August 13th, 2021
Mile Marker: 2063.5
Miles Hiked Today: 17
We slept in this morning and headed to Black Bear Diner for the 3rd morning in a row at 8 am. Here we met Sam, Babs, and her father for some pancake yumminess. I ordered the same thing once again not being able to pass up their delicious pancakes.
After breakfast and everyone getting ready, we loaded into the two cars and took off down the highway. After about 20 minutes we also picked up Goldie to join us as well.
We were faced with another fire closure decision leaving Bend. There were two areas (one that would be opening at midnight) that were closed for hikers due to fires last year. In between the two fire closures there was 20 miles of walkable trail.
Our original plan was to skip all of it since it didn’t seem feasible to get a ride for the 20 mile section and/or hitch out. Then we heard the first closure was opening and thought we would hike it.
Upon further consideration, we realized that we were still in a pickle. If we couldn’t get a ride aligned there was a very slim chance of us finding a ride out of the trail. And 150 miles to where the trail started again. The only road was a long stretch around with no other access points.
We decided to stick with our first plan and go ahead and skip all 65 miles instead. Especially since we had 2 cars that could take us to Olallie Resort, the start after the second closure. Most people had to skip up further to Government Camp.
The drive from Bend took us close to 3 hours.
The closer we got to Olallie Resort the more of the burn we saw. It looked terrible.
Once at the resort I went into the general store and talked with the lady working it. She let me know that the burn was from last September so it is all still very fresh. Hence why some of the trail is closed.
I could tell she still had ptsd from the fire last year. The smoke that was currently around freaked her out a little and she said she felt like the fire was coming again. She also mentioned how now her biggest fear is fire.
I felt for her and hoped that she wouldn’t have to endure another scare like that.
We said our goodbyes to Sam and Babs’ father and then headed on our way. It was close to 2 pm, a very late start but all of us were relaxed. None of us had an immediate deadline and felt comfortable backing off to only 25 miles per day.
We set out through some of the past burn zone and ashy trail. I was happy when the trail finally turned back into a thicker, more green trail.
It stayed like this for majority of the day. We hiked from water source to water source and when we reached our second one 10 miles in, we decided that we would go 7 more to the next one and call it a day.
It was getting late and none of us wanted to get into camp late. It was time to relax and finish out the trail easy.
It was a pretty chill day and my legs overall felt fantastic. My shin splits were acting up a bit but nothing like they were coming into Bend so that was good news.
Plus the more often we get into camp early the more I can stretch and rest it.
It was weird only doing 17 miles for the day after doing so many miles for so long. I feel like I have a ton of energy and find myself wide awake tonight.
Looks like I am going to be doing some major reading!
Iz and Oz