2028 – 2040
I slept next to a creek. It wasn’t so cold that morning. I slept hard, I guess making up for those shivery nights.
Right away I had tricky creek crossing, the first since the Sierras. I walked upstream awhile and didn’t find a safe way across. Downstream, I found a good set of stepping stones. A few miles later, I came to Russell Creek. A chute of rushing water tumbled over boulders. And a dead horse, its head underwater, its rear end bulging and swollen like a hippo. I read on Guthooks about the horse, and how it got there. Back in July, a trail rider and her horse fell down the ravine. The rider broke one leg and had to be rescued by helicopter. The horse broke all its legs and had to be shot. Poor horse. How traumatic, I wonder if that woman ever gets back on a horse after something like that? I wonder why that horse carcass is still stuck in the water like that? How come a bear hasn’t come to eat it? Or vultures or eagles or crows?
When I was cycling in India, I saw vultures eating dead cows. The huge vultures with feather collars to keep the guts off their shoulders. It’s not a sight I’ll ever forget.
Later I saw a girl I’d seen at Kennedy Meadows. She’d flip flopped and was walking south. We gave each other updates about the road ahead.
I spent most of the day climbing 2000 feet over eight miles. Which doesn’t sound like much but it was tiring. A huge eagle flew over, hovered above me. Do birds get cold up there? Finally I got around the shoulder of Mt. Jefferson. Another mountain was behind it. Maybe that’s Mt. Hood.
I could’ve kept going but my feet hurt. I saw a pond on the map and set up camp next to it. The dirt under my tent felt suspiciously icemud hard. Another cold night.
One thought on “Pct day 125”
I meant to read your PCT adventure as it happened but I got distracted by my cross country bicycle tour. So now, months later, I read your blog posts all the way from the beginning. EPIC. I am an occasional day hiker (mostly along the mountains outside DC). Every time I hike a section of the AT I see through hikers just cruising along with monster packs and I wonder how amazingly fit they must be.
Reading these posts reminds me of those days alone on my bike in the northern plains. Solitude is the sweetest thing.
Best of luck.