June 30, 2014
Phone battery issue nearly resolved with the addition of a 5oz 7000 mAh Poweradd battery pack. It has enough juice to charge my Nexus 3x to full. I’m adding a second battery pack in Seiad Valley just because I like having a working phone more than I like being ultra light.
The last 3 days have been some of the most beautiful days I’ve experienced on the trail. Trinity National Forest and The Marble Mountains are absolutely breath taking and the weather was perfect for crushing miles. So naturally I crushed miles. I ran into a few familiar faces, Carlos (Halfdome), Brett, Hot Foot and eventually Thirsty Boots, an older triple crowner who’s been keeping my pace and passing me periodically since Carson Pass area. I also ran into Tela, a section hiker who jumped on the trail a few days ago.
It took over 1500 miles but I observed my first bear on the PCT. Right around mile 1586 at a creek. I was sitting contemplating soaking my feet when I see this large black blur dart between shrubs. I thought it was a dog, I had seen several that day. I jumped up to be careful and could see Hot Foot coming down the switchbacks. As he got close enough to speak with I asked if he saw a bear, and sure enough he did. That’s it.. A black blur out of the corner of my eye.
Enjoy some of these incredible views:)
During this stretch I managed a 38 mike day followed by a 40. My two highest days yet. 35 mile days after starting to feel like 25s once did. I thought the numbing pain on the pads of my feet would never get better but alas, they are!
I had plans to resupply in Etna then continue on without an overnight but lounging on the additional bed in Tela’s room made me reconsider. It didn’t help that Tela was this crazy beautiful intelligent outdoorsy laid back chick who I felt a strong draw towards. She’s also a lesbian I might add… Men lucked out on that one.
After enjoying Etna, Tela and I headed back into the mountains. I shook her down and she dropped 8lbs from her pack so I encouraged her to crush miles with me. She pushed herself and kept up as we worked or way to Seiad valley. In the end though she felt unprepared to do big miles, understandably, and I ultimately dent bad for encouraging her to a thru-hikers avg on her 10th day on the trail. Hike your own hike they say, it’s something you hear a lot on the big trails and it’s an important thing to remember.
We recouped in Seiad Valley with Halfdome and others over night and as the day went on we all slowly trickled back to the trail except Tela, she zeroed to let blisters heal up.
The stretch between Seiad Valley and I-5 crossing on Oregon gives you some great views of Mt. Shasta. I caught up to everyone on the second day out of the valley and finished off the stretch called out with Recon & Halfdome. Chilling in Ashland now drinking some noble coffee and trying to figure out how to get my clothes laundered and new shoes… My shoes are on the verge of falling apart.
Enjoy the pictures!
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