Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail

The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a long-distance trail that begins at the Mexico border and traces the higher elevations of California’s enormous Sierra Nevada mountain range through the Cascade Range in Oregon and Washington. The PCT has become one of the more popular national trails — many thru-hikers attempt its 2,650 miles.

The original idea for the PCT came in the early 1930s, established by a community-based effort involving a number of organizations and proponents including photographer Ansel Adams. In 1968, President Lyndon Johnson signed legislation establishing the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail in conjunction with the Appalachian Trail, effectively kicking off the National Trails System.

The PCT route was officially completed in the 1980s and today it passes through seven spectacular national parks and many national forests.