9.3.18. 26.1 miles.
I woke up this morning pretty groggily to my alarm. I was in the middle of a dream when it woke me, which is always disorienting in real life, but seems even more so when on trail!
I packed my things up, and it was already surprisingly warm (by PNW standards). I began the rest of the climb, which was about 2,000 more feet to go in 6ish miles. I had some phone service at the top, and needed to lodge a complaint about my Harry Potter audiobook. There were huge swaths of the audio missing! I was so bummed when it skipped a whole chapter last night that I couldn’t listen on, even though I’ve read these books loads of times. Hopefully they will sort it out. After the climb, I descended to a spring to fill water, running into Patches & Rob, and then Excel & company showed up. I ran into all of them again at the dirt road/ trailhead 2.5 miles later. I was excited to use the pit toilet and continue my streak of not digging a cat hole yet in Washington.
Having already done 12 miles, and since there were picnic tables, I decided to just eat lunch here and do a longer afternoon. I didn’t really take that long of a break, under an hour, before getting up and hiking again. My next destination was Blue Lake, where I needed to fill up on water. But I had a decent climb in between that. I put on podcasts to listen to, and pretty quickly into my hike I was stopped by day hikers in front of me who were walking trail angels! They gave me a 6pack of Oreos and a Starbucks via! Truly angels, since I was pretty hungry later on in the day, and ate the rest of my daily allotted snacks AND the Oreos.
After a pretty exposed finally push to the top of the climb, I started descending to Blue Lake, a beautiful lake where I didn’t get any good pictures. I did filter water, take a short break, and rinse my dirty socks. I only grabbed enough water to get me about 4 miles to the last water of the day. I also had an interesting animal encounter here! I was filtering my water on a stump when I heard something that I assumed was a squirrel scurrying up a tree trunk. But when I looked over, it was HUGE, had a very long body and tail and it’s face looked like a fox. We stared at each other for a good 10 seconds before it took off again. Idk what it was. A pine marten maybe?
The trail undulated up & down to the next water source, and I got more water, and I also decided to cold soak my ramen tonight instead of cooking it, bc I thought I might get to camp a little late.
There weren’t a ton of tentsites listed on guthooks, but there were a couple of comments about potential unlisted spots. I decided to just hike until I found something decent. I found a nice cleared spot about 1.7 miles before the spot I originally anticipated going to, so I decided to stop early and have a relaxing evening. It got cold fast, so I quickly changed into my baselayers and did my evening chores while eating my cold ramen in my quilt. Trout Lake tomorrow!