Monday, July 31, 2017
Who neros on a 93-mile thru hike? Me.
Well, it’s just the way my itinerary worked out. Day three was only a 3-mile day. Well, actually, it ended up being about five because I had left the trail a couple of miles short of the White River campground with Adam the day before. But still. That’s a short day! So I totally slept in and took my time getting going and hanging out with Adam. I took a nero. And it was splendid after such an intense day.
My calves especially appreciated the break. They were pretty sore from all that snow walking. You just end up using weird muscles you only put to use in just the right combination when hiking on afternoon soft mountain snow. And I was sunburned, too. Not only is the sun a bit more intense up there, it reflects off of the bright snow fields, too. So I was most likely a little dehydrated on top of all that as well. A short little hiking day was perfect.
I reorganized my food and left about 2/3 of it behind for the next stretch (seriously brought way too much! It’s crazy, this keto thing!) While I was getting my backpack ready to go, Adam pulled out his fancy Coleman stove and cooked up some scrambled eggs and percolated some coffee for me. What a great breakfast!
Before I knew it it was after noon and I was on the trail, hugging Adam a final good-bye – he was heading off to do his own thing, so I wouldn’t see him until my last day.
What exactly is Adam doing while I’m hiking? I don’t know for sure, and neither did he, which was part of his plan. He tossed around the idea of visiting a friend in Portland, but wasn’t sure he wanted to drive so far. He was definitely going to hit up a county fair he found in Lacey, WA where he’d get a corn dog, maybe a caramel apple (where better to get one of those than Washington state!?), and walk the midway (hopefully winning me a teddy bear, of course!)
He also thought he might try to intercept PRT. For those of you that followed my PCT thru hike, you’ll remember PRT (stands for Pacific REST Trail because they took so many zero days). This was a group of fun hikers we met and became good friends with – mostly Adam because he had the Pickle Jar (our car) and met up with them a lot along the way. Anyway, three of them (Dishcloth, Hoop Dreams and Peter Pan) are hiking the last 200 miles of the PCT up to Canada at the same time I’m out here on the Wonderland Trail. (I ALMOST joined them… But this trail was pulling me hard.) So I hope he gets a chance to meet up with them and provide some trail magic like he does – totally “Aloha-ing.”
So who knows! I’m excited to hear all about whatever it is that he decided to do. He seemed pretty happy with how loose his schedule was. Maybe he just holed up in a hotel room and watched movies! I’m sure whatever he’s doing, he’s having a great time.
So back to the WT – I hiked uphill from where Adam dropped me off to Sunrise camp, and on the way I met a super-friendly guy who is friends with Doodles, a girl I met on the PCT, who also thru-hiked that year! Small world! Unfortunately I forgot to ask his name. I need to get better with that!
When I arrived at the Sunrise area, it was bustling with day-tourists because it’s pretty close to a wilderness center, parking lot and day hike loops. There was also a group of teenagers staying at the group site there, so there was a lot of people around. But I didn’t care. I was just content with everything.
I arrived at camp around 3:45pm and picked a nice little site (#8) at the end of the individual campsite area. It was a short walk down to Shadow Lake where I just sat for a while and watched some kids swim and day people take photos of all the flowers. The black flies came out and I got a few bites, which really swelled up. One bit me on my pinky finger and it swelled so big that I couldn’t bend it! Nasty little buggers. I retreated to my tent for a reprieve, wrote in my journal and took a nap.
I had bone broth for dinner, as I wasn’t super hungry, then walked back down by the lake one more time. It was empty, now. I laid down and just enjoyed the sky and the quiet for a little while, then retreated to my tent, getting to bed around 9:15pm. I didn’t set an alarm.
Tonight I love sleeping in my tent. Especially when I don’t need my rainfly.