I met a guy (an avid outdoorsman) a few months ago who told me the best place he had ever hiked was the Lost Coast in California. I had not heard of it before, but it’s one of the most rugged sections of the west coast located between Eureka and Fort Bragg. The Coastal Highway was actually diverted inland due to the terrain. I was excited for the challenge (and opportunity) since I was planning to drive up the coast, however I checked online and a few years ago the Bureau of Land Management instituted a permit requirement to hike the trail. Only 5 permits are issued per day, with a maximum of 60 people permitted to begin hiking the trail each day. On the 22nd, I checked the permit availability for hiking the Lost Coast Trail. There was one permit available the following day on the 23rd, and another available on…August 1st! Oh man, talk about lack of preparation on my part. I had heard that the trail is popular, but the scarcity of permits made it almost impossible for me to get on the trail in time (and it turned me off of the idea a little bit too). I had to be in Vegas on August 2nd so this wasn’t going to work unless I made the drive the following day to get the permit for the 23rd.