perfect triangle 3x3x3 (& some change) miles. 6 miles of boardwalk trail through forest and meadows and a sandy, rocky ocean-side stretch. It’s mostly flat, but the sand section, with log scrambles, killed my feet. I saw a lot of people suffering through it.

Another popular backpacking trail, ideal for a new backpacker. I definitely wanted to post-up after the sand part. There are petroglyphs, too! Of vulvas!

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Hoh River Trail (& Hall of Mosses)

Location: Hoh Rainforest, Olympic National Park, Washington

Level: easy / Beginner Level: challenging
Round trip/Gain: 5.8 miles/300-ish ft
Type: round trip
Permit: Olympic National Park entrance fee or America the Beautiful pass

Brie and I arrived after about four hours of sleep and four hours of driving. I know how popular this place is and I thought I was ready for the onslaught, but my depleted resources could hardly handle the amount of people around the ranger station, especially on the Hall of Mosses trail which we did first as it’s right next to the Hoh River trailhead.

The Hall of Mosses is famous for a reason. It’s less than a mile, mostly flat and while I live in mossy, wet rain forested Portland, it truly is remarkable.

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Sexy trees

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Popaganda Podcast | Bitch Media

PopagandaBitchMagazineBeachBodiesI recently had the honor of guesting on Bitch Media’s podcast, Popaganda. Download on iTunes or listen on Soundcloud.

Have you ever felt cool? This makes me feel really cool! And I know I’m not supposed to say that because it makes me totally uncool, but like, you know how I do. I’ve had few magazine subscriptions in my life and Bitch Magazine is one of them. I wish I could tell Baby Adult Jenny that one day she’d get to do this really cool thing and she’d probably say, “what the fuck is a podcast?” It’s gonna be alright, Baby Adult Jenny. It’s gonna be alright.

I am so grateful for these amazing opportunities coming my way. Thanks for listening, babes! Thanks for being a part of the damn thang ❤

Found

I was an indoor kid, a city kid, and I remained so into my adulthood. I didn’t even think about the outdoors. In the first six years I lived in Portland, Oregon, the most outdoorsy thing I ever did was drive up to the famous Multnomah Falls. Once. I struggled with PTSD, depression, self-hate and self-medicating. Being wasted all of the time was a huge PAUSE button on my life and as the years ticked on, I grew more confused about my place in the world; who I was, where I belonged, what I wanted.

Five-and-a-half years ago, I met my partner and one of our first dates was a hike. I didn’t know “how” to hike or what to wear (photo on the right!). I was self-conscious of my heavy breathing and sweating, but when we reached the top of the hill, I felt something bloom, a reckoning. Shortly after, hiking became the thing I did instead of filling the void with substance abuse and distractions. When I hiked, I felt connection. Connection to my body, earth, nature, my truth. It became a symbol for all I needed in my life: one-step-at-a-time thinking, forward progression as a metaphor, learning from the pain and discomfort and how to push through it productively.

The trail couldn’t tell me what to do with my life, but it’s lessons led me to connecting and building community with other unlikely outdoorspeople. In turn, leading to new, exciting opportunities. It feels like a future. It feels like being found. Where might the trail lead you?

#sponsored #REI #ForceOfNature #optoutside

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Hike Trails, Get Money

I sort of hinted at this a couple of months ago, but it is finally official: REI got wind of me and I’ve been contracted to essentially keep doing what I do. They aren’t asking me to sell a product or be anything other than what I am, an unlikely outdoorsperson. For the next six months, you will very occasionally see that some of my posts are sponsored. They are also sponsoring the two meet-ups I posted about recently on Instagram.

As many of you know, REI, specifically with their #ForceOfNature campaign is making attempts to interrupt the common outdoors narrative. Obviously, there is so much work to be done and some of us have been doing it for awhile already, but this is a big deal. I’m a thirty-five-year-old, fat, queer, high school drop out who started hiking five years ago. When have you ever seen someone like me featured in the mainstream?

I am so grateful for this opportunity to share my experience and connect with all of you in the ways that we do. I feel like so many of my dreams are clicking into place. I’ve missed out on a lot of experiences and opportunities my peers have had due to lack of resources and access.

This may not be the most exciting news to my anti-capitalist, punk, queer communities, but I do hope you’ll support your girl in getting paid. I’m not making the big bucks, so don’t get it twisted. This will essentially help me to take a couple days off a month to focus solely on writing and adventuring and building community based on diversifying the outdoors. I still need a lot of help, financially, to keep doing all of this, so if you were thinking about donating to my patreon or paypal, I can absolutely use it. No pressure, I’ll stop touting it all of the time soon. 5% of monthly donations are donated to the Trans Assistance Project.

Thank you for your continued support!