9.16.18. 7.5 miles.
I set my alarm for 5:30 this morning, knowing I needed to get hiking on time, and knowing I’d roll around in my quilt for as long as possible. I could hear some light rain hitting my tent, but finally started getting ready around 5:45. Starting with the rain jacket and pants on was a necessity. Right after I used the amazing pit toilet near the camp, it started raining. I packed my tent up and started hiking.
The rain fizzled out for a bit, but started right back up again. It was not an easy 7.5 miles to the pass, there was one pretty steep uphill, and another more gradual one, before the trail finally descended towards the ski resort. Happy to get out of the rain, I went straight to the resort, mainly focused on getting a hot breakfast panini and coffee to warm my soul. I also needed to get my box. While eating, I talked to my mom on the phone, discussing ending logistics. I’m lucky my parents will be picking me up in Canada! I then got my box, and as I was heading outside to reorganize my stuff, Will and Angel appeared! I dropped all of my things, so happy to see them! They helped me carry all my stuff and we hurried to Will’s car to get out of the rain.
First stop was to head over to the Mountaineer’s Lodge so I could get checked in since I’d be staying the night there. I got the run-down of the place from one of the volunteers, and then went back down to the basement to start pulling my wet stuff out to dry in the drying room, start a load of my bucket laundry and get that stuff drying, and brought my other things up to the bunk room. Angel opened up my resupply package and I rummaged through it, making a list of things I still needed. After I was done with all of that, we all headed off to Leavenworth!
We went to Safeway first so I could get resupply out of the way, and then we ventured down to the main touristy part of town with all of the Bavarian decor and shops. We browsed the streets and found a bratwurst place, so we ate there for lunch, all of us getting our own brats and sharing a pretzel. We walked around some more, and eventually ended up at an ice cream place and all got the same flavor - chai honeycomb. Great minds (and tastebuds) think alike! I had such a good time with Angel & Will and I’m so happy they came out to visit me and chauffeur me around! It has been a morale booster to be visited by friends, and it’s definitely needed for this last week on trail!
After a lovely afternoon, they drove me back to the lodge and we said goodbye. I’ll be seeing them soon enough in Seattle, but this visit was way too short. It was hard to see them go! Thankfully, the lodge is incredibly warm and welcoming. I took a shower, finished my bucket laundry, changing into the first set of clothes I’d washed & dried, and organized my resupply. I then went upstairs and caught up online, especially with work stuff: I’ll be going back to REI after the trail and needed to send some emails! I also finalized some after-trail travel. I’ll be hanging out for a few days in Seattle before flying to Sacramento to go to my lakehouse for some decompression time before finally going home. I texted my mom some info on clothes to pack for me, and soon enough, it was dinner time! The volunteers are amazing and cook us dinner and breakfast at the lodge. We had spaghetti, corn bread, a tomato salad, and brownies for dessert! After dinner, where Sprinkles and I discussed true Harry Potter canon and our dislike of the Cursed Child play, we helped out with dishes, and then relaxed some more in the communal living area. It’s such a nice lodge, and they are so kind to us! There was even a movie playing, but I used the time to blog and use social media, before going to bed, always later than I want when I’m in town. Today was also my 5 month mark on trail! So insane!