July 14, 2017: Hiked Miles 1273.8 to 1295.1 (21.3 total)
It was a pleasant morning to wake up to the sound of the creek and the feel of the cool summer mountain air.
I started breakfast while Colton ran off to use the bathroom, aka a hole in the dirt, and he came back a few minutes later pissed off saying he had went to dig a hole and stuck the trowel right into someone else’s covered-up hole and got poop all over it. I thought this was the funniest thing and started dying laughing. He didn’t think it was so funny and took the trowel over to the creek to clean it off. It stopped being funny when I remembered that I’m the one who carries the trowel all day.
After that, we finished breakfast. My peanut butter didn’t look as appetizing anymore, but when you’re starving it doesn’t really matter.
We started hiking around 8:00 and had a nice pretty morning hiking across the top of the mountain we camped on and enjoying each other’s company.
A lot of times we are working too hard to talk while we hike, but sometimes the trail is easy and we get to talk about life, our dreams, and pretty much everything else we could possibly talk about. And it’s just really enjoyable. I can’t think of another thing in the world I would enjoy more than spending a gorgeous morning hiking through the mountains and talking with someone I love.
We passed through some pretty flower fields.
We popped out in a clearing and wandered along the ridge for a bit. The sky was pretty hazy to the west from all the fires.
Going down is so hard for me mentally because I don’t have anything on the trail to think about. So I write lots of imaginary stories in my head and think about all the great food I want to cook and places I want to go someday.
We saw two rattlesnakes on the way down within about 30 feet of each other. That got Colton running away like a little girl.
We saw a bunch of deer that bounded away down the steep slopes like it was nothing.
Towards the end of our descent, we passed this sign:
At the bottom we crossed some railroad tracks.
A weird little place with one store/restaurant, a bunch of RV’s and little cottages, and some interesting decor. I’ve heard a few different people say it can be a creepy town and we didn’t feel like stopping for lunch, so we just passed through.
We crossed over the Feather River and started climbing right back up the other side of the canyon.
When I looked back at Belden and instantly started sweating, I started to think a burger, a drink, and a dip in the river didn’t sound too bad anymore.
We passed by this cool old stamp mill:
Our climb was steep and we weren’t wasting any time getting up the hill.
After four miles of climbing we were drenched in sweat and poured cup after cup of water over us when we reached a stream. You know your body is hot when cold mountain water doesn’t cool you down. All the sudden a dog ran up to us and went straight for the stream.
His owner followed him down and told us they were section hiking the trail and that the dog was a search and rescue dog. And he was a rescued dog too. I was pretty impressed and think it would be neat to train a search and rescue dog someday.
We kept hiking up into the hills and lucked out with the sky becoming a bit overcast.
Colton didn’t waste any time eating.
We were excited to enter into Lassen National Forest, not only because it means we’re getting closer to home, but especially when we realized that exactly one year ago today we had climbed Lassen Peak together, not long after we started dating.
We passed over a bunch of pretty creeks.
The trail was less exposed with helped with the heat.
But not before passing these animal remains right on the trail.
We made it to camp which thankfully had a stream nearby, set up, chugged water, and ate dinner. Luckily we packed an extra dinner because Colton was starving and ate two meals. Hopefully his Top Ramen still help replace all the sodium he sweated out today.
He passed out fairly quickly since his head was still killing him, but I surprisingly wasn’t tired so I stayed up and updated my blogs since I finally have service for once. And of course I was starving an hour after being stuffed from dinner so I snacked on some peanut butter and Reeses Pieces.
We have a clear view of the stars again tonight and only a three mile climb to the top of this mountain in the morning which we can knock out while it’s nice and cool. Although I have to admit, I really loved the hard, ridiculously hot climb we had today. I excel in hot weather and love pushing my body to the max and it just felt so good to push so hard today, sweat like crazy, and feel my legs burn. That’s part of the reason I decided to hike the PCT is to seriously kick my own butt and I love when I feel like I am. Although I’m sure my legs won’t be loving it in the morning.