August 28th, 2021
Mile Marker: 2438.7
Miles Hiked Today: 24
I woke up this morning, peaked outside my tent, and was filled with giddiness. It was a clear blue sky. Yay!!
I sat in my tent staying warm in my sleeping bag and enjoyed my delicious oatmeal and coffee mix. When I was packing up my tent I talked with the gentleman whose tent was next to me. He is part of a group of hikers that sets out frequently to hike in Washington. He talked about hiking the Sierras and asked me questions about the PCT. He said that thru hikers have an aura about them and recalled a time he watched a thru hiker hike down a mountain looking fast and smooth like they were on a skateboard.
He made me smile. I always wondered what it was that made people instantly know we were thru hikers.
It was going to be a good morning, I just felt it to my core. We started the hike up around 7 am and I could not wait to get to the summit. I knew the view was going to be stellar from the small views we had down below.
The higher I climbed the more I could see these big mountains and the glaciers that covered them.
Just before reaching the top I got a fantastic view of a pika! I have been waiting to see one since starting in Washington because I hear their high pitched sound all day but can never see them.
This little guy stayed out and let me take a nice long look at him until he disappeared behind a rock. He was SO cute!
We finished the climb up and decided to sit out on some rocks while we dried out our damp belongings.
I could have sat there all day. There was a nice cool breeze that kept me from getting too hot, an incredible view, and great company. Not much more I could ask for.
I sat there feeling grateful and happy. These last couple of weeks is all about soaking it in. Appreciating what is left, appreciating where we came from.
Eventually we decided that we should keep going as we had planned for a 25 mile day. We spent the next 7ish miles heading back down the mountain to a creek.
Once there, we spread back out for some lunch and rest. Time was getting away from us, but none of us really seemed to care. We were taking our sweet sweet time today.
Close to 3 we headed out with 11 more miles to go before we got to camp.
We had some more climbing to do but I found myself preferring them again than the downhills. The downhills made my shin hurt so I was always wanting to climb instead.
We crossed through beautiful meadows and lakes, I can’t get over how incredible Washington is.
Towards the end of the day we had 5 miles left to camp. 3 of a hard ascent and then 2 down to our camp spot.
However, once we reached the top of the mountain, we stopped to have dinner and then decided that it was the place to camp for the night. There was a magnificent sunset and we knew the morning sunrise was going to be even better. 2 miles wasn’t much of anything to add on for tomorrow.
So we set up shop and watched the sun disappear behind the mountains.
I don’t know if today could have gone any better!
Iz and Oz