Five Questions for PCT Hiker and Author Philip Kramer

When someone spends as much time on the trail as Philip Kramer, author of "Hiking the PCT: Northern California," he must do a lot a thinking. Right? We tapped into his thoughts with these five questions.
Mountaineers Books Mountaineers Books
April 04, 2018

We got in touch with author Philip Kramer to ask him a few questions about writing his recent book,  Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail: Northern California. Here's what he had to say.

Philip, your book has just been published. How long was the Northern Cal section you wrote about and how long did it take you to write the book?

I covered over 740 miles of trail in Northern California and spent about 2.5 years hiking, photographing, and writing (and re-writing!) for the project. I wish I could say most of those hours were spent hiking but it turns out I'm a much faster hiker than I am a writer!

Did you do your research in one long trip, or did you revisit the trail over a period of time?

I became a new father about the same time I started this project. Leaving for months at a time wasn't an option so I broke the research up into about a half-dozen separate trips over two hiking seasons. The advantage of this was being able to revisit areas of the PCT in different seasons to see what changed.

Yours is the final volume in the 4-book set. Since yours came out last does that mean you were the slowest hiker?

It very well might! Perhaps we should get all the authors together and have a race?! No, the books were started at different times and I was the last writer contracted. We all took about the same amount of time to complete our sections. 

Have you hiked the entire PCT?

I have! I thru-hiked the entire PCT (from south to north) in 2013. I left the Mexico border on April 26 and finished in Canada on October 26 (a very late and very snowy finish).

You’re just back in the States from a trip to Morocco. Are you writing a guidebook for Northern Africa?

Nope, I was just on vacation. Even hiking guidebook authors need them!

Hear more

Philip, along with the authors of the other three Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail guidebooks, will be the featured speakers at the May  22 BeWild event, at The Mountaineers' Seattle Program Center.

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