July 23, 2014
1262 miles total
Last night the wind picked up. As I heard huge pinecones fall to the earth, I had to rack my brain to make sure our campsite was going to survive. We had set up in a clearing, with very little debris. We got lucky, I can’t imagine a foot long several pound chunk of tree hitting a small single walled tent. It was nice to hear the wind though the trees though.
The morning was cool and the hiking great. We headed down hill to begin. The switchbacks were nice and the views to the trees below beautiful. Eventually we hit a big bridge, and a rushing river below. The Middle Fork Feather river was perfect. We ended up lounging in the river after we rinsed our salty clothing and dirty socks. The water was a perfect temperature to sit in as we soaked up some sun.
As we pulled ourselves away we discovered it was lunch time. We had only hiked like 5 miles but my stomach was growling. So we ended up eating lunch in the shade. Finally it was time to hike, and we set out on our first of two climbs.
Today was beautiful in many ways. My favorite being so much flowing water. There was the river, several creeks, and many cold wonderful springs. I wish I had more time to sit by them all and bask in the sounds of running water. There is something about it that makes me relaxed. I got in as much time by them as I could but we had to sleep going.
We knew we would have to hike into the evening due to our break at the river. The later part of our day was a 3000′ climb up over many miles. The views to the valley below were great. The trail kept gaining elevation, but the views made up for the climbing.
I stumbled upon another rattle snake today. It took me a bit longer to process what the noise was than it should have. But even after the fact I let out a yelp. Snakes eww. We luckily escaped unharmed again.
I met Arctic near a spring that wasn’t on our maps. The cold water was a delicious bonus. We both filled up and continued on to Lookout Rock.
It was another magical spot. The view was the best way to end the uphill portion of our hike today.
Tonight we sleep up near 6’000′. We often joke about Mount Washington back home, it is the tallest peak in New England, here we are at a site that sits about the same elevation. But it seems to be lacking the charm of that beast. It might be a bit chilly tonight… But I am not afraid of the “world’s worst weather.” We’re pretty lucky.