Day 161: Rainy Pass to Hart’s Pass (mile 2622)
9.23.18. 30.6 miles.
It didn’t rain too much last night. The hard rain stopped around 8 or 9, and it may have drizzled some more. My tent, rain jacket and pants were still super wet. I hate packing up wet stuff, much less putting wet gear back on. Thankfully, my shoes were a little drier and I had dry socks.
I started hiking at 6:20. I immediately started climbing, the climb was not finished from yesterday. This was a little steeper though. I passed the spot I wanted to camp and was happy I didn’t go there: I was completely in a cloud the whole hike up and that tent site was in the thick of it. I leapfrogged with another hiker named Double Down throughout the morning.
As I approached the top of the climb, the mist I was in was turning into snow! So I’ve officially been snowed on now. It was super light and actually so much better than rainy mist bc it’s not as wet.
I could tell that the top of the climb should have good views, but there was so much fog and clouds I couldn’t see much. I was excited for the larch trees though! Some are already yellow, but most are still a yellow-green color. They’ll be beautiful in about a week I’m guessing! The trail undulated along the ridge for a while before descending a bit, then climbing again shortly to Methow Pass, before a long descent through woods. I took my lunch break by the Methow River, eating not only a cinnamon roll from the bakery, but also a dehydrated meal since I didn’t have it for dinner last night thanks to the trail angels. I met and chatted with Cover Girl (a man) and Dune.
I was feeling very full after lunch, which didn’t help on the climb out. It wasn’t so steep, but definitely rocky at first, which I hate, and it took me a while to find a good rhythm. I worked up a sweat on the climb up and actually took off my rain gear, but at the top, it was windy and I could tell it would probably start getting misty again soon, so put it all back on. I was right. Soon, it started snowing again. Like I said though, so much better than rain.
The trail went up and down a ridge for a little bit before another small climb and then a descent. I wasn’t sure if I’d make it to Hart’s Pass, but once I got to the camp area before it and saw my timing, I decided to go for it, even though I’d need to finish the miles with a headlamp. I booked it down there and arrived around 7:30 pm. Low and behold, there were former hikers doing trail magic! They were waiting for some hikers to finish their border tag. I grabbed an orange from them, and found a campsite to set up in. I quickly set up with the snow falling around me, but like I said, so much better than if it was raining bc I was pretty dry & my rain gear was basically dry getting ready in my tent! So not a lot of really wet stuff in corners. And my feet were dry since the snow doesn’t really get to your socks in the way that the water does.
I can’t believe I’m 30 miles from Canada! The feeling is unreal. I also can’t believe I did a 30 today. First in Washington! Sometimes when the weather is bad and you don’t stop to take lots of pictures, you just power through the day.