The thing is, Gleb Velikanov has already hiked the whole Pacific Crest Trail.
That’s right: in 2010, Gleb spent four months on the 2,663-mile trail that stretches from Mexico up into Canada. As a man on a mission, he hammered out day after day of 25-mile climbs and descents through deserts and over mountains.
But four years later, he’s back on it, hiking with two friends of his dad on a southern portion before returning to his home in Portland. And he’s doing it this time in the Karhu Flow Trail Fulcrum.
“My dad was a great excuse,” Gleb says. ”It was like someone twisting my arm to do something awesome.”
This trip, he says, he’s been slowing down to stop and smell the figurative roses. Through the deserts and mountains he’s actually been taking enough time to enjoy himself instead of flashing past it like last trip, “to soak in the awesomeness the trail has to offer.”
The trail itself isn’t static; each year it undergoes changes and reroutes. “Trail Angels,” or people that are willing to give you a ride into town to clean up, rotate in and out.
“It’s just fun to go over this great trail, even for a portion of it,” he says.
Even though it’s been awhile since he’s hiked this much, Gleb’s got his “trail legs” back under him, and if he were on his own, he’d be back up to his old daily mileage. “It’s like running a marathon,” he says. “It’s demanding and it’s hard, but you find this new pleasure. It really gives you more pleasure than you invest into it.”
With his old comrades, he’s planning on punching out 450 miles or so, ejecting just north of Los Angeles after starting down in Mexico. What’s carried him and his friends this far is the Karhu Flow Trail, which utilizes an aggressive outsole for traction and fulcrum technology to smooth out every step.
“I’ve worn them for 250 miles,” Gleb says. “For backpacking, they knocked it out of the park.”
His Karhus have held up great, and he expects them to last through the trip, “and then I’ll probably run in them some more.”
After Gleb returns home, it won’t be the end of his adventuring. He’s already planning out a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail along the East Coast of the U.S. And then there are all the marathons and ultramarathons he does anyway. All the hiking has helped him drop a few pre-adventure pounds, and he’s feeling fit and lean: “I’ll be in great running shape when I get back.”
Gleb’s webpage: http://poindexterendurance.com/
Gleb’s Instagram: http://instagram.com/PoindexterEndurance