Day 150: The Beginning of the End

September 11, 2017: Hiked Miles 2569.4 to 2586.3 (16.9 total)

We got to bed around 11:00 last night. I almost felt bad, like I had stayed up too late since we’ve been asleep before 10:00 lately. The bedroom in the cabin we were sleeping in didn’t have any windows and I almost felt a little claustrophobic not having any airflow. I’m so used to sleeping outside now and having fresh air that I feel a little trapped sleeping inside. But luckily, that doesn’t stop my tired body from sleeping. I konked out in no time and slept great until about 4:15 when I woke up wide awake, having slept so deeply in a real bed. I tossed and turned and dozed a bit until about 7:00 when I got up to make some tea and read for a while before Colton woke up. Perfect morning in our perfect cabin. I could get used to this. 

When Colton’s alarm finally went off at 8:00, we packed up, said goodbye to our favorite new home and joined Mike and Nancy inside their house for coffee and a fruit, yogurt, and museli breakfast. Colton swears that Greek yogurt is the nastiest thing ever, but hunger will make people do crazy things. He decided to try some, and with the museli, some honey, and the fresh peaches and frozen blueberries, he decided it was actually good after all. Just look at all the stuff we’re learning out here!

We enjoyed a relaxing morning chatting and enjoying each other’s company and then Nancy drove us down to the post office to pick up our resupply package a, little before 10:00, which is when it opened. Of course we had to stop at the bakery on the way down too. I got an almond milk vanilla latte, something I have been craving for weeks, and a pumpkin cream cheese muffin. 

And Colton got a bacon and cheese croissant and a kuchen. We were both very happy.

Nancy dropped us off in town at the post office and we said goodbye and thanked her for the great time. 

Since it was Monday morning, and the post office is only open over the weekend on Saturday from 12-2, every hiker in town has been waiting til this morning to get their package. There was already a line when we got there, right at 10:00 and we still ended up waiting a half hour to pick up our package. And we even had a surprise package from our friend Leslie who sent us a couple Mountain House breakfasts! Best surprise! And they’re ones we haven’t tried. 

I’m glad we got to the post office when we did because when we left there was a line of about 50 more hikers out the door. We opened our box, and sorted through our resupply and then headed up to the lodge to finish our bakery snacks and wait for the shuttle. 

And people watch. 

Always my favorite. 

The shuttle showed up and filled up quickly. We were jam packed in there with all our backpacks sitting on our laps, every seat full. At least we were all clean, it could have smelled a lot worse. Of course, the shuttle stopped again at the bakery on the way out of town, but by this point, we were finally sugared-out and refrained. 

The shuttle dropped us off back at the trailhead around 12:30 and loaded up with a whole brand new group of hikers. 

It’s crazy how many hikers we are seeing all of the sudden. 

Most people sat around finishing their food from the bakery so we got a huge leap start on the bubble by taking off right away. The storm has definitely passed and it was a hot afternoon with a lot of climbing to be done on our part. 

A couple miles in we passed by this gorgeous lake that looked very appetizing to jump in. 

But we pushed on, gotta get to Canada at some point. 

Now that the smoke and storm have passed, we have much better views of the surrounding mountains, most of which look like this:

We stopped for lunch around 2:00 at a nice campground with picnic tables and pit toilets! We enjoyed a quick lunch and some fresh carrots from the garden that Nancy had given us. Yum! I forgot how good carrots are.

We took off soon after lunch since we had got a late start today and still wanted to get a decent amount of miles in. 

The rest of the day was warm with lots of climbing. Down, cross a creek, and then back up out of the canyon, over and over, slowly gaining elevation.

We passed a ranger on the trail in the afternoon, the first one we have seen on the entire trail. She was checking to see if hikers had permits to camp since we are technically in North Cascades National Park and all camping here is permitted. But we were planning on hiking past the park boundary before camping so we didn’t need one. She also wanted to know if we had seen any bears, which we hadn’t, and she was oddly disappointed to hear. 

We hiked on into the evening and even ran into a fellow hiker who we had met the first week on the trail who had flipped up to Canada to hike south and hopefully avoid any new fires closures. It was great to see her again. 

We finished our day around 7:00 at a wonderful little campsite right by a creek that we had all to ourselves. 

We set up camp, cooked dinner, and got in our tent just as it was starting to get cold outside. Colton read, I blogged, and we were back in our routine just like that. 

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