I slept so well oh my god I’ve done it.. Whoop whoop yes I’ve Completed the PCT
I still can’t believe what I have achieved from the chubby chap with the enormous pack to the slim bloke with a big pack of today
I lay in my tent not really knowing what to do.
Well let’s start with tea. bugger my water bladder had leaked in the night ,Due to me not putting the lid on properly so a quick mop up then tea
I then emerged into a warm Canadian sun and began to pack up other hikers were doing the same
Then Da-vinchi appeared and I drank more tea with him before Foxxy emerged
It was weird and sad saying goodbye to my new friends. But I wasn’t quite finished I still needed to get to manning Park. So after several lengthy goodbye hugs I hoisted my pack onto my back and strolled off down the trail. Crossed my first bridge then battled through an assault course of a trail,
Not sure why but I began to fly down the trail and in three hours was standing at the highway
I turned right and walked to the lodge I was at Manning Park
Fingers crossed my packages were there. Yes YES YES WHOOP and there was Early Bee fantastic
I booked in at the hostel and Early Bees Brother in law carried my large box for me.
I opened the boxes and thought Christ how am I getting all of this home I packed and unpacked till at last my pack was in its transporter
Now hopefully the rest will fit in my other pack and fingers crossed I can get it on as hand luggage
Job accomplished I jumped into the shower then attacked my beard with some scissors before attempting to use a razor wow what a handsome chap
Next I went to see if I could sort my flight. The nice receptionist let me use her phone but I felt embarrassed as I was on hold for 30 minutes. But hurrah flight done bit expensive but I’m going home
Dinner and a beer next. I joined early bee and his family and had two meals as I was ravenous. As we ate, a stream of other hikers arrived Bowie. Mr President. Brunch etc
I finished up and went to the lodge to email and do Fb and book my greyhound bus ride to Vancouver in the morning
Phew soon be home.
I fancied a couple of beers but the shop was now shut so I wandered back to my room.
I was too excited to sleep so I sat in the lounge and flicked through the TV, watched some of the cycling and had a coffee followed by a hot chocolate before hitting the sack
8th September Woke refreshed I put on tea then packed up I was pleased that my tent was dry as I thought by camping on grass and by a small pond it would be wet by condensation We woke to a cloudy day and we were not sure if it would stay dry all day!! Da Vinchi and i were on the trail by 8 am we pushed on out of the traps but I could tell that Da Vinchi wanted to get there as he was pulling away into the distance I can normally keep up.but not uphill so I let him go and slowed down. The first part was up s lot of up almost seven miles up but wow every corner or saddle revealed just amazing scenery. Mountain range or valley. Id slept really well but today I just didn’t have the engine in my leg and struggled up every slope.
It can be quite sole destroying when you see you friend miles away across the next valley. But hey it’s been like this the entire adventure. early on I’d of tried to keep up and burn myself out but not any more I marched on stopping to take several photos and to enjoy what I was seeing oh and to grab a handful of huckleberries Down I’m going down. The trail began to snake its way down through the woods eventually coming to a large cross roads. DA Vinchi was waiting for me here with a couple who were also hiking to Canada. I ate breakfast then we hit the trail again and yet another climb. Up and up we went at last the sun began to shine and I began to melt phew I looked for a good spot to stop and loose a layer stuffed my shirt into my pack emptied s litre of lemonade down my throat then set off after Da Vinchi The trail wound its way across the valley touching the rims of the mountains, occasionally I’d have to cross a steep scree that swept down the mountain as far as you could see
Some were wide to walk on others were scary and a mere foot print wide. On I went still climbing and still being presented with fantastic new mountains and other views I had to keep stopping to stare I eventually caught up with Da Vinchi and we had lunch just love eating with the amazing picture before me. We relaxed then time to walk .we were making good time and mileage Yes we were going to do it But there were still plenty of miles to do. But it was down and apart from a water stop we should hit the monument by about 6 pm
I chased after Da Vinchi but soon lost him on the never ending switchbacks I then met s funny marmot ( Steve Adam Adam ) But every time raised my camera he shot into his hole. I carried on down the switchbacks then saw a beautiful lake hadn’t seen a lake in weeks the trail meandered around it. By the bank I saw Da Vinchi getting water do I did the same 6 miles to go snail we can do it in two hours. We headed off and down and again Da Vinchi was soon out of sight .I plodded on occasionally stopping to grab s handful of huckleberries or two. The sun was still hot as earlier it had gone black and cold and in thought it may rain I pounded down the trail then I noticed Da Vinchi and fantastic it was Foxxy we carried on together getting closer to our goal then we met washcloth and frizzy coming back .frizzy said Early Bee may still be there! ! That would be fantastic as we both started on the same day back in April We marched on and on then met Pedi on the way back I gave him a huge hug said congratulations and then pressed on At last the monument we spent about an hour taking crazy photos then Early bee re-joined us bloody brilliant .now it was time to open the “Champagne” that a friend Gwyn had sent me thanks so much Gwyn I had carried this large glass bottle from Stehekin and I wasn’t going to waste a drop. I popped the cork and took a huge swig it tasted divine I passed the bottle to Da Vinchi then Foxxy then Early Bee before taking it back. thank you again We then took more silly photos before for well over an hour before moving on to camp I set up camp then cooked supper by the log fire. Fires appear to be allowed again now hurrah Tomorrow 8 miles to manning park and soon home I hope
7th September I woke about six thirty after a great night’s sleep everyone else was still in their tents I quickly went to the loo then fired up my stove .Aya then emerged. So did I snore she asked? I had to laugh and say yes .Then Da vinchi joined in with yes but it was more of a gentle purr ,Rather than the roar of Legs behind you !! we all laughed Soon Aya was packed and heading for the trail. See you both up the trail she said. Da-vinchi and I were taking our time. And soon Nature and legs were heading out too. Best we make a move too Da vinchi off we went it was about an hours climb to the first saddle as we crossed about a dozen switchbacks. I eventually crossed over the saddle and wow the views of all the mountains and valleys was amazing
Nature and legs were taking a break so I joined them for breakfast while waiting for Da vinchi .Then Da vinchi disappeared I called his name and was worried he had fallen . But he had been to climb a small peak. We set off again to cross the next saddle. The views as we walked were amazing. It was such a beautiful clear day and getting warmer. We marched on the trail wide and flat Soon we were going down. But slowly as we both didn’t want to injure ourselves when we were so close to the finish. Ah water. We filled up as the next reliable water was 21 miles away I had 4 litres yes a little heavy. Further up the trail we met two couples hiking we ended up chatting to them for some time before resuming our walk. We could tell we were getting close to a trail head as we began to pass many day hikers. Clean people who smell nice Four ladies we met were so pleased for us that they gave us half of their lunch and fruit
At last we arrived at the trail head there was a loo .ranger station and register . Da vinchi and I sat at a table and ate lunch .Then two other hikers appeared it was Mongo and Washcloth Bloody hell guys good to see you both. I’d of thought you guys would have finished. Both of them had missed the water and were out.so I gave them a litre of mine. Then two ladies walked by with two huge pots of huckleberry’s I said to the guys ask if they have any spare water. But as they were very shy I asked for them. Excuse me Mamm would you have any spare water? Why of course .so they both followed the ladies to their car. Then to my amazement Pedi arrived with Frizzy I hadn’t seen him since Kennedy meadows. And wow he looked thin but a good thing we all ended up chatting for far too long. Before we hit the trail almost 2 hours later and of course a big climb.
But as always a fantastic views .it was now almost four we agreed we would go to six.so we pushed on hoping we could set up in the sun We crossed one more Creek and topped up our water for the night. We had one more climb then we could see our camp Tents up we both relaxed and cooked dinner except I managed to knock mine over so had to bury it then start again. We finished up with hot chocolate laced with Canadian Whiskey Tomorrow we will walk and see what happens we may make the finish or we may camp a mile short and finish the day after
6th September Woke up to a cold cold morning not much fun now my sleeping pad has failed me quickly took s bathroom break then fired up my stove. Da vinchi was stirring too as I began to strip down camp. Then a hiker called Aya passed by see you guys up the trail she called. Then smooth operator came by morning Snail morning Da vinchi Snail you’re the man carrying that champagne you going to spray it everywhere.
No way had I said if I’m carry that far I’m not going to waste a drop!!! Da vinchi and I joined the trail it was going to be a morning of ups an afternoon of downs and an evening of more ups just perfect we hadn’t gone far on the climb when I needed to stop to remove a layer as it was roasting all ready. Up and up we went as usual the views got steadily better.it wasn’t long before we were climbing over the saddle wow what amazing views into the next valley and immediately across you could make out the trail winding its way up the other side of the mountain That looks like our trail Da vinchi We took a 5 minute break and both stared at what we we’re seeing Then we began down with was steep and fairly slippy due to the gravel. Down and down and down it very much reminded us of the desert in fact we could of been in it no trees rocky and sandy Then it was the climb up the other side it started shallow then climbed sharply there were numerous springs so we decided to top up before continuing on. The trail began to get very narrow and Sharpe drops to the sides and in places it was very scary where the rain and floods had washed away the trail. I had to cross these large gullies carefully as the rock was loose and sand slippy. Gradually we made our way across and up we were now heading for granite pass. Lunch soon Da vinchi? Yes snail when we get to the top 20minutes we ploughed on and up then we began to drop down into a small valley. Great spot for lunch so we diverted to the grassy bank Aya was there too do we invited her to join us for lunch sadly she had recently broken up from. Her husband do she was out here hiking just Washington we relaxed over lunch then headed back to the trail. Aya joined us but didn’t have our pace so we told her where we were camping if she wanted to chow down with us At last we came over the saddle of Granite pass it was now down whoop In the sand was a Canada marker we both took pictures then headed down the trail we passed a couple who were camping nearby and chatted to them for a while. Then we topped up with water. The next section was a lovely trip through the forest which was .nice and cool and still down .Da vinchi and I told each other silly jokes and the miles seemed to fly by
We then caught back up with Aya who was taking a break so we stopped too We checked our maps as both our GPS don’t seem to work in this part of Washington .We thought another 5 miles but would water up in 2 for the evening .At the creek we met the couple from earlier as this is where they were camping. We filled up our water from the creek and as we went to leave Aya arrived we told her we were going 2.5 more miles then camping for the night That next hour was steep and hot and my backpack began to hurt me plus there was Huckleberries yummy We were playing the marmot game too Alan Alan Alan. ………Steve Steve we had about six switchbacks to go up then at last the campsite. It had rom for about 6 tents Da vinchi soon had his up and mine shortly after. Then Aya arrived she put her tent behind ours. We all began cooking tea. Then long legs and Nature arrived room for two more? Yes plenty of space .They set up their two tents then began cooking too Then Foxxy appeared in the dark he had done 40 miles and wanted 2 more so hiked on The rest of us headed for bed Zzzzz
5th September squirrels woke me up with their chatting .I lay awake watching the tent get lighter till I needed a wee It was a gorgeous morning and a nice dry tent hurrah I packed up but I was in no hurry as Da vinchi was yet to emerge and we planned on hiking together to the finish
We had snacks then hit the trail by 8 am we had planned on doing 15/16 miles a day our mere 3/4 miles yesterday was poor due to excessive beer consumption in town I blame Da vinchi lol From here to the finish is still going to up so I was dreading the day but With Da vinchi leading he tends to pull me along so it wasn’t long till we arrived at the camp that we should of stayed at last night opps lol We decided to have breakfast here and fill up with water. Then we set off again following the roaring river and then climbing higher The sun was hot and I soon needed to stop to shed a few layers phew it was just gone 10 am and already 80° We climbed and climbed the views spectacular as ever and views down the canyon even better. We then came to a large creek there was a rope bridge across but we forded it instead.as it was quicker.
The trail was well maintained on this section so we were able to make a good pace and seemed quite popular as we were passed by several section hikers .we hiked on and steadily upwards till we both decided it was lunch time .we saw a nice clump of trees but when we arrived there it was taken by other hikers so we continued on looking for another suitable spot. At last. We dropped our packs and relaxed ate lunch before continuing on. We had done 12 miles not a bad morning’s work .we agreed we would hike to six then camp and so we were both chilled. Further down the trail we stopped for five minutes and I did my signature in sticks in the dirt I was very pleased with that .we then pushed on till we came to another large creek crossing but the bridge had been wrecked.
But luckily there was a large tree across a little further downstream so we crossed on that. We were making good progress but we stopped at four to water up. Before moving on us. The trail was still up but gentle and in the distance we could here traffic so we were getting close to the road and the trail head. We emerged near the road and hoped that there may be some trail magic but sadly not. Washington has been a bit poor on trial magic compared to the rest of the trail. Well you don’t expect it but its great when it’s there. We crossed the road visited the toilet and emptied our trash. There were a couple with two young children chilled out in the back of their pickup they too were impressed with our hike. They offered us water but we had enough
it was then a mile and a half road walk to the next trail head. As we walked into the trail head a couple stopped asked if we were through hikers then gave us a big bag of peanut pretzels that were so tasty we then walked into the trail. And continued up and up .Flat spot Da vinchi we need a flat spot up and up we went crossing several small creeks past the 2600 mile marker whoop .Then yes a flat spot We set up our tents and began cooking tea when early Bee arrived he was going to join us but then found an actual camp spot with fire ring on the other side of the trail. ..How did we miss that lol we ate and chilled and wow better than expected we had done 22 miles whoop but tomorrow is a bigger climb!!!!
4th September Woke up with the sun still shinning that’s always a good start. But I couldn’t get out of bed my alarm went off again Come on snail or your miss the bus I frantically packed up then set off ear buds in I had two hours to catch that bus 5 miles I can do this I crossed the first creek where I had watered up and ploughed on down the trail I felt good and Canada was getting nearer whoop whoop I was singing along to nothing in particular enjoying my 5 mile March but still accompanied by the roar of water. Now and then id peek over the canyon and stare at the cascading water but not for too long I just didn’t have the time Up and down I meandered the clock ticking down on my wrist at last a bridge and signage pointing to high Bridge fantastic I’m not far I crossed the bridge a small climb then down yes I can see the bridge in the distance I was soon crossing it and in the distance were several hikers One waved at me .Great it was artic fox and a hiker called Maddie. As we said our hellos a smart red bus arrived.
Several hikers got off one being French Paul we had a hug said good luck to each other and then he took me to the river to see the trout there were loads of them and shortly they would be running upstream I said my goodbyes and boarded the bus. $ 7 to town. First stop the lodge. Great they had gas (butane) I quickly brought one. When I got back the bus was packed. I chatted to a lady about the area .The next stop was the bakery. Its famous for just being good. I spent fortune or rather I could have done. A huge sticky bun a cheese and bacon slice and a coffee. When I got back on the bus the lady was telling me where everything was in Stehekin the post office .the store shower etc. The bus bumped its way along the dirt track to town passing a recently cleared mud slide!!! At last town I said I’d see her later and got off at the post office I had four parcels. My ice axe (don’t ask) a book, my resupply and some tea. Great I was out of tea so Thanks Bill I then ransacked the hiker box and stuffed my pack. Mm something is missing I went back to the post office to check on a fifth parcel. No but it may be at the store I staggered down to the store and up on the deck. OMG such a beautiful place and it can only be reached by boat ,seaplane or hike in like us The lady on the bus was there waiting for her boat to take her to Chelan She offered to look after my pack while i went and had a shower and laundry. But first I plugged in all my gadgets to charge. As I was walking to the shower I walked into Da-vinchi. So good to see him He was camping up the road so we agreed to meet later for a beer maybe two 🙂 I threw my dirty clothes into the machine then realised I had no soap so had to run back to the store where I bumped into Feast. Beer in 25 minutes he said I ran back to the laundry and put on the machine then jumped into the shower mmm it felt so good
I dried in the sun as no towel then waited for the wash to finish so I could then dry 20 minutes later all done and me clean I walked back to the store I found a nice table brought some post cards and a 6 pack and relaxed in the sun watching people arrive on the ferry and seaplane. It’s just utterly beautiful here I want to come back and do the ferry ride to the next town Then I remembered the missing parcel I was expecting a small bottle of sparkling wine (Champagne) from Gwyn.. I checked inside the store and came out with a large heavy box. I cautiously opened it…Inside was a large glass bottle of “Champagne” Feast who was watching me said “SNAILTRAINER” you’re the man So Gwyn THANK YOU so much it was far more than I had expected The news spread quickly that “SNAILTRAINER” was carrying a large bottle of champagne to Canada And everyone who knows me knows mine is the heaviest pack on the PCT And it just got a lot heavier lol I finished my postcards and was wading through my beer when Da vinchi arrived so we ordered another 6 pack just in case.
Then Omg “Early Bee” arrived this is the other guy that I started with on the 17th of April bloody hell we hugged and gave him a beer and then showed him my shinny bottle of bubbles. Best I wait for you at the monument then snail lol Later we had to sign in to the campsite that we wanted to stay at we thought 5 miles will do to finish off the day. We enjoyed the rest of the day with more beer a huge bag of corn chips and endless bowls of salsa Before it was time to take the last bus back to the trail We were hoping to call back at the bakery to get stuff for tea but it was closed dam and bugger oh well We got back on the bus and headed back to the trail rather gloomy and hungry. We hoisted our packs onto our backs and headed north but it was late we were tired and so we only managed 3/4 of a mile before we both yelled together FLATSPOT!! Lol we put up our tents had a hot drink and we were both soon zzzzzz
3rd September rain was still falling as I awoke I could see a light to my right obviously he was going for it I surveyed the inside of my tent it was damp it was all damp My alarm went off I silenced it too early to move or rather too wet After an hour the rain was silent. I quickly packed up. And emerged from it . my tent looked a mess due to mud Splash. ..oh well I quickly pulled off my sodden fly and dropped my tent..I folded it up trying not to spread the mud. A near impossibility. Okay are we good to go I rejoined the trail and crossed my first bridge over my first Creek of the dsy and began to climb .
I hadn’t gone far when Feast appeared behind me . Where did you come from I asked. He and some other hikers had had a zero at one of the lakes. I said to feast how badly I had been struggling with this section. Feast agreed although he was twice as fast as me.!!! Snail you getting into Town today? I laughed no way I’m taking it easy But snail its only 22 miles. And downhill after this climb I said yeah right .but no ill see you for a beer tomorrow im just going to cruise till 5 pm and enjoy the day But if I get there ill get there. Feast then shifted gear and accelerated away saying see YOU tomorrow SNAIL
I plodded on wondering how does he do that. My pack seems heavier today which is strange as its almost empty! ! But then all my gear is wet and damp After almost two hours I stopped for a break and sat down on a log in the fog before I noticed that I was surrounded by blueberries but these were huge so I soon filled my cup then added my cereal mmmmm yummy As I ate breakfast the fog cleared revealing a huge mountain range OMG just fantastic. As I walked on I could see huge glaciers and snow fields just so beautiful just wow bloody WOW The trail now headed down.i was feeling good then I watched a huge bird soaring in the sky some sort of falcon with white beneath it’s wings. .The further I descended I noticed I was in a large basin on a glacial valley. The remains of the glacier above me with all the rocks boulders and rubbish down below. I made my way across and up the other side. Hmm more climbing up and up and over the next saddle again more amazing views of another fantastic valley.I had more glaciers to cross with numerous melt water creeks flowing down. Some had bridges some stepping stones..I hopped across then began to climb up and out before heading dow My feet began to hurt a combination of wet socks and shoes.in fact they were killing me!! But I needed to keep going switchback after switchback. Hurrah the sun decided to come out. So I stopped glugged down some lemonade. Took off my hot wooly hat and rain jacket. Before getting back to the decent. Feast had said it was flat after this all the way to town, but I wasn’t that optimistic. BUT I was heading down still with my feet killing me . okay lunch. I finished off my last bagel and any other scraps in my food bag Okay lets look at these feet OMG they were in bad shape the left worse than the right. They needed to dry out and dry socks and lots of TLC I pondered for a while .I had a new pair of socks that I was saving Yes I know !!!!!! Carrying spare socks but hey I need them now.I put them on and mmm they felt so good .still sore but not as bad.i hung the wet ones on my pack and set off Luckily my shoes were dry and I needed to try and keep them that way. I marched off down the trail feeling much better. I didn’t even notice the river flowing beside me as it was so gentle and quite until it began to drop and gather pace then it became a roar. .I followed it down then I panicked as the trail looked as if it forded the river. Oh no I have dry shoes and socks I don’t want to wade But no the trail continued down stream where you could cross via a huge fallen tree. PHEW!!
I followed the river on the other side for most of the day .through forests up and down small hills until the sound eventually faded away. It was now 5 pm and as of yesterday I had decided to stop and take it easy plus I needed to rest my feet and hopefully dry out my tent and gear. I walked on for a while until I came to a great campsite but I need water but yes I can hear water . I walked a few yards and yes there was a creek I topped up then walked back. It was still a gorgeous sunny evening so i lay out my groundsheet to dry then did the same with my soaking fly. When both were dry I put up my tent then began to cook my supper it was so good to sit in the hot Sun and enjoy my supper and relax Wow just 5 miles to town tomorrow whoop
Snooze snooze But I was on the trail. By 7.It was a hard slog up. I am so glad stopped when I did as I didn’t pass any flat spots and no water I can’t believe no water! As I can still hear the roar of water far below teasing me .Water water water I stomp off through the fog although it’s very calming almost therapeutic I keep thinking that I am seeing sheep but they are just huge chunks of white rock. Listen. ….I can hear water a different roar…..At last. Its several ice melts I drink and drink (camel up) fill my bottles and now I feel good and much happier. Occasionally the fog lifts to reveal an amazing glacier and snow topped mountains but blink and its gone again.as the cold blanket of fog wraps its way around me. I walk on crossing numerous springs and melts. Typical I think to myself the trail now begins to climb and soon I’m crossing numerous meadow and as the fog swirls around fantastic scenery is revealed again. As I walk I encounter many stupid grouse who wander about in front of me till they feel threatened then they fly off .mmmm roast grouse nice lol I begin to head down but it’s very overgrown so I’m stumbling as my feet find rocks to fall over and I now have wet feet bugger. the trail narrows to almost one foot in front of the other hurting my feet As I descend the fog at last lifts showing snow covered mountain peaks bloody amazing. I stop and stare while taking it all in before walking on but then my watch pings and I stop again for breakfast. 10 30 at last the sun makes its entry nice to see it as I continue on down the roar of water returns I look into the canyon to see milky white water cascading down before continuing on and into more forest .There see many trees down to jump over or get around as I’m dawdling along two hikers pass me The trees in this forest are huge I mean huge I stop and take many photos these trees are amazing One had recently crashed down across the trail I just about managed to crawl under it the size just stunned me. More spots of rain no no. I up a gear lol and continued on till I come to a huge bridge, rebuilt by the forest guys in 2011 .I’d really love to see how they did it and got the wood in to build it. I began to climb up the other side it was almost 2 pm Lunch Omg I cried as I checked my GPS just 11 miles really!! Is that all
Okay lunch done let’s start this climb Up and up and up then along it seemed to me that I was now following the river from where it has come from. The trail was moving up but on a gentle incline I like that But god the trees that I had to climb over there seemed to be dozens some as before are fairly easy others take some doing especially with a large pack there was one particular section where the trail was literally blocked by a dozen collapsed trees So you had to weave yourself through the branches not fun. Spots of rain again no no please wait to at least 7PM
.The trail then headed towards the river .are we crossing again I thought. But no we just skirted around the bank then back up three were some nice camp sites but far too early for me sadly .Then more rain no good I stopped and put on my packs pack and my rain coat. As I was putting my pack on the two hikers from earlier passed me again. Guess they stopped somewhere for lunch I moved on and upwards following the trail. Then for some reason I got a bit morbid I was hoping to do this section in five days taking it a bit slow easing off the gas a little and enjoying the penultimate section. But I’ve been pushing myself to exhaustion and I’ve barley been managing 15 miles a day and it’s not fun chasing the clock or miles Now don’t get me wrong this section has been amazing and I’ve taken 100’s of photos it’s just been really tough for me and probably just me as I like to dawdle and enjoy the scenery I’m just glad I didn’t book my flight from skykomish or id be in deep poo And then I worry about my boxes not being in Canada so I can’t book my flight till I know they are there So really I’m worrying about nothing As it’s all out of my hands and I’m still at least another day away from Stehekin And now its pouring and I’m still climbing .wish I had more speed okay typical I’ve now watered up as I don’t want a repeat of yesterday and typical there is a spring or stream at every corner oh well I plod on up and up it’s like a stair way to heaven but without the stairs I am now going into the fog and at long last the torrent roar of water has gone weird as its been with me for most of the day Up and up and up I promised myself I would walk to at least 6 pm them look to camp. Did I promise that FOOL I trudged on getting wetter and wetter stupid promise .the rain seemed to have cleared the fog and it was silent except for an occasional jet sound I keep looking up to see g if I could see light (means I’m almost at the top) But no .I craftily looked at my watch 5.22 . Is that all I marched on trying to avoid puddles even though my feet were soaked. Look a nice camps spot still too early grrrrrr stupid promise. I then got a burst b of energy from somewhere and began to stride off I was on a mission but don’t ask me what. Up and up I went jumping the occasional log of crossing yet another stream Ping At last but I was still marching I think I would’ve gone on to seven trying to claw dome miles back when Boom Went the thunder and the sky turned black Mmm that’s not good oh a campsite A fairly large one. And as I dropped my pack the rain held a truce I soon had my tent up my sleeping pad blown up .sleeping bag out all my kit inside .shoes & soggy socks off I pulled off my rain jacket and put on my fleece and got straight into my bag as I was cold. As soon as I was in the heavens opened and torrential rain fell it was like a machine gun and Chinese firecrackers hitting my tent in lulls I made tea then another hiker arrived like a drowned rat Mind if I camp next to you? Not at all help yourself Sun for tomorrow please
1st September A good nights sleep but i seem to be like Austin Powers im missing my mojo I woke with my alarm and just lay there. .the next alarm went and I cancelled it .There wasn’t the sound of rain but camping close to a creek it was sodden with condensation.its no good, to finish the Pct I need to finish I put on my stove and packed my damp kit into my damp pack put on my wet socks and put my feet into my wet shoes. Okay its not late I can do this I drank my tea . waterproofs on all round .Lets walk……. I made my way out of the camp site and through the forest dodging under dome huge fallen trees.i was feeling good but I just didn’t have any oomph .maybe its all these climbs every one says this. Section is a tough well im finding it so..I meandered through the woods staring at all the different mushrooms, toadstools and fungi all amazing colours and shapes. It was not long till I heard the sound or rather roar of water.i couldn’t see it but I knew I was following it.oh my god it was the tree jumping game and to make it more fun lets do it in water
.I must of crossed 2 dozen ice melts whilst manoeuvring over and around logs.The roar was now getting louder meaning I was getting closer.i came over a large bank and there it was a main feed from a glacier all milky white Luckily there was a bridge well almost it had collapsed in the middle but I was still able to cross with care..I made my way across the swirling waters and over the other bank guess it was time to climb and climb I did. After an hour I stopped took of my rain jacket and woolly hat had a long drink and continued up and up oh and up oh sun there is sun and I can see mountains and snow wow up and up Then Wow more mountains came into view they were all around. I continued to climb into another forest but it was steep omg it was steep Both my feet hurt i’m guessing because of wet socks etc I dropped some pain killers and climbed higher. OMG the views were even better sadly I dont know what they are called but they are stunning. I climbed over the saddle and wow even better views of more mountains and fantastic valleys. I began to climb down through more trees phew .ping went my watch. Yes that will do.i ate cereal and chilled for 10 minutes before back to the trail. I had to Ford another creek do not get wet snail.!.Phew safely across Oh and up we go and up and up zig zag switchback after about an hour I reached another saddle and it was Omg OMG OMG Moment the mountains stretched out in front of me I was stunned by what I was seeing I sat down and just started Just fantastic. Then I began a very very long trek down .slowly to begin with as it was snowy and slippy and a long drop lol At 2.30 I stopped for lunch checked my feet and rested I still hsd a long long way to go down so that I could climb up the other side lol After lunch I began my decent again I passed a gorgeous lake but as it had snow on it it was brr but a beautiful blue colour. Just by the lake set several hikers I said my hellos then continued on as I crossed another Creek I disturbed a huge trout well it looked like trout but more pink.i Could of caught him but i needed to walk as my mileage the last few days has been crap down and down I went in places it was clay and due to the recent rain it was scary. I must of been going down for hours but every now and then another mountain or waterfall would catch my eye. Again I heard the roar of more water and I came to another large bridge over another glacial melt I checked my gps I had done 14 miles and it was 4.30 really I said to myself I had expected more. No what I should of done was to fill up with water . (Like I usually do when i’m tired so I can camp) But I didn’t. Water was in 9 miles but I thought well there is bound to be a spring and it was 4 miles up there is bound to be a flat spot NO NO NO I set off up and it was a steep up and up and up puff puff switchback after switchback higher and higher but no water and no flat spot after two hours i was knackered please just a flat spot but nothing I walked on and on then thought I’ve had enough On one switchback it was fairly wide so that’s where I stuck my tent. I had 1 litre of water so 1 cup of tea and dinner and now for bed Still not a good day but better
31st August I slept well apart from a 2 am bathroom break. The wind was howling and buffeting the tent but I soon dropped back off. I was actually cold in the night or rather I wasn’t very warm as normally im toasty. I was hoping to wake with the sun’s rays streaming into my tent but sadly it was rain Bugger I shouted to know one. I sat and listened to the drumming on the tent and watching the rain drops race down the side’s then silence it had stopped. I gathered up all my damp kit and shoved it in my pack before lighting my stove. As the water boiled I pulled off the soaking fly and wrung it out a little then quickly packed up my tent I fasted both tent and fly to my pack Today I was wearing my wet weather trousers hurrah I hear you say!! Yes I’ve carried them from Oregon and today I have them on. I drank my tea packed my stove I was good to go. Not as early as I wanted but rain had stopped play that seems to be the weeks excuse plus my right ankle is giving me some concern So a few I’s and I hit the trail and headed into the fog I hadn’t gone far when the rain returned with vengeance .I was so pleased that I had on my waterproof trousers. 🙂
Of course today’s trail was up, some big. Its funny there seems to be more ups than downs on this section At last i’m going down but due to the rain it was like a slide so I had to walk even slower than usual as it was like glass and the mud was deep in places to add to the fun!!! Phew mastered that .To my right I could faintly make out a large lake not so beautiful in the fog so I marched on and of course up. I slept really well but I didn’t seem to have the energy today and struggled up the trail. Up and up I’m sure there were some fantastic things to look at but I could see nothing. Up and up and round and up ping went my watch I’ve done two hours then Omg huge huckleberries I stopped and picked a bagful ill have them for breakfast. I pushed on I wanted more miles as the last two days have been very poor. I’ve gone from mid 30’s to low teens. Up ahead I saw three hikers who I soon caught up with. It was three ladies who were hiking from Stevens pass to Steheken 100 miles I wished them luck and said your see me again as I’m stopping for breakfast shortly .I slowly dragged myself up the next few hills, as the fog lifted there was a huge mountain called Indian fist I think. But blink and it vanished again into the fog .I climbed higher and higher then wow the fog cleared and you could see all the mountains and the valley .The Mountains are the Glacier Mountains. The rain had stopped so I sat on a large stone and had breakfast staring in awe at the site before me One by one the ladies past me. .I slowly packed up and returned to the trail. Brrrr it had got suddenly very cold a combination of me stopping and the glacial mountains. I tried to up my pace to warm back up But I’m slow when going uphill but the higher I went the more spectacular the views but again you need to be quick with the camera as the fog rushes in and hides them As I climbed and came around a corner there were half a dozen horses well not all horses some were mules with pack on. I said my hellos then continued up .I was heading for the rim .and as I put out my foot the rain fell even stronger and the wind blew the trail climbed steeper and I was engulfed in FOG such Fun!! As I climbed mountains on the other side of the valley appeared and disappeared I was too engrossed in my climb to get a photo as it would be gone before I COULD say SMILE Omg this is tough well perhaps just for me puff pant puff it seemed to go almost up to heaven. Then I met a Son & Dad coming down. I hope you have enough sunscreen I joked they laughed and joked back about don’t get burnt. At last I was at the top staring down into a valley. The sun was doing its best to shine yes come on sun I need my tent drying. I stopped for a five minute break then continued around the rim. OMG the trail now dropped down into an old glacial valley it looked amazing I stood starring for a few minutes then began my decent. Again the distance was soon erased by fog as I zig zagged my way down and down crossing numerous melt streams. I wanted to go faster but again the trail was slippy or covered in stone so it was my normal plod ……But I was going down and by my GPS a long way down I just wish the rain would stop so I could dry out Several hours later my tummy decided it was lunch I couldn’t make up my mind if I should stop or press on but then a perfect spot appeared. I ate a bagel and cheese finished off some chips nuts and a kit Kat I checked my GPS id only done 12 miles really I normally do that by 10.30 it was now almost 3 pm I’m just not going to do it .I was a little miffed with myself .The trail was still down if I pushed it I could maybe do 3 Mph that’s 9 more miles by 6 pm making 21 still poor .I liked this plan but the trail was just too slippy I didn’t want to risk injury and fail this close to the finish .But I did go as fast as I dare. I was now joined by a creek that gathered pace as it raced down the mountain. Then a hiker past me and he was running he was actually running I couldn’t believe.. Bugger I thought I’m just going to plod so I did.
The trail down was littered with fallen trees I imagined him just somersaulting over them. .I was now in my favourite type of forest old and covered in moss like expensive astro turf on rocks trees I then emerged on a bridge the water raced beneath all milky white on the other side stood s huge escarpment like the walls of a huge castle I crossed the scree then back into another enchanted forest I walked on and on enjoying the solitude until the silence was shattered by the roar of more water.
I came to another Creek and crossed by another bridge, upstream was filled with many fallen trees as if’s huge torrent had knocked them over like pins I walked on but I was tiring and just wanted some tea I decided the next water I’d top up then camp About an hour later water, it was a little milky but I’m sure it could make good tea so I topped up then crossed the bridge a few hundred yards there was a new bridge and on the other side the perfect campsite okay I haven’t done the miles but this will do Please can I have some sun tomorrow I made tea and relaxed I will sleep soon ready for tomorrow’s big climb