Day 139: Wet Washington

August 31, 2017: Hiked Miles 2349.2 to 2374.5 (25.3 total)

I woke up a little before 5:00 this morning and felt pretty cold. I reached down to feel my sleeping bag and it was soaked. I touched the tent and it was wet too. I sat up and put my face to the sky, but didn’t feel any raindrops. But the sky was dark and there were water droplets dropping off the top of our tent into it. I waited a minute, thinking maybe the rain had already passed through and we had somehow slept through it. But then I realized that it was just mist. We were stuck in a giant cloud and could have been getting misted on for hours without realizing it. I woke Colton up and we threw the rainfly on, but it wasn’t much use. The floor of our tent was already covered in puddles and everything was soaked. We snuggled back into our sleeping bags, which luckily were still dry on the inside, and tried to go back to sleep, hoping the rain would stop. Both our stomachs were growling with hunger, but eventually we fell back asleep until about 6:40 when I woke up for good. 

The air was still a little misty, but not as bad as earlier, so we packed up our soaking wet tent and gear and sat under a tree to make breakfast. With the frosting from Jamie, we made some extra sugary Funfetti poptarts. 

And chugged some coffee to try and warm up. 

Once we set off hiking we did warm up, but the sky stayed dark and misty and kept raining on and off throughout the morning. 

But it was a nice change to our usual weather and it definitely reminded me we are now in Washington. 

Everyone we passed looked pretty wet as well, so it must have been a fairly good size cloud cover. 

After a few hours the mist let up and we started seeing patches of blue sky above so we stopped to take a snack break and attempt to dry our tent out. 

It helped to get some of the moisture off, but was still damp when we rolled it back up. Oh well, you do what you can. 

After another hour or so, the clouds started to disappear and we finally emerged on a ridge with a clear view.  

The sun felt wonderful. 

We climbed the rest of the way up the hill and came upon lots of colorful leaves.  

It was nice to see another color besides green. 

And even found a hungry little friend.

We stopped near the top of the hill to take a break in a nice open and sunny area and had an awesome view of Mt. Rainer. 

And the fire we had to bypass yesterday. 

Guess the rain didn’t make it everywhere. 

We layed our sleeping bags, clothes, and tent out and this time they dried in no time in the bright sun. 

After lunch we kept hiking up and down, up and down, every hill possible. I’ve noticed that this seems to be the trend in Washington. Just when you reach the top of a steep climb, you head back down and it’s just as steep of a descent. There are more ups and downs than California and Oregon, but they aren’t as long, so you’re constantly changing your elevation which I think is kinda fun and easier than climbs that seem to last forever. Or maybe our legs are just stronger so everything seems easier now. 

We got a good view of the Cascades up north as we hiked. 

And then the trees changed a bit and we could see the sun for awhile. 

We cleared out of the trees to walk beneath some powerlines and were greeted with such a beautiful sight. 

The colors and the sun were magnificent after spending so much time in the dark today. 

I finished Room, the audiobook I have been listening to. It was awesome. I didn’t want it to end. I definitely recommend listening to or reading it. 

We were getting a little tired and hungry towards the end of the day when what should we come upon, but more trail magic!

Theresa is a local hiker and has hiked lots of sections of the PCT and she just so happens to have a cabin in the area. She had spent all day serving up trail magic and was getting ready to leave when we showed up, but stuck around to give us some grapes, strawberries, soda, chips, and chocolate milk. 

Such a blessing and a perfect pick-me-up to energize us to finish the last two miles of the day. 

But it got cold really fast so we didn’t stay long before taking off to finish the day. 

We climbed another steep hill and from the top could see how far the smoke from the fire had spread in just one day. 

A lot of wind on that thing. I don’t think they’ll be getting ahold of it anytime soon. So sad, especially because it was caused from a lightning fire that started over two weeks ago and could have easily been put out long before this. 
We made it to our campsite for the night just in time to eat dinner in mostly light. 

We ate dinner with a couple other girls we have been flip-flopping with and found out one is actually from Big Bend, a small town only an hour away from where we live! Such a small world. 

We said goodnight and I noticed that some of my stuff was already getting damp just from the night air so I insisted we put our rainfly on. Better safe than sorry. Plus it keeps all the heat in and keeps us a lot warmer in our tent without having to wear all our clothes to bed and burrow in our sleeping bags. 

Tomorrow we hike into Snoqualmie to pick up a package we shipped to ourselves with the last of Jamie’s goodies and shop for a couple more supplies and maybe eat some real food too! And hopefully not find out there is another fire closure. 

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13 thoughts on “Day 139: Wet Washington

  1. Hope the smoke clears out as you journey north, especially around Glacier Peak. You guys are an inspiration, and I’ve enjoyed following you from the beginning. Thank you for sharing your adventure. It’s almost over, but the trail saved some of the best for last. Enjoy and safe travels.

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    1. You are so sweet for offering again! We only have probably one more stop before Canada in about 6 days and then were gonna try to go back and do whichever of the fire closures are open and the section we skipped in the Sierras but our itinerary for that is kinda up in the air right now because we don’t know which sections will open up when

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  2. You guys are in the best shape of your lives even though Colton appears as though he just escaped from a POW camp. When you complete this adventure you will need to find another quest such as hiking from Canada to the tip of South America. An Oreo burrito? That was interesting. You guys are simply awesome!!

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  3. I have been following your trip since the beginning. Great blog. I day hike twice a week in southern ca. In fact, I just missed encountering you. I hiked from the KOA campground just south of Agua Dulce up towards Mill Creek summit on 5/11. Looks like you were on this stretch on 5/12. Also, I was near Baden Powell on the day you were there. This is the first year I have acted as somewhat of trail angel by bringing extra water for PCT hikers and shuttling hikers from Wrightwood back to the trail, and vice versa.

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