The Pacific Crest Trail

National Geographic Pacific Crest Trail ★★
National Geographic utilizes their abundant photographic skills in order to document the act of thru-hiking of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), a trail that runs from Mexico to Canada through the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Mountain range. The cameramen latch onto several hikers (and horseback riders) in various stages of the event to catch their ongoing impressions. Generally, the hikers are caught in their best, and not their worst moments, and so the hike achieves a Hollywood-style glorification. The filming is wonderful, with the sections of the trail caught in its best light. Especially noticeable were the helicopter views of several hikers achieving the summit of Forrester Pass. Unfortunately, this view might have been a little later in the year than when thru-hikers generally hit Forrester Pass (there are in most descriptions more snow and black ice on the pass), and it is seen from a helicopter, a view generally not seen by thru-hikers. Many marvelous sections of the trail are missed in this all-too-brief “documentary”, and a glorification of an arduous feat that I presume none of the cinema photographers or scriptwriters of this film had ever attempted. The film is too short, too expensive, and too unrealistic to be of any value of actually picturing the PCT.