Permit Update Day – January 17, 2018

We’ve been looking toward this day with some hesitation.  We do have a permit to start the Pacific Crest Trail at Campo, CA (the southern terminus) on May 6, 2018.

Photo by Michael Lewis, PCTA Volunteer

Do we get in to the Permit Management Area and try to get a new date?  Will the computer system at PCTA again stall and dump our permit altogether?  It seems like trying to do anything is too big a chance.  This all starts at 10:30am again.

Congratulations on planning a trip along the Pacific Crest Trail! This email confirms that you’ve applied for a PCT Long-distance Permit. This is NOT your permit and you have not yet been issued one.

We’ll start reviewing and approving permits within 3 weeks of receiving an application. You can check the status of your permit in the permit management area. Look to see if it’s still pending review, approved, or some other status.

All permits requests submitted between Nov. 1 and Jan. 16 will be reviewed quickly, but they won’t be available for download until Jan. 18th at the earliest. You can check your permit status in your management area. If it’s marked “Reviewed & Approved” you can feel comfortable that the permit is yours. We’ll also send you an email when your permit is reviewed and approved. At that point you can continue with the next steps of your travel plans.

Once your permit is issued, you will get an email telling you to go to the permit management area to download your permit. You must print it out and carry your physical, paper permit with you on the trail. Digital versions are not allowed.

It’s crucial for you to be well prepared. Please read our PCT specific Leave No Trace information and watch the video. Also, if you haven’t already, please read the entirety of the Discover the Trail portion of our website. It is full of important information that will benefit the trail and keep you safe.

If you have made a donation to the Pacific Crest Trail Association, you will receive an emailed donation receipt. If you’d like to make a donation at this time, you can do so at

Permit application ID:
Application date: 2017-11-01
Name Michael Raymond
Starting location Mexican border near Campo (CA SR 94)
Ending location Canadian border
Starting date 2018-05-06
Ending date 2018-09-29
Method of travel Foot
Over 18 years old Yes
Today’s Total $0
Whitney Fee – Charged on permit approval $21

Reservation changes

Please do not reapply for another permit. Up until the point that your permit is issued, changes to your itinerary can be made by modifying your application online. After your permit has been issued, you can request changes by calling the PCTA at 916-285-1846. Our office is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Please plan ahead – processing special requests takes time and is subject to availability.

Mike has gone into the Permit Management Area on-line several times to see what it entails.  It has the details of our initial confirmed permit, some required reading, hiking information, and a button to “change details”.  When that is clicked, the 2018 monthly calendars come up with the number of taken and available permits for each day

Many times Mike has gone in to see that “35/35” of the permits are taken for all the days from mid March to the end of June.  Today, 15 more permit spots become available.  We decide to carefully give it a try.

Again, both Elaine and I have our computers ready to go.  We’re both  on the permit management area page.  We’ve clicked April 20 on the calendar even though it still says 35 of 35 taken.  It’s nearly 10:30am.  All of a sudden, each day on the calendar says “35/50” in yellow numbers.  We look at each other and ready ourselves to “Update Details”.  I count down…3…2…1…click!  Annnnnd….the screen flashes!!  At the top it says…


We look and can hardly believe it, but right there in the field that shows our start date, it now says 4-20-2018.  Is it really true?  Everything seems to indicate that its been done and we now have our preferred date.  Woo – hooo!  Nothing like this is really complete until you’ve got your printed permit in your hand so we still have to wait for final approval.  That may be three weeks away!  We can only wait for the email that tells us to download a permit:  for 5/6/18, or 4/20/18, or nothing comes and something has happened and our permit was lost in the process.  We’ll try to be patient but…

2 thoughts on “Permit Update Day – January 17, 2018

  1. Sound very exciting and challenging also. Hope you have a great adventure. Can’t wait to hear al the news.
    Caryl McLaughlin PL


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s