Howdy from Snoqualmie Pass!
Oh my, how Washington continues to deliver. I bust out 75 miles in 2 and 1/2 days and it's been some of the most amazing trails and hiking that I have ever seen. The last 30 miles of this section were out of this world. For a girl that lives in Banff, that says a lot!
I was questioning my decision making yesterday as I staggered out of the woods, exhausted at 8:30 last night to find myself a bed at the Summit Inn. The best surprise was the shitty-ass trailer out front of the gas station: it was open at 9:00 at night and the guy proceeded to pump me full of the best gourmet chicken, veggie and ginger (huge chunks) Currgy that I've ever had. Then he poured me a couple of glasses of coconut milk and charged me a whopping $7. Oh, America! I love everything about you, but especially your small towns and the people that live there.
My body continues to amaze me, fingers crossed it continues to do so. I'm giving it all awful lot of abuse. I know that there's a strong possibility of injury, but currently I wouldn't change a thing. If I blow up tomorrow it will all be worth it. These are some seriously hard miles! It's one big roller coaster and this girl is love, love loving the epic climbs and monster descents. I really, really, have to repress the urge to run on the downhills - it's a good thing the pack weight and design is keeping me grounded to a walk I love to downhill run and fly down the mountain and trudging with a pack is distinctively less fun and downright slow. :) I've improved: I can definitely pick my feet up quicker on the descent than when I first started. Uphills, well - I love to climb and enjoy the reward when you get to the top. And the rewards here are epic.
I'm lollygagging this morning, but computering, phone calls and life maintenance all take time. They are enjoyable. A large greasy breakfast, feet-up, stretching (ouch), laundry and now some computer time. If I'm lucky I should still get a half day in on the trail. It's a welcome break and my dawgs are killin' me. It's a bit of a heat wave at present in Washington. It was smokin' hot and had to be in the 90's all day. That meant taking special care with lots of shirt and hat immersions in the creek to keep me cool, way more water and even electrolyte tablets. I've got to take care of me! And the wilderness is know place to be pukey and heat strokey.
Yesterday, I ran into a thru-hiker that had jumped on the trail since Lake Tahoe. Super nice guy (they all are, depending on level of delirium they can be downright entertaining). This guy was awesome, because he was a like-minded flower geek and told me to look out for the Carniverous Butterwort. There's quite a few species here that I have know idea what they are and this was one of them. It kept me amused for quite a few hours and I kept talking to myself in a British accent telling stories all about the Carniverous Butterwort. I sound so much better educated when I speak in a British accent. I figure Carniverous Butterwort would be a wicked good Trail Name. I am a delicate flower!
Oh yes, PCT culture dictates that people get a Trail Name. Mostly, it's a name that's given to you from other thru-hikers. I'm holding out for a name. Currently, I'm still Leslie from Banff. I reckon my name should be Southbound. It's self explanatory!
This is going to be a quick 2 part post - photos to come from the I-Touch.
Happy Trails! It's a 4 day jaunt through some beautiful wilderness to my next stop: While Pass.
Happy to hear from you!
I was up on Alta Mountain yesterday (sweltering, I can only imagine how it would feel with a full pack) looking at the PCT section between Kendall Katwalk and Spectacle Point - the Alpine Lakes Wilderness is one of my favorite places in the world, I'm glad you got to see it in all its glory (northbounders tend to walk through it in a late September cloud).
The forecast says we will hit the 90s again later this week, so get ready to cool off in every lake and snow patch you find. ;^)
It must be spectacular!!! Hope it doesn't remain too hot for long.
Just been reading how wet this area can be in Sept. Good choice you! What a dampener to be finishing in a spectacular area in the rain.
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