I had turned off my alarm so I was curious to see what time I would wake. I lay awake from 6.30 just dozing listening to the birds and wind. The sun was up and I could feel the heat through the tent, its no good I need to move
I soon packed up and tried to leave but i couldn’t find a trail out I was sort of in a maze. I went this way dead end I went that way dead end grrrr.at last I found the trail or rather the paradise trail that should meet the PCT.
BUT WOW this trail went through some spectacular meadows and as I climbed the views were amazing. Mountain tips poking out from low clouds and to my left Jefferson in the middle hood and to my tight mount Helen sand Adams wow.
This landscape is just awesome OMG Awesome.
I began to go down and eventually emerged back on the Pct .fantastic
I passed several day hikers who were on their way to Timberline. I began to follow a creek that bubbled and roared as it made its way down the gorge. At last I exited into sunlight but the roar of water was even louder. In front of me was another fast flowing river that came from mount Hood, again the waters were white and fast this time I didn’t hesitate I ploughed straight through it was deep cold and very fast and I almost slipped even though I had kept my shoes on. Phew I said to myself
I was on the other side that was rocky and sandy. I followed the trail but somehow lost it as I was now at a dead end.i backtracked but still couldn’t find it Bugger . I walked back further then spotted a pile of stones a Pct marker .i’m back on trail then I came to a crossroads I decided to take the alternative route that passes by Ramona Falls
Wow the falls are amazing they drop from a basalt pillar I stood in wonder for a few minutes took several photos then continued on this trail again will rejoin the Pct.As I travelled on about a dozen or so day hikers came past me all smelling of “Clean” most had gone on via the Ramona Trail head.i pushed on and on till I came to another swollen glacier river but luckily there was a fallen tree over this one.
Once across the trail began to climb sharply up and up and up then switchbacks back and forth and up and up .I needed a break so found a nice log to sit on .I dropped my pack then half filled my cup with huckleberries then added cereal really bloody tasty. Then back to the climb .Every now and then mount hood would reappear. It is an amazing mountain and I can’t help but stop and stare at it. But I need to walk so off I go
I pushing on when I walk into John hes flip-flopping around on the trail and is now heading southbound. He updates me on my fellow hikers progress and where they are. Cheers John and a way I go further up the trail is some trail magic a ice box but sadly all empty. I sign the register and notice Tartan is ahead, I may catch him .I cross over the next trail head and about a dozen weekend hikers are just beginning their hike
I quickly pass them then run into Tartan and his son getting water. Hiya Tartan .hi ya Snail we chat for a while then i’m on my way as i’m trying to crunch miles .I need to speed up but this section is a roller coaster up and down and up and down and i’m now feeling tired. I catch up with more hikes from the same gang and quickly pass them,then i see two hikers , who are putting up hammocks they look very comfortable.As I hike on, I meet the guy who has organised the hikers we chat for a while. He asks me what mile i am shooting for. I explained I go to 6.30 then look for a flat spot then I check my mileage.
But really I wanted to get to 38 but it was getting late and I was tired.
6 pm and still 4 miles to go will I make it ? Or shall I stop..No I can do this do I pushed on.i was soon on the ridge with fantastic views all around.
I can see mt St Helen’s, mount Adams and mount Rainier Whoop whoop I shouted .I am not far now come on snail I shouted at myself. I dropped down and into a forest and yes I was here. As I walked into the trail head I noticed two ladies sat at a picnic bench .I asked were they staying they said yes.Do you mind if I stay too?
I put up my tent i then began to unwind and cook dinner
Then a third lady joined them with a dog it was mother and two daughters. They had hiked from crater lake and were finishing in cascade locks
I ended up joining them for dinner , they all had a great sense of humour and so we laughed a lot as we ate and chatted
The three of them and the dog were sleeping in a tiny tent and there was just me in my huge tent lol. We chatted for hours until it was dark and then it time for me to turn in
But I couldn’t help but smile when they all attempted to get in the tent with the dog , Once in they giggled away for hours