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Dark Adventure Days

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Dark Adventure Days

March 7th, 2006  · stk

Adventure Journals Lost ... "POOF" into the Ether

I don't often cry, but I did this morning. In a very twisted turn of events, I've managed to lose the journals for two of our biggest adventures: The Pacific Crest Trail and West Coast Cycle Tour (from Vancouver to San Francisco).

We emailed our journal updates to a service called "Diary-X", where they've been sitting ever since. After losing our guestbook entries in a similar "here-today, gone-tomorrow" kind of fashion, I made it a point to make a text backup of our entries ... or at least, I thought I had.

We received an email from Tom & Sheila, PCT friends. They had followed us on our journey, reading our Diary-X entries. Then they hiked the trail in 2004, using the same Diary-X journaling solution. They reported to us that the site had gone belly up and that all of the journal entries were magically, iretrieveably gone.

  Diary-X has suffered from an unrecoverable drive failure. Due to a combination of issues, the last backup (from December 2004) contained only configuration files and other non-essential files. We do not have any other backups for the site. All journals, user information, forum posts, templates, images, and everything else are all irrecoverably lost.

I first took the news casually, patting myself on the back for having made backups some time ago. When I searched my computer for the backups, I broke into a cold sweat when I couldn't FIND THEM. Now, instead of patting myself on the back, I'm kicking myself around the room, as it appears I had only thought about making them, which only proves that if you think about something enough, it's not actually the same as the DOING OF IT.

Fortunately, for Tom and Sheila, their journals ARE backed up and they have a hard copy that their Dad made, while they were on the hike. We have a hard-copy too. One that Rachel's father meticulously kept for us, while we were hiking the 2,650 miles from Mexico to Canada, over that 6-month period. Where is it? Well, we mailed it to Scott's grandmother to read, when she showed an interest in our journals (and wasn't savvy enough to read them online).

It was never mailed back. :'(

We even mailed our old ISP, thinking they might have backups off the mail server, which could resurrect our "sent mail" folder from April 2002 to October 2002. No such luck.

So, the journals that Rachel wrote, each night in the tent, after hiking 12 or more hours during the day ... appear LOST. POOF ... into the Ether ... gone. The links to our PCT Journal and West Coast Cycle Tour now point to the Phoenix version of Diary-X, with a link that explains what happened.

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Updated: 11-Nov-2009
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1.flag Kurt Comment
I'm looking, but so far have not found anything.

I'll keep checking. I'm real sorry to hear about this.

We would love to see you guys, but our travel schedule is full. We are off to the Caribbean for Spring Break, then Italy this Summer. You guys should join us, both destinations are hot and you guys surely need to thaw out a bit, right?

Miss seeing you all.
2.flag Wendy Comment
I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. I sure hope someone has them saved for you.

Best of luck.
3.flag Pat Comment
So sorry to hear about this. I will check the old computer when I getback in town next week. I still have some things on it that I have not transferred to the new puter. I may have saved some, don't know, yet.

Good luck!
4.flag Sarah Comment
Oh how frustrating - why do they always have the pages no one wants!! Good luck finding everything, I've had a look around but I'm afraid I nuked a lot in a recent New Year cleaning up of archives.
5.flag Carrie Comment
Oh what a bummer!!!!!!!!!!

I'm afraid I don't have any copies of your entries, but I sure feel for you and hope for the best in the recovery efforts! Thank god you have the real experiences/memories, but trust me, I understand all the efforts that went into the recording and wanting to have them for yourselves and others (and I sure enjoyed living the PCT vicariously through both of you). Good luck!!!

Carrie, one of your past PCT readers
6.flag John & Didi Comment
So sorry to hear of your lost journals - did you find a backup? Hope so.

Sorry we can't help. Take care.
7.flag Ann Dunford Comment
Hi There!

So sorry to hear your news. Can understand you being so upset. I've spent time looking through my "Scott and Rachel Files", but I haven't come up with any entries of your journal.

I do hope that someone comes up trumps and fill the missing gaps.

I had a lovely time however, looking through your PCT slideshow again of your trek from Mexico back to Canada on the Pacific Trail. Just wonderful.
8.flag stk Comment
Thanks, everyone, for your sentiments.

We have good news!

One of our readers, Tom (who lives in Orinda, California) had most of the PCT entries! Thank you Tom!!

These events demonstrate the power of publicly sharing our stories and underscores the value, descriptiveness and readability of our online journals, which Rachel wrote and which detail our 6-month, 2,658-mile PCT adventure.

We have restored all the entries Tom had for the PCT. Unfortunately, very few of the follow-on West Coast Cycle Tour entries have been found and this journal remains off-line.