Ron Strickland is the founder of the 1200-mile Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail

The PNT runs from the Continental Divide to the Pacific Ocean. Known for its rugged beauty, challenging terrain, and magnificent vistas, the trail has inspired both books and movies. Ron began work on the PNT in 1970. The first successful thru-hikes were in 1977. The first commercially-published guidebook came out in 1984. And Congress designated the PNT as one of the nation's 11 national scenic trails in 2009.


Pathfinder - Blazing a New Wilderness Trail in Modern America

"A truly fascinating and masterful interweaving of the narrative of the author's own unique story as the founder of one of America's great trails--the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail--and the wisdom he has gleaned from this work and the people he has met along the way. It is a story of romance: Strickland's love for the majestic scenery of the Pacific Northwest, for the adventure that long-distance trails bring to those who use them, for the dedicated people who work to create and maintain them, and for the one special person in his life. Highly recommended." --5-star review


"In Pathfinder Ron Strickland evokes many of the feelings experienced in my own 40 years of hiking; no one else has ever described them so well for me. Ron's love of a life of simplicity and deep immersion in wilderness can speak to all of us." --5-star review


"A thoroughly entertaining read which can be enjoyed by anyone who loves backpacking and wild places, even if they've never been near the Pacific Northwest." --5-star review

Ronald Gibson Strickland, Ph.D.

Ron “Pathfinder” Strickland is one of only two living founders of national scenic trails.  Beginning in 1970, he began to create a pathway from the Continental Divide at Glacier National Park, Montana to the Pacific Ocean at Cape Alava, Washington.  In 1983 he and his fellow explorer Ted Hitzroth thru-hiked the proposed trail’s 1200 miles east to west to publish its innovative guidebook.  In 2009, that route was established by Congress as the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail.  Ron Strickland has also developed new concepts such as the 7700-mile, transcontinental Sea-To-Sea Route.  Oregon State University Press published his memoir, Pathfinder.

The Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail

A 1,200 mile trail from the continental divide in Montana to the western-most point of the contiguous United States, Cape Alava, WA. 

The Sea-to-Sea Transcontinental Route

A 7,700 mile route from the mouth of the St. Lawrence River in Canada to Cape Alava in Washington state.