Day 119: Medford to mile 1744.3

8.12.18. 25.6 miles.

I woke up this morning not feeling too hot. But actual temperature-wise, I was super hot. The AC in the room kept switching on and off so the last couple hours of sleep were not really spent sleeping, but listening to the AC so I could make a decision about pulling covers on/ off. It was quite annoying. I also just felt so full from food and my GI system was in general distress. I finally got going around 6:30 and we all woke up. My mom braided my hair after I packed everything up, and then we hit the road, first stopping at Starbucks for breakfast. Riley rode in the back sitting next to me on the seat for the whole ride. She knew I was leaving her again and was very sad. We got to the trail at 8:00 and I said my goodbyes and started hiking shortly after. It was so hard leaving my parents at the start of the trail, bc everything was so unknown. It was pretty easy to leave after the lakehouse, knowing I’d be back with Butters & Hot Mess, but this time was a little hard again, knowing I was going back to hiking by myself, knowing how mentally challenging and lonely it could be. It was really nice to finally have time with people I know & love in town, bc the last few weeks really have been lonely on trail and in town, hiking and zeroing by myself, mostly.

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The morning air was nice and crisp and cool, not hot yet. But like usual, after a couple zeros, it’s hard to get going again, and the climbing pretty much started right away. I eventually put on podcasts pretty early just bc I was getting a little bored.

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The scenery was again uninspiring. I think it will be a little lackluster pretty much until I get to Crater Lake, then Oregon will become pretty. Any views to be had were covered with smoke, though I wouldn’t call today super smoky. I had some blue skies and in general, the air smelled fresh. I had a decent amount of climbing for the day, most of it being earlier in the day. I stopped for lunch about 13 miles in, and didn’t rest for too long since I had a late start.

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The afternoon wasn’t very eventful either, though I did see about 7 SOBO hikers. No NOBOs though until I met one at the junction to the place I’m camping tonight - a horse camp on Lake Hyatt. It has a super nice pit toilet, and I’m camped next to people with horses, and they offered me some water, which I didn’t need, but they were super nice!

I need to actually wake up early tomorrow and bust out some miles. The good news is that today was the day with more elevation gain, and the next couple days shouldn’t be as bad. Oregon is known for having much easier terrain than the rest of the PCT, so I’m pretty excited for that.