The PCTA’s annual meeting showcases the best of the trail community

It’s always a special time when the Pacific Crest Trail community gathers. After all, we care about this great trail and we’re working together to do something to ensure that it is the best it can be.

During the PCTA’s Annual Meeting, held Saturday, April 27, 2019, at PCTA headquarter in Sacramento, it was clear that our collective effort is paying off. The list of the association’s accomplishments for last year is long. What’s more, there surely wasn’t time to go into everything we are doing together to maintain and protect our beloved trail.

PCTA Executive Director and CEO Liz Bergeron (center) with Lisa Naito and Ken Schwarz, members of the PCTA’s volunteer Board of Directors.

But we hit the highlights!

Land Protection: Through partnerships with the U.S. Forest Service, several land trusts and private owners, the PCTA helped protect several parcels from development, investing $8.2 million in federal, state and private funding. These important properties include valuable watersheds and habitats for endangered or threatened species. They are now available for public use.

PCTA Associate Director of Trail Operations Justin Kooyman received an award of appreciation from the Tahoe Rim Trail Association’s Chris Binder (right).

Because of your support and volunteer efforts, the PCTA was able to:

  • Hire a new regional representative to oversee trail protection and maintenance for the Southern Sierra
  • Hire a volunteer programs associate to help manage our expanding volunteer efforts
  • Introduce a Trail Town Program and partner with Mount Shasta, California, as our pilot
  • Make significant strides in reopening fire-damaged trails in Southern California and the Columbia River Gorge
  • Replace the PCT’s Northern Terminus Monument
  • Complete the Sierra Buttes relocation

It was a joyous occasion to celebrate the accomplishments of the PCTA’s dedicated community.

Let’s look at the numbers

Your contributions of financial support and volunteer time are amazing, and all the users of the PCT are benefitting. $6.6 million worth of resources went to the trail in 2018.

Here’s a breakdown:

  • $2.7 million in private contributions
  • $2.9 million worth of volunteer labor
  • $1 million in government funding

Liz Bergeron speaks to the PCT community during the PCTA’s annual meeting.

More 2018 numbers:

  • 13,500 members
  • 2,215 volunteers donated 118,524 hours to the trail
  • 3,143 acres protected along the trail
  • 7,331 long-distance permits issued

2016 thru-hikers and PCTA members Jennifer Albinson, Justin Cohan-Shapiro and their daughter, Whitney.

Numbers surely don’t tell the whole story. The energy in the room completes the tale. Enthusiasm, goodwill, support, happiness, friendship, and trust were on hand during the annual gathering. It’s no wonder that our work together continues to strengthen and that we are able to expand our efforts.

Everyone loves a raffle!

It was wonderful to celebrate everything you put into the trail last year and to look back on all those accomplishments together. From the staff and Board of Directors, we especially want to say thank you for all your contributions to our mission to protect, preserve and promote the Pacific Crest Trail.

Read more about your contributions to the PCTA’s 2018 accomplishments in the annual report.

2017 thru-hikers and PCTA members Michael and Elizabeth Dorsi. Photos by the PCTA’s Jack Haskel and Ryan Brizendine.

Author: Mark Larabee

Mark Larabee is the PCTA's Advocacy Director. He is the former editor of the "PCT Communicator" magazine and co-author of "The Pacific Crest Trail: Exploring America's Wilderness Trail" published in 2016. Larabee is a journalist, part of a team who won the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news for The Oregonian newspaper. He hiked the PCT across Oregon for a 2005 series for the paper and has been with PCTA since 2010. He lives in Portland.