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  1. #1
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    Default PCTA 2019 Permits

    PCTA released the first batch of NOBO permits for 2019 yesterday, with another 15 set for release in January. Out of curiosity, I looked at the system today and was astounded that all days from February 28 through May 25 are fully booked! And no doubt they will fill to the maximum 50 quota when the second set of permits are released in January. That's nearly three solid months of 50 starts per day from the Mexican border with some folks starting so early that they could arrive at Kennedy Meadows in early to mid April, fully two months before the traditional Sierra Nevada start. And some folks at the tail end, unless they are fast hikers, will face a lot of desert heat.

    I had my opportunity in 2015 and hiked the first 1/3 of the trail before having to get off and may not have an opportunity for a long thru for many years now ... I wonder what the situation will look like the next time I can make an attempt. I almost certainly will plan a SOBO when the time comes. This is nuts...
    HST/JMT August 2016
    TMB/Alps Sept 2015
    PCT Mile 0-857 - Apr/May 2015
    Foothills Trail Feb 2015
    Colorado Trail Aug 2014
    AT: Rockfish Gap to Boiling Springs 2014
    John Muir Trail Aug/Sept 2013

  2. #2

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    Imagine there was no quota, and nearly 400 people show up in places like Agua Dulce over a 3-day period, or 100 people try to camp at Hauser on Day 1.

  3. #3
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Somebody put a web cam at the southern monument. I want to see the 50 folks everyday for 3 months.
    Wayne

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by AllDownhillFromHere View Post
    Imagine there was no quota, and nearly 400 people show up in places like Agua Dulce over a 3-day period, or 100 people try to camp at Hauser on Day 1.
    That was already CLOSE to occurring 10 yrs ago.

    Thank you to the PCTA and the Western Land MNGRS for taking thru hiker quota steps! They had the foresight and courage to not let thru hike convenience madness take over. Thru hiker quotas will be required of that whiteblazed signed trail near you not too far in the future. It's inevitable.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Somebody put a web cam at the southern monument. I want to see the 50 folks everyday for 3 months.
    Wayne
    The border wall with imagery is there already. It's not so much focused on PCT NOBO's though.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    That was already CLOSE to occurring 10 yrs ago.
    Thru hiker quotas will be required of that whiteblazed signed trail near you not too far in the future. It's inevitable.
    I believe Andrew Downs from the ATC touched on this recently in his interview with Backpacker Radio. Also the possibility of mandatory bear cans. Obviously no dates set.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crushed Grapes View Post
    I believe Andrew Downs from the ATC touched on this recently in his interview with Backpacker Radio. Also the possibility of mandatory bear cans. Obviously no dates set.
    Mandatory bear cans is a terrible idea. Because so much of the trail is not bear country, people simply won't do it, and then you'll have a population of "criminals" on the trail, further increasing the "us vs. them" mentality already there.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Somebody put a web cam at the southern monument. I want to see the 50 folks everyday for 3 months.
    Wayne
    It is doubtful that 50/day actually will start. Since permits are issued in November and January and most people don't start walking for a few more months, plans change and people will bail before they even start, and not everyone will cancel their permits. Still, it is staggering to think that 4500+ people will have permits over a three month period. If even half of those actually start, the trail would be quite crowded for the first few hundred miles until more people drop out.

    I'm most concerned about the early March starts that will reach KM by mid April. That's a crazy early time to start and requires mountaineering skills that almost no thrus have. Maybe they are hoping for a very low snow year or plan to take a few weeks off trail? If so, there might be a huge congestion at KM in early June comprised of people who had late April/early May starts and people who went off trail and came back. The Sierra land management agencies would love that.

  9. #9

    Default The PCTA issued permit is not a requirement, regardless of how bad you want it to be

    "Do I need a permit to walk down to the post office? No, but I better get one anyway." That is the perception the mob is trying to create and sell in the face of reality.

    There are ZERO restrictions on hiking the first 700 miles of trail. Dispersed camping requires a permit in a short 25 mile section only. Use one of several camp grounds in that section, with or without a permit, and you exceed the intent and spirit of that restriction.

    The PCTA issued permit is a convenience only and always has been. Getting individual permits is equivalent to the single permit.

    The FS quota restricts the number of permits issued per day, NOT on when a person can start. You don't need a permit in the first 700 miles!


    Read more about it: https://www.postholer.com/PCTPermits

  10. #10

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    It must be November; Postholer has risen again, like the Great Pumpkin, to complain about the PCTA, the permit system in general, trawl for clicks to his site, and broadcast the "stick it to the Man" vibe.

    Permits smooth out the herd, a voluntary attempt to solve the growing LNT nightmare that is SoCal. The fact that they're free, and give you access to the permit-mandatory areas, and seven National Parks should not be overlooked. Basically it's a giant get-of-of-jail free card, letting you simply show up whenever you like, and hike through those areas - a massive convenience.

  11. #11
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    @ADFH. OMG. That was kinda LOL through.


    @ PH. TU Postholer for posting but although LEGAL restrictions are few in the first 700 miles to say there're no restrictions when 300-350 are already in the Saufleys yard with a flatbed of Port A Johns and freshwater awaiting to be offloaded with another 100 PCT Zombie Hiker Trash wandering around Agua Dulce seeking to be "serviced" are pushing down the gates, 400+ are massed at KM awaiting southern Sierra suggested entry dates in a open the flood gates approach, AND YET THRUS and LASHers STILL WILL NOT ALTER ITINERARIES it CERTAINLY does require and leads to restrictions!

    Postholer I despise you writing, "There are ZERO restrictions on hiking the first 700 miles of trail." IT SENDS THE WRONG MESSAGE!


    Postholer, you damn well know what happens in those first 700 miles has major consequences north of those 700 miles!

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Postholer, you damn well know what happens in those first 700 miles has major consequences north of those 700 miles!
    ...and there you have it. It's not about the on trail impact, it's the off-trail. That's what this whole permit thing is about, no matter how you spin it.

    What happens off trail, kick-offs, businesses, trail angels, etc has NOTHING to do with the PCT. If your business can't handle it or too many people show up at your door, don't do it. It's a choice. THAT problem will correct itself.

  13. #13
    Registered User lonehiker's Avatar
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    You all act as if the world were ending because a trail has become more popular... If you don't like it move on to lesser known trails where you might actually have to figure a few things out on your own.
    Lonehiker

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by postholer.com View Post
    ...and there you have it. It's not about the on trail impact, it's the off-trail. That's what this whole permit thing is about, no matter how you spin it.

    What happens off trail, kick-offs, businesses, trail angels, etc has NOTHING to do with the PCT. If your business can't handle it or too many people show up at your door, don't do it. It's a choice. THAT problem will correct itself.
    That's the most naive statement I've ever read from you Postholer, a person who I otherwise have intellectual respect for his contributions.

    Of course, dispersal through permits includes addressing consequences of what happens off that 30" wide thread ie; in towns, etc but it CERTAINLY ALSO includes consequences on trail on water quality and availability, waste disposal, wildlife, fire risks, ON TRAIL EXPERIENCES.... and a variety of other ON TRAIL impacts. It's why permit quotas exists for TH's of the JMT, NOT just to protect businesses, hostels, etc!

    It's a false narrative to suggest any "trail" is merely a 30" wide thread unto itself. A "trail" is actually a larger reality!


    Spin not included, Scott.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Of course, dispersal through permits includes addressing consequences of what happens off that 30" wide thread ie; in towns, etc....
    That's why the JMT and Mt Whitney have such stringent (and needed) permit requirements, for the sake of the nearby towns.

    right.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by postholer.com View Post
    That's why the JMT and Mt Whitney have such stringent (and needed) permit requirements, for the sake of the nearby towns.

    right.
    I don't follow. Was that a rhetorical or facetious statement or of personal opinion?


    PH, I'm trying to have a intelligent forward thinking discussion with you.

  17. #17
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    Can we agree the PCTA acted in accord with other PCT agency partners USFS, NPS, BLM, CA State Parks, etc in issuing PCT thru Permits including establishing daily quotas?

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Can we agree the PCTA acted in accord with other PCT agency partners USFS, NPS, BLM, CA State Parks, etc in issuing PCT thru Permits including establishing daily quotas?
    Puppet, partner or panderer of the permit quotas I cannot say. Did the PCTA pander and beg their handlers for these quotas? Was this pandering done at the behest of a small group of TA's because their septic tanks were over-flowing? That information is not available to me.

    Here's what I DO know.
    + ANY permit is useless and pointless on land that has no restrictions.
    + The PCTA issued permit IS NOT required. It's a convenience. I can get my own permits.
    + The quota applies to the number of permits issued per day ONLY. Not the number of starters.
    + No dispersed camping without permit in a 25 mile section is the only restriction of the first 700 miles.
    + The Cleveland NF (caveat above), San Bernardino NF, Angeles NF, the BLM have no restrictions on the PCT hiker.
    + Passively intimidating hikers, calling hikers employers to get them fired, brow-beating them to accept pointless permit quotas has done irreparable damage.

    Can we at least agree on that?

  19. #19

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    Dogwood, on a lighter note:
    You joined whiteblaze 4,099 days ago.
    You've posted 16,545 times!!!!!!

    That's an average of 4 posts a day the last 11 years, 2+ months. Good god man, get a life!

  20. #20
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    You've revealed yourself Scott as one blindsided by a flame war mentality against TA's and the PCTA and attacking offensively those who have respectfully offered a different stance than you continuing to ignore valid on trail impacts and wider consequences of an exponentially increasing segment of trail users on one of the most used National Scenic Trails.

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