9.5.18. 20.6 miles.
I didn’t get the best sleep last night on the store’s lawn. There was a street light that seemed to be angled right at my face, and a surprising number of cars drove by on the highway. At least I got to sleep in a little bit. By 7 though, I was up and talking to Hot Pants again, chatting about gear and plans for the day. She was going to stay in town for a bit longer bc another one of her friends was showing up. I packed some of my things, and laid my tent and sleeping bag in the sun to completely dry out, then me and Hot Pants went to breakfast at the cafe. I had a great breakfast: a huckleberry latte, coconut pineapple pancakes, and I took a breakfast burrito to go to eat on trail. This ended up being a very good decision.
I said goodbye to Hot Pants with the promise of us needing to get together when we’re both back home to catch up on how the rest of the trail went for us. As we were finishing at the cafe, so many people showed up. It was a huge reunion! Patches & Rob were there and I gave them the run down of Trout Lake. They weren’t staying the night, but wanted to get some things done.
I went back to the store, alarmed that I only had 1 hour before the shuttle back to trail left. I quickly packed all of my things up, went on the hunt for my lost sock (found it!), filled up water, braided my hair, and managed to order my last pair of shoes to Snoqualmie Pass. I hope they arrive! Otherwise I’m going to have to call in a favor with Will & Angel when they visit me at Stevens pass. It’s always so odd ordering online when you need to make sure “PCT Hiker” and an ETA is on there somehow and these places have multiple address lines, so it’s a pretty full order form.
I got on the 10:30 shuttle and we were driven by Doug, the man who organizes all these trail angel shuttles to/from the trail. Truly an angel and he loves talking about hiker stories, Mt. Adams, the PCT, and his town. He was a very nice man, and fun to listen to. By the time we got dropped off and I reorganized a few things, it was a little after 11. I wanted to make it 20 miles to camp, so I got moving. The day started with a climb, but it wasn’t too steep. I had to filter water about 2 miles in though since there was no water until after the whole climb. But, it was totally exposed, as I was climbing through a burn area. This burn area was from years ago, as there is a lot of new growth mingled in with the burned trees.
I ran into a trail crew in 2 parties and talked with them for a bit and thanked them very much for being out here and making our trail walkable. They do a lot of hard work! Once I finally topped out on the climb, the trail undulated up and down for many miles. I got water at a small stream, joining Twinkle Toes, Jinx, and Excel in filtering. There was still 10 miles until the camp spot I wanted, and it was already 4 pm. I blew through all of my snacks, so I broke out the breakfast burrito, the perfect eating while hiking meal. The trail undulated some more before finally turning into the nice descent.
All day the view of Mt. Adams were so stunning as we did a half circle around the mountain. I even got to see Rainier for a bit, and I reminisced to Twinkle Toes about how much I love that mountain. The descent was decently long but not too steep. I was zooming down the hill, wanting to get to camp as early as possible. I ended up rolling in around 7:30, and found tons of people already there. Thankfully, there were also tons of campsites. I dumped my ramen in my cold soaking jar along with water, and then set up camp, collected more water from the nearby spring, and briefly chatted to some hikers I met in Trout Lake: orangutan, rigby, toe jam, and wind spirit. After bidding them goodnight, I crawled into my tent and finished setting up, and ate my perfectly rehydrated ramen, and now I get to sleep.