September 26, 2017
Mile 2497.3 to Mica Lake (Mile 2518.2)
Pacific Crest Trail Thru-Hike: Day 144
I want to remember the moment of this morning when I woke up not excited about walking in gold wet clouds and rain but decided not to hit snooze anyway. Instead, I turned on my light and Instrumental Megamix (starts with Planet Earth II Suite by Hans Zimmer). I went outside to pee, the song ended, and 'Under the Stars' from Lion King came on. I looked up, and my. god. The sky was all of the stars. I can even see the Milky Way!! So we're not in a cloud or even under a cloud! The sun could be out today!
We packed up from the high meadow we camped in, with only a few more hundred feet of up before the trail followed a ridgeline for a while. I went before Al to get a head start, and as I came out of the valley the sun started to rise, and the red huckleberry bushes mixed with yellow alpine grass and the giant expanse of big sky. Holy f. Nothing to do but just stand there in awe.
Finally taking a break for what feels like the first time in days. It's sunny, beautiful, crisp, the perfect fall day.
This morning I met a runner who said he was on the longest run he's ever been on (25 miles). Turns out he's a cheesemaker at Beecher's (Pikes Place, Seattle) and gave me fresh cheese curds tossed in pepper and truffle oil. His name is Bryce, his dog is 'Segundo'.
Washington's resemblance to the Sierra is uncanny, except here we're trying to do 25 miles a day, and in the Sierra we relegated ourselves to 15. If ONLY we had the good weather to drop it down to 20, because WASHINGTON IS SO FUCKING HARD!
During the aforementioned break, Sam, Vice, and Boathouse walked up. We talked about not being able to get into Stehekin on Day 4 (Thursday the 28th) no matter how many miles we pull, so we might as well not push so hard and enjoy our last few days of nice weather on trail. As a result, we only did 20.9 miles today. I'm okay with that because every joint in my body feels like it's about to pop, snap, rip, dislodge, or generally fall apart.
We're having a campfire with a lake to one side, Pikas chirping in the distance, and a panoramic view of the mountains all around.
Friday, we plan to go into and out of Stehekin and get as many miles behind us before the rain as possible. If we have any luck, the forecast will push the rain out a just a few more days, though I feel like normally rain always comes sooner.