Two Harbors, MN—April 20, 2016—Granite Gear athletes and environmental stewards Packing it Out will hike 2,650 miles while picking up a thousand pounds of trash on the Pacific Crest Trail at the beginning of May. The thru-hiking team removed 1,090.5 lbs. of trash, including an entire mattress during their thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail last year.
This year, cyclist and outdoorsman Chris Moore will join Packing It Out members Seth Orme and Paul Twedt. The team will leave from the southern terminus near Campo, Calif. on May 6. Their late-season start will enable them to clean up trash that previous hikers have left behind. The team has set the same goal of 1,000 lbs. for the trail, expecting that with the rise in popularity of thru-hikes, there will be more trash to pick up.
“In an ideal world, we wouldn’t reach our goal, because there wouldn’t be trash to pick up,” team member Seth Orme said. “After Wild came out, PCT thru hikers have shot through the roof, and so has trash left on the trail. If we can remove a fraction of that, we’ll be happy.”
The team also aims to steward other hikers’ cleanup efforts through leading by example, something that happens often at campgrounds and popular sections of the trail.
“When we begin to clean up a communal area, we view it as an uplifting experience,” Orme said. “Usually, other people will see us cleaning up and ask us about the project, then offer to help or even take trash off the trail for us. It’s a great way to spread the message and make a bigger impact. We have dreams to take our mission to other areas in need of attention around the country and world.”
Fans of Granite Gear for many years, the team will carry the award-winning Crown VC 60 backpacks which Orme and Twedt have considered their essential backpack for any long trail hike. Packing It Out also uses Granite Gear’s eVent Sil compression sacks as both trash bags and compression sacks for gear, because they’re easily washable and can be compressed to save pack space.
“We’re proud to support a team that not only uses our gear day in and out in the harshest conditions, but also makes an impact while doing it,” Rob Coughlin, Vice President of Sales and Product Development, said. “The Packing It Out Team has inspired all of us to be aware of the small impact we can make on a daily basis.”
To keep up with Packing It Out’s progress, fans can view their Saved by Spot tracking map. The Packing it Out team will also host Q&As, group clean ups and other events along the trail. Follow Granite Gear on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to receive event info.
Additional support for this trip was provided by Gear Junkie, Sierra Designs, Zeal Optics, Altra footwear, Darn Tough, Clif Bar and Justin’s Nut Butter.
About Packing It Out
Packing it Out aims to inspire a greater sense of environmental stewardship within our communities by raising awareness for litter conditions along America’s trails. In 2015, Packing It Out completed thru-hike on the Appalachian Trail. Starting March 29, the team backpacked over 2,000 miles from the AT’s southern terminus, Springer Mountain, to the trails northern terminus, Mt. Katahdin. The end result was a very clean trail, tons of inspired hikers and over 1,000 pounds of trash removed from America’s scenic trail.
About Granite Gear
For 30 years, Granite Gear has brought cutting-edge products to the outdoor marketplace. Their award-winning backpacks, adventure travel gear, extensive variety of storage sacks, lifestyle accessories, and canoe gear offer excellence in design and construction. Granite Gear’s desire is for all outdoor enthusiasts and travelers to experience the incredible durability and comfort of their products. Located in Northern Minnesota, just minutes from the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and the Superior Hiking Trail, they have a rugged and beautiful testing ground for their products.