024 | Marijke Riddering (and Scott) & SupDog, a 1600-mile decompression walk on the Pacific Crest Trail
Manage episode 341680827 series 2882583
You’ve heard of decompression walks, letting your dog enjoy nature and sniff away from the hustle and bustle of urban life.
How about a 1600-mile decompression walk?
Luna (Marijke) and Werewolf (Scott) hiked the Pacific Crest Trail (2650 miles) for their honeymoon and after clearing the desert section in Southern California, their dog SupDog (“real” name Balu) joined them for the remainder of the trail.
Marijke tells us about the mindset they needed to be in (Hike Your Dogs Hike), the accommodations they made for him and so much more.
What food did they bring?
What’s it like bringing a black dog in warm weather?
How did they deal with judgment from others?
What are town visits like? (“scamming” a sausage off the local butcher anyone?)
She also doesn’t gloss over the hard stuff. SupDog was sound sensitive and on day 1 of him joining there’s dynamite blasting on trail. Now what?
Or that time where he would mysteriously refuse to walk every late afternoon and it took a while to figure out what was going on.
As Marijke explains it was just a stringing together of a series of decisions, constantly evaluating where you are at and what is the best way forward based on the situation as it is.
One of my favorite parts is where Marijke explains that SupDog was sound sensitive and the choice was simply between him being sound sensitive at home or sound sensitive on the trail with the family who loves him. It doesn’t sound like too hard of a choice to make, when you put it that way.
After coming back home Marijke and Scott decided to pay it forward and they started the Thru-Hiker Dog Facebook Group to exchange information with those considering thru-hiking with their dog that is judgment free.
I am a member of that group and if you’re considering hiking longer distances with your dog I highly encourage you to join. You will be able to ask all the questions you need to figure out what works for you and your dog. Marijke also mentions that her present dog probably is not a long-distance trail dog. This is one conclusion you might come to as well based on the information shared freely within the group.
It’s all about what you believe is right for you and your dog.
The Thru-hiker Dogs Facebook Group, that was started by Marijke and Scott to provide dog guardians with information, tips, and tricks, given by people who’ve actually been there and done that:
The dehydrated dog food SupDog was eating on trail:
The Pacific Crest Trail Association:
The other two major long-distance trails:
The Appalachian Trail: https://appalachiantrail.org/
The Continental Divide Trail: https://continentaldividetrail.org/
MSR Gear: https://www.msrgear.com/