In search of home.



“So this is home,” he says as he spreads his arms and looks around him.

“Yeah. For the next 6 months,” I say and then fall silent to let it really sink in.

It didn’t sink in. It still hasn’t, and I wonder if it will tomorrow.

With each step I take, my mind tells me, “This is real.” Step. “You’re really here.” Step. “Your journey’s started.” Step. “See, you’re walking on the trail.” Step. “Yes, that one.” Step. “The Pacific Crest Trail.” Step. “No, not a lookalike.” Step. “Not pretend.” Step. “The real thing.” Step. “You’re here.”

And as my mind goes about convincing me, I still can’t believe it. As my legs get sorer by the minute, as I sit down to take a break, as I look up at the night sky above me or the white sandy trail before me, I still wonder if it’s real.

Later, after a late 7pm start and getting in almost 10 miles by midnight, he turns around and says, “Let’s look for home.”

I know just what he means. It’s time to find our first flat ground to set up our tents on and claim this place as home.

And suddenly, it begins to feel real.

I shudder with excitement as my desert night hiking partner and I take off in search of home.

About elinatravels

I’m Elina Oliferovskiy, a Russian-born 26-year-old restless soul who’s never really found a place to dig her roots in deep ever since I moved to the United States in 1998. I’ve lived in a 39-foot RV with 8 people and a Chihuahua and road-tripped around approximately 38 states for 1.5 months. I’ve packed my car and headed north without a destination and ended up in Big Sur, CA and lived there for a bit. I recently moved to Bend, OR without ever having been here prior (simply went off of the recommendations of others). And I just came back from a trip to France, Luxembourg, England, and Ireland and have many fun stories to share. My alter-ego is Free Spirit (my trail name on the PCT) and I am an aspiring solo female Pacific Crest Trail thru-hiker, who’d hiked half of the trail in 3.5 months in 2016 and a did a one-month section hike in 2014. I started this blog to chronicle my attempt to get from Mexico to Canada on foot via the PCT. I have also hiked in England, Luxembourg, and hope to hike the Camino De Santiago (St. James’ Way) in Spain and the Te Araroa Trail in New Zealand, as well as many others. I love challenging myself physically, mentally, and spiritually, exploring and meeting new people who introduce me to their perspectives on life and allow me to be part of what they hold dearest to their hearts, pushing myself outside of my comfort zone in order to try exciting new things, and seeing, tasting, smelling, experiencing all of what this wonderful world I live in has to offer. This is why I travel. This is also why I move frequently. I’ve been moving somewhere new nearly every year, and I absolutely love my lifestyle. Now, I am deciding between teaching English in Vietnam, working remotely from New Zealand, or moving back to CA and woodcarving for a season. We will see what happens in the fall/winter of 2017. For now, I plan to stay in Bend, OR another few months and absorb all I can from this wonderful little (though rapidly growing) town. Feel free to follow along my journey by reading and commenting on my blog, adding me on Facebook (search for Elina Oliferovskiy and write me a message telling me you are a follower of my blog), or emailing me at
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14 Responses to In search of home.

  1. Congratulations on your start and first night at camp! Looking forward to seeing your updates throughout the adventure! Thanks so much for sharing your vision of this journey! Be safe and have fun 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Panda/Steven says:

    The stars are your roof and the earth is both your path, bed, and doorstep. It’s all right at your fingertips and stretches as far as you can imagine. You are home; and there might be no greater feeling than finding home anywhere.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Stacey teaster says:

    I get so excited to hear youve posted something… I check my emailboften in the day…. I have no idea who you are yet I feelnlike Im right along side you and its surreal even for me to actually follow along your everyday….. Amazing! I hope you sleep well! Take care, stacey from Arkansas

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m a PCT trail crew leader working in far N. Ca. (hope to meet you as you pass thru our section). But I’m also quite electronically challenged and am wondering how you are able to post to your blog while on the trail? Sounds like something I’d like to know how to do… although I’m guessing it might be by using a cell phone… which I don’t have.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sean says:

    Your package should be waiting for you at the paradise cafe. Good luck and God speed!


  6. Tracy says:

    I’m a Seattle gal who stumbled upon your blog via the PNW Outdoor Women group. Your writing is beautiful. Safe travels, and I’ll be following along!

    Liked by 1 person

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