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Hi Hi Hikers!

Welcome! I’m Cedar, a thru-hiker and a trail chef during the on-season, and a writer, storyteller, and facilitator in the off-season.

I’m a human being, practicing getting there by human doing. Attempting 10 thru-hikes by the time I’m 40, and offering a candid look into what it’s like to live on trail.

September 20, 2017
Snoqualmie Pass to Mile 2397 (Snow Town)
Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hike: Day 138

Snowy, wet, and in a cloud. There is so much fucking snow everywhere.

We made it 7 miles out and had to camp because the boys spent 2 hours playing Monopoly, giving us a 4pm start. I wore a poncho over my raincoat and pack. It’s only the $5 yellow gas station kind but it helped immensely in keeping things warm. We set up the tent in the dark in the freezing, wet, clumpy snow. Underneath us, falling on us from the sky, falling on us from the trees.

Met Thomas, the worst human ever, who waltzed into the Alpine Club and started scolding everyone as if he were a school teacher who needed to assert his authority on those mangy kids. The nasaly droll of his voice as he continuously asserted how uneducated we all must be since we were unkempt. How we must be freeloaders because Mark made us breakfast, because we stayed at the cabin, because how entitled must we be to accept a handout from anyone. He told us all the important things he had to go off and do. His professorship at some school. And his impossible expertise in color theory and the vibrational hues of auras. Oof.

Mark, the one who welcomed us into the ski house, was incredibly generous. Driving into town and getting ingredients, making breakfast for the whole group—eggs, bacon, cheesy scrambled eggs, toast, hash browns, on and on. We chipped in with labor and money, but what a surprise to wake up to! It was delicious. And then, Thomas.

We spent the better part of three hours working Thomas to try and keep the peace. Distract him by feigning interest in his asinine drawl. Vice introduced me to a new term here: grinding. I could only think of the hook in the N.E.R.D. song 'Grinding', and while I watched Alex and Vice grin through their snarls instead of choking the shit out of Thomas, I understood perfectly. Grinding. That thing you do in social situations when you are stuck talking to the. WORST. person in a 200 mile radius. The person who has no idea how intolerable they are, and nobody's ever had the heart to call them out (gently or aggressively). Grinding your teeth together as you smile and nod and hope the scene will end soon. There's a soft place in my heart for the person doing the grinding, and a soft place in my heart for whatever the grindee went through to turn them into such an insufferable human.

We knew the weather was supposed to storm for at least another day, but with Thomas in the house, there was no chance of us staying put. The game of Monopoly dragged on and then it was time for us to shit or get off the pot. So we headed out. Into a freezing storm of clumpy, lumpy, wet, dripping snow.

Before bed, I made coconut cream with honey, ghee, and vanilla in it just to warm up. It took me from a laying huddled up in my sleeping bag scared about how I would stay warm overnight to sitting up with my bag just around my legs. I shall call this drink, 'Hot Drink'.

We also have a tree in our vestibule. We came up the trail to Vice and Boathouse (who are much faster hikers), and they said there was nowhere flat to camp, but that the trail only got worse from here. They had painstakingly cleared the snow away for us, from a spot of trail next to their tent. I was grateful, but worried it would be too exposed with how much snow was coming down, remembering the collapsing tents of Mount Laguna. I convinced Alex to set the tent up under a few closely clumped trees. There was a little brother tree that only fit in our vestibule or underneath the tent. So, inside the vestibule it is.

Welcome back to trail!

Wet Gear and Secrets

Snoqualmie Pass