Day 80: Last Town In California!

July 29th, 2021

Mile Marker: 1670.8

Miles Hiked Today: 26

Sleeping next to a river is the best sleep medicine I can have. Once again listening to the calming, rolling river put me instantly to sleep and kept me asleep all night.

We woke up at 5 am this morning and were ready to rock and roll. We had a 14 mile decent into the small town of Seiad Valley, our last town in California!

I was ecstatic. On the AT we crossed over states so quickly. It always gave a sense of accomplishment so I was ready to be crossing over into Oregon. It is time for a new state!

The trail had us on a gravel and paved road for the last 6 miles before town so Journey and I cruised easily.

The town of Seiad Valley is extremely small and almost doesn’t really feel like a town. They had a post office, general store, and a couple restaurants. All the people we saw in town were also hikers. I had wondered if this is one of those towns that kind of survives off us hikers since the PCT goes right through it.

We arrived around 10 and had breakfast at a small diner and had an incredible blackberry milkshake. I also peered around at a table and recognized a hiker named Old Soul… a woman I met on the AT!! I was thrilled to see her and she initially didn’t recognize me because I now have long hair she said. It was so nice to see her and chat for a little bit!

The original plan was for me to get my packages at noon when the post office opened and then head out. However, we could not get over how hot and humid it was. We were now around 1200 feet of elevation and the heat was outrageous. I was sweating eating my breakfast if that helps out it into picture.

I grabbed my boxes from the post office. One of my own sent from my sister. Thank you again for helping me out Carissa!! And one from Preston and Abigail.

I met this couple from my dear friend Alicia when I was researching the Appalachian Trail. They were friends of her and she knew that had hiked it before. Preston and Abigail were immediately on board to have a Skype call with me years ago and answer all my worrisome questions about through hiking!

Now, here I was in their neck of the woods in California and they wanted to send me a package!

It was honestly the best box filled with goodies for each person in our tramily. Since I wasn’t back with them yet, I bounced the box further up north for the town of Bend! I can’t wait to re open this with all of them!

Preston and Abigail, I cannot say thank you enough!! It was such a thoughtful box!

After getting the packages and sorting out our resupply, we headed .5 down the road to another restaurant/lodge to wait out the heat and get some more food.

The restaurant didn’t open till 2 and it was incredibly humorous as each hiker showed up they would stand out front in the misters to try and cool off.

The original plan was to relax until 5 and then we would head out for another 15 miles.

As per usual, the trail is incredibly unpredictable and we are always changing our plans.

We were told that the hike up the other side of the mountain was overgrown worse than what we had experienced coming down the mountain into Seiad Valley and that majority of it was poison oak.

None of us hikers were really looking to mess with poision oak nor were we going to put on layers to protect us from it in this kind of heat.

There was however, an alternate route up a gravel road that could bring us to the same location.

I had also gotten ahold of everyone before me and found out that they had taken the road as well and recommended we did.

So that’s what we decided to go with.

Right at 5 pm we started heading outside to pack our bags and we could see a thunderstorm going by in the distance. One of the ladies that worked at the restaurant came out and asked us to wait till 6 pm before heading out to make sure the storm doesn’t go our way. She said if the lightning gets bad, it could start a wildfire very quickly and that it would be best to see which direction it heads.

So yet again, we waited it out to see what would happen. We know locals know best.

At 6 pm we checked the storm and could tell it had moved through and in a different direction so we headed out. We had 12 miles to cover and we were flying up the gravel road the whole time. I tried my best to stay with Journeys pace and my little legs were pushing a 3.7 mile per hour average for majority of the climb. (Yes I was super tired by the end of it)

There were quite a few other hikers who had all recently arrived as well. We tried to be quiet as there were some who were already asleep.

Tomorrow we cross into Oregon and I am SO stoked!!

Iz and Oz

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