Day 120. The bridge of Gods

12th August
I woke early too early and then dozed till 7 am .I wandered off to the park to have a last shower. God those showers are good really powerful. I put my shorts on and air-dried the rest of me .before wandering along the river bank. As I walked back I came across  Endure another brit. .he was still waiting for his shoes to arrive at the post office.  I called into the garage and grabbed a coffee before heading back to Shrek’s.
I began to pack up god why do I always have so much stuff .I emptied my tent onto the picnic bench and began to sort again .do I really need this. I dumped rubbish and extra food I put into a hiker box. Hats looking better I said to myself. I had no switched back to my bigger pack so everything now fitted in :0)
I still had a box unopened so I took it to the post office to bounce.
Once back at Shrek’s I dropped my tent tied it too my pack and I was good to go. Strange Bird was cooking more hash browns so I joined him for the left overs and lion King then appeared with coffee.
I caught up with my blog then I had to go. I hoisted my pack onto my pack said goodbyes and strolled out
I just wanted some cheese and bits then I was good to go.
I was so looking forward to crossing that bridge. As i crossed the road I met two hikers coming from the post office. I gave then a quick run through of shreks. The best pubs the laundry where the loos and showers were. Then I headed for the bridge.
The toll booth lady greeted me like an old friend  and high fived me told me I didn’t have to pay and wished me luck
I stopped and took a few photos before striding out. Now I was so looking forward to this crossing but as I walked. Out I was almost frozen to the spot with fear! It was fairly windy and the road was mesh so you could see straight down into the river
OMG I clutched the hand rail tightly and my poles with the other and sort of shuffled across and it was a long way I had to stare straight ahead. I must of looked stupid at last I could see the other side and began to relax my grip on the handrail and enjoy the last few metres whoop whoop I’m now in Washington.
I crossed the road and joined the trail. If I didn’t know better I could have said I was on an English overgrown footpath. It was covered in brambles. Stinging nettles. And those plants with the large balls that get stuck in your clothes and hair and other common English weeds. At last the trail was cut back and wide as. Began to climb. I knew it was going to be a tough day with lots of climbing and of course a full heavy pack
But I was feeling great only 480 miles to go thank you all for all your encouragement and comments. I wasn’t sure if I could get halfway

But now I’m almost there so thank you again everyone .I really appreciate it.
The wind began to pick up then there was a bright flash. Looks like I might be getting wet. Then there was an almighty BANG!!! which scared the shit out of me the thunder was so loud then it echoed all-round the valley OMG…..I pressed on as fast as I could as I was climbing up hill and would be all day .luckily I was in trees so I was staying fairly dry. But I stopped to put on my packs rain jacket and mine .I find I get just as wet with my jacket on as I just sweat
I pushed on for three hours before having to stop for a break.it was a nice spot I could camp here but it was only 4pm I do another hour I said to myself and hoisted my pack onto my back. The rain had stopped but I was still getting soaked from all the plants up and up I went this bit was steep then great my favourite terrain ROCK. I stumbled over it and then some more and then some more .well I can’t camp here. Come on flat spot as my watch pinged 5 pm nothing then more rock to navigate around but this was a long stretch click clack my feet went as I walked over the stone. I was now tired, heavy pack, uphill and soaked .Oh a tent. I first thought it was Da-Vinchi but it was a couple. Would you mind if I was to join you?
The guy was from New Zealand she was Australian but lived in the USA.
I put up my tent and enjoyed a nice cup of tea. Then made dinner
then a familiar face appeared on the trail it was Foxxy. We chatted a while he had spent a few days in Portland
and had a new pack. Then he was off .he was trying to finish the climb tonight. I will finish it tomorrow.
Then Bed

 

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Day 118 Zero in cascade locks

10th August
I slept really well but needed the loo
As shrek has no facilities I had to wander down to the garage
The town was hosting a half marathon so it was a festive atmosphere.
After my garage break I wandered off to the laundry to check how much it was .The owner was there and he gave me change  and a packet of powder
I headed back to my tent to get my dirty clothes, passing tartan and his son heading the other way .Snail  we have soap great I said I. Just getting  my clothes. I rejoined them several minutes later and dumped my dirty clothes into the machine .They were all brand new machines. So washed my clothes really well .we all sat together chatting and passing time as our clothes now dried.
We wandered back together. I wanted to hitch to the next  town to buy some jeans to wear home so was trying to find if any stores sold Levis in Hood River. Strange bird said well I have to go to Portland later to pick up some hikers  im sure we can get some there!!!
Brilliant I said what time you going ?
He’s going lunch time so I decided to go to the park get a shower. $2 but what a fantastic shower..I air dried in the sun then wandered over to the marathon finishing line to be noisy. It was a great carnival atmosphere .I was given a free water bottle and entered several competitions. As I made my way back I bumped into Ridge runner and.    Xxxx from the UK we chatted for a while .
I made my way back to Shrek’s where Strange Bird was ready to go.we drove off passing a large dam a d then followed the Colombia river.wow its a very wide river.
Strange bird then spotted a store that should sell my Jeans  so we pulled in  great  two pairs acquired and a belt.so back to the road As we approached Portland  strange bird spotted s hiker so we picked him up.he was from Vancouver so I said great I may need a place to. Stay.
Your most welcome he said so that great if I need it .
We dropped him off in town. Then went to find our hikers .they were supposed to be at the library.so we parked and sat at a cafe to wait with a cold beer.
Strange bird calls out Hiker Trash to my amazement its Hirobics .hendrick and half and half we laughed  as we keep coming across each other
Soon it was time to head back
We dropped them back by the bridge as they were heading out  .
As I got out of the car at Shrek’s the heat hit  me it was 100° phew .my tent was like an oven..I grabbed my flight details and rang the airline to see about moving my flight .great a weeks notice should be good
As I got off the phone Big sauce appeared OMG  What the he’ll are you doing here. He had taken a week off to go to a wedding  and now was back
Once he was set up we both went shopping I was buying for 25 days
And will post 4 boxes up the trail
Back at Shrek’s I organised my shopping into drops while enjoying a few beer that sauce had brought
Then we went for a few beers at the bar to finish off the evening

 

 

 

Big Sauce

Marathon Finish Line

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Driving Into Portland

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People you bump into

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Big Sauce

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Day 117 Cascade Locks

9th August
seemed to be a race between who woke up first or rather the sound of whose tent zipper moved first
At last I was up guess by seven.   I chatted to the ladies for far too long before  hitting the trail.
I topped up with water then hit the trail. It was down all the way to Cascade Locks,the first part of the trail was steep very very very steep
Down and down i went almost falling, as  it was that steep. I then came to  a small falls  beautiful. I stayed  for several minutes before moving on.
It wasn’t that long before I came to another falls. Not huge  just really pretty  beautiful , I pushed on smaller falls joining  other falls to make  the large river which flowed down the trail

I passed by many day hikers  and  section hikers coming the other way as I followed the river. As I got lower the trail had many campsites, several with tents in.wow the river is now flowing over large flat rock planes. It looks fantastic and then small falls become larger and larger until it drops over and down into a gorge the trail is backed by a solid rock wall and there is a handrail which I sometimes needed. I stared at the falls for sometime before dragging myself away. I  carried on down the trail then turned a corner and OMG there was a magnificent falls and this one you can walk behind .Its name tunnel falls.its high but you can get so close as you walk behind it.The sound is deafening but wow what a sight.
eventually I drag myself away and carry on down the trail which  is now getting busier.Nice smelling people are passing me by.
I am surprised how busy the trail is  considering the trail head is six miles away. But this is a big tourist spot,as i’m walking I can hear lot of noise down in the canyon. I look over and there are about dozen people who are canyoning .This is when you float down the falls and rapids in a wet suit . It’s crazy nuts lol!!!!!
I  crossed a bridge called the high bridge yes it is high . The river runs beneath a very long way down  .I am now being passed by even more people, families,large groups of teenagers .The main  draw seems to be a place called the  punch bow la large swimming hole many feet below . I haven’t a clue how you get to it,but I could see loads of people swimming and hear their laughter.
I carried on down the trail, the  trail head  cant  be far  then i could see parked cars  , great this  must be  it The parking lot was packed as i walked through looking for a place to sit and  take five . I found a spot and  sat  down sat down with my pack. I had barely taken off my pack when i heard a  a voice say.Are you a PCT hiker?
Why yes I am  I said.
Do you want a ride to town?
Yes please. I put my pack in the boot and got in.he had a cold box of soda,water and beer. I  choose a beer.
Shrek’s or the park?  SHREK’S please .(Shrek is a trail angel) I said as I have  several boxes there.
We soon arrived .I got my pack  out and  put it on the grass. SHREK  was away but a guy was looking after the place showed me around. Then the guy who gave me the ride asked if I wanted to see the park,so we drove there .He showed me where to camp if I wanted to, and the  showers etc.
By the park is a micro brewery so he asked if I had time for a beer!!!
Me time for a beer lol yes of course. It was such a a great place a perfect location. We sat in the sun  looking at the Columbia River with a beer Perfect
We had another then he dropped me back to Shrek’s .I put up my tent then asked if I had any packages? I did Indeed. I had 8 boxes,my bounce box..my original stuff I sent from the trial on day four.my tent and  all the other  spare kit I had posted  from the trail plus a few nice things  from home 🙂
It took me a while to sort and condense, i managed to get it  most of it in one  large box that I will send to Canada then home.
Right sorted I then decided to check out the store. As I got there I met Foxxy we did a tub of ice cream each, then went to check out the  other brewery  and get lunch. I had a scrumptious burger washed down with a beer or two. We  both left full and fat,i went back to my tent to organize my stuff. As I was chilling in the sun Tartan and his son mike arrived,we spent the next minutes taking the Mickie out of each other .later Liverpool Paul arrived,i hadn’t seen him for several months so again we caught up on gossip.
Later we went to the bar for another beer or two and I had plate of  nachos which was enormous. We were both chatting away when Ninja tank arrived. He had met his parents in cascade locks and now joined us for Beer.
We chatted for several hours before it was time to call it a night

 

 

 

 

 

Day 116

8th July
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 I walked on a little way then decided to change my wet socks for dry,  have a snack and drink. 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 traveled 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.
6pm  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 sence of hummour 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 as all attempted to get in the tent with the dog then they giggled away for hours

 

 

 

Day 113 Olallie lakes

 

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5 Aug
Slept like a log.too well as I didn’t want to get up …
I fired up my stove made tea then packed up and was on the trail by 7.
First chore  finish the climb from yesterday with fresh legs. As I began to climb I could see I was heading    into snow. .this could be fun I said. To myself. Higher and higher i went meeting many drifts  thst i had to cross but as it was early  the snow ws still  hard. Wow the views up here were spectacular  then I looked over the side ..There were several very wide snow fields oh well I thought here goes  I made my way across the first onr thdn stopped to take photos. Behind me appeared another figure. But I couldn’t see who it was until she got closer it ws freedom. We did the next few  fields together but as she walks like a gazelle  I couldn’t keep up
And im in No rush  and enjoy taking in the scenery. I was standing staring when Shredder appeared .Hiya snail
We walked together for a while catching up on the gossip. Then I said catch you at Olillie  lakes
Several sobos past me seeing a few more now as we get closer to Washington .
Funny my maps were telling me its mainly downhill today but im still climbing and I was puffing s little I checked my watch almost four hours must be time for breakfast
I ate cereal and rested .I was just getting ready to start when Wilm arrived see  you at Olielle lakes
Get the beers in lol Okay snail he shouted as he raced off into the distance..I plodded on  stopping every now and then to eat blueberries  yummy.
I finally arrived at the lakes. Sitting at the picnic bench was Foxxy, Shedder, Freedom. Wilm  and another lady.
I grabbed some beers and relaxed for an hour. The lady in the shop treated us to a whole fresh Pineapple. Grapes. Beans yummy.
The next part of the Trail was closed due to Forest fires so it was a long road walk.of 21 miles. Road walks are tough on the feet but it was the only option I walked out with Foxxy and we hit the road. It was a dirt road first that eventually became tarmac. We walked along but as the time ticked  by I was becoming aware that my kneee was hurting. Mmm that’s not good I need to hitch but this road was deserted .We eventually came to a turn off . Here was a water cash for us hikers I filled up as the next flat spot I came too I   was going to camp. I walked almost another hour before I found somewhere suitable. See you may be at timberline Foxxy
I cleared the ground then my tent was up  As I was getting organised I heard voices on the road. It was freedom Shredder and Wilm I thought that they were ahead but they had been swimming. See you up the trail guys  then i watched them leave.
I made my diner then zzz
Ill finish the road  walk tomorrow

 

Day 112. Shall we climb ?

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA4th Aug
Well what a night I just couldn’t sleep as  it was like Piccadilly circus outside my tent with deer. Not sure if it was the same two going round and round or a deer party.  But I counted  down the hours ill be getting up soon grrrrr
Bing bing bing it was 5 am right im getting up ..I put on my stove and made tea as I packed up and I was on the trail by six.yeah come on snailtrainer  lets do some miles.i bounded off down the trail as I knew I would have a fair bit of climbing to do
The sun was trying to rise but due to all the smoke from the forest fires it was a eairy light..I made my way through a burn area then the climb. But the tred was awful littered with rubbish ie stones ., bark and sticks   and many fallen trees making progress very slow and torturous. Bloody hell I  kept saying as I stumbled  time and time again. It was so frustrating aaaaaahhhh.
Soon I was high enough to see across the valleys. Still very smoky and hazy but you could at least see the mountains. Bloody amazing .I marched on water next then breakfast
I filled up with water there was one tent at the other end of the lake but I couldnt recognise the owner
After breakfast I tried to speed up as I had lost so much time on the climbs.
But the trail was still  heading up but at least I had a nice gentle breeze I passed several weekend hikers  and then I came to the trail closures but they were not very clear well lit would be nice to have you are here . as its quite difficult trying to match my map with theirs. But I was sure I had it right so set off. several hours later I saw a familiar face just about ready to hit the trail.It was Foxxy he doesn’t normally rise till lunch time but then hikes into the night.we hiked together for several hours before I stopped for lunch.
May see you at Timber Line Lodge I called
After lunch I pushed on but the miles were just not falling today bugger.
I then came to a raging  creek It was bloody scary.i walked up and down for several minutes trying to find a safe place to cross. This is glacier water and is milky white so you can’t see the bottom so you don’t know how deep.okay snail I took out my phone and put it in its water proof bag .Then off with my shoes and socks.
Right i am ready I gingerly ssteppedinto the raging water it was bloody freezing and fast the force almost taking my feet away. I really don’t like this I slowly moved one foot along testing the depth with my poles .At last I was across. I sat on rocks letting the sun dry my  feet and letting mmy heart slow down lol.
Right lets go as there was still a lot of UP to go and now the mossies appeared but  In force .I had deet on but then I had just waded through a river so its probably washed off.
I had to stop and reapply before I was eaten ..After that I took more photos of these fantastic mountains. But it was now 6.i hadn’t done the mileage I wanted  ill go to seven pm  but after another hour of climbing I called it a day. Bloody hell as I tried to put up.my tent I was mobbed by mossies. Bug net on  .looks like im cooking in.my tent.Not very  safe but the only way
Tea made now hot chocolate then zzzzz

 

Day 111 A perfect zero in Bend

3rd August

Well what a fantastic sleep although my built in trail alarm clock woke me at 6am .but so lovely to doze  knowing that I don’t have to get up..I heard  Sid and Gail moving around upstairs
Then silence I dozed till  8.30 till needing to get up for a wee.
I went upstairs Gail had left me a note saying help myself to anything
I made tea then went and  sat on the mac. My blog is up to date and photos whoop my face book is up to date whoop so I was feeling very pleased with myself  .I uploaded some  video and more photos.  I was hungry so went and made myself a sandwich .grabbed an apple and another cuppa  tea.I then tried to ring my girlfriend back home in the uk
Bugger voice mail .oh well I left her a message. I then rang my mum . She was so pleased to hear from me aw bless..I then rang my girlfriends mobile .hurrah. we chatted   briefly then she was going to ring me back xx…Ring ring. fantastic. we chatted for about 10   minutes caught up on gossip  lovely to hear her voice. It made my day
I then went and organised  some bits and pieces. Ordered a new copy of yogis book to take home with me  .ordered a new shirt on line as my white one has had it,then compared a few prices of kit  from USA to Uk
The jet boil here is $100 which equals £40 but in the uk its £130 which would equal $250 Why do we Brits pay so much  .
Then Sid and Gail arrived home and  complained I hadn’t eaten enough lol
Sid  then produced the largest punnet of blueberries I had ever seen .which i promptly waded through
Yhen several cups of coffee later it was time to hit the trail. I packed up then Gail proceeded to give me more food, two burritos. Several cheese straws and a packet of spiced mango yummy. I took their photos hugged them both    I tried to give them money but they wouldn’t take any not even for fuel. I was then driven to the high way.i thanked Sid again. Then took my stance on the road it was about 20 minutes but Jed dropped me all the way to the trail head
He was so interested in doing the PCT
I told him he should save and do it
And do it now  before life gets in the way.
I thanked him for the ride and hit the trail it was 3.30 .I  wasn’t going to  go far especially as it was up for 5 miles I zoned out and pushed on ,stopping now and then to admire the view or say hi to hikers coming down.
As  I was taking a photo Wilm caught me up hes from Holland and very chilled. We  leapfrogged each other for the rest of the day. As I climbed the views were amazing but very hazy due to forest fires   SCARY!!!
It was now getting late a flat spot please.i then passed Wilm getting water I gave him a lighter as he had mislaid his, I  then pushed on and was followed by several deer. Funny I hadn’t seen any for days .Great a flat spot as I went to drop my  pack I spotted two tents so went to say hi
It was snow cone and purp  don’t ask lol
I set up my tent then ate my scrumptious burritos  ,cheese and mango then joined the girls for a few Jameson’s  then back to my tent for tea and I chatted to Wilm before turning in
Hey there are to deer outside my tent  lol night

 

 

 

 

 

Day 110 Off to Bend

 

2nd August
I slept pretty well and  woke to the sound of otter hikers heading off  I put out my head to see juicy  pass. Juicy said see you up the trail, and I repeated it back to him. By the time I emerged there was only 1 tent left apart from mine.

Bugger my fly was rally wet due to condensation of being by the lake.I haven’t really mastered   taking the tent down wet yet.
I packed up, lastly I tackled my tent I tried putting it on the outside of my pack   that didn’t work so I rolled it up with my tent, But it will be wet for a day as hopefully i’m staying with Sid and Gail Tonight.

Right all packed and off I struggled along a rough trail, then I came across shredder who was camped on the trail, he said he had given up looking for the spot and camped here. I didn’t blame him as it was a trek   and in the dark. I walked back to the camp I have too much food this is crazy snail I said to myself. Once back at the camp I looked for the bathroom. The place was eerily quite far too early for kids to be getting up lol
I made my way back to the hikers hut and attempted to shake down my pack, I always carry too much stuff although i’m used to t I would rather have it lighter so I put some of my spare food into the hiker box

I was charging my phone when shredder appeared, I couldn’t make my mind up weather to make tea or not I guess I wasted several hours there before deciding to hike out. Shredder was going to take a zero.I decided to walk along the dirt road out and the intercept with the pct then hike to the pass to hitch
But as I was walking a jeep turned up, id offer you a lift to the road the driver said but i’m full. The back was indeed full of gear. But the parcel shelf was empty so my pack fitted in there and I clung to the roof bars standing on the Bumper (fender) and off we went it was bloody brilliant so exhilarating and dangerous we drove past several large ski resorts all mothballed until snow and many lovely little cabins.
One ski lift is still working so the mad idiots   around here can take their bikes up and cycle down OMG scary shit but   then im no adrenalin junkie   well maybe a little.

Soon we got to the highway fantastic I thanked him and then took my stanch by the highway I was heading for Bend. I waited about 15 minutes before being picked up by Rob in his huge pickup. He was a diesel mechanic and could drop me at sisters. We sped along passing a huge lake again just beautiful and then a large burn area from about 19 years ago that almost took out Sisters and sadly claimed the life of several fire fighters.WE passed through sisters, which was a beautiful town but sadly didn’t have what I needed hence off to bend.

Rob dropped me off and I began the hitch again. Again I was soon picked up and was heading to bend. Jeremy   was my driver   but I want sure about him he said he was a pilot and in the SAS but had been shot in the head so I don’t really think he knew what was going on as his stories didn’t match. He was friends with the queen and flew with William   anyway it passed the time and soon we pulled up outside REI Brilliant I thanked him and struggled into the store with all my gear

We haven’t got REI in the UK yet but it’s awesome. Everything you need to play outdoors, Cycles, boats, hikers, camping climbing just amazing sorry Cotswold outdoors but these guys beat you and they have a no quibble returns policy   they will just exchange it. SO people reading this blog from England and Europe if you are wanting to do the PCT don’t buy any kit apart from your first pair of shoes. Buy it all here at REI when you arrive and then it a part breaks or gets damaged they will replace.

I went straight upstairs to get my feet measured. This was very odd the machine said I was a 10” but I have been wearing 13” so I tried on several pairs and decided that a 12 ½ fitted best. Then chose some new socks, new ear buds (headphones) a dray sack for my wet tent fly and some gas.

At the checkout I inquired if my account had been credited for my shoes and poles that didn’t arrive, it appeared not so that was a little worrying as I have about a month left … Hopefully they can get that sorted before I leave as  $300 buck would be quite useful. I paid for my new gear the shoes and socks I am sending up the trail so I can swap if needed or wear home  :0)

Whilst paying timberline arrived. I said id goes for a beer but my next stop was o find a battery for my phone. But in America   nothing is close so the shopping complex I was on was in the middle of nowhere. AS I emerged from the shop there were several couples sat outside. I spoke to the first couple and asked if they were local yes indeed they were the lady was originally from Kent .I asked if she knew where I could get a battery for my phone. It so happens they were off to the AT&T store and would give me a ride. Once there I was disappointed but they suggested Best Buy across the street .so I wandered off there but again sadly no. The couple then offered to drive me to Batteries and Bulbs my last hope. I thanked them and wandered in to the store. Hurrah yes thy did. $30 cool then she preceded o try and sell me a new charger an external battery and a solar charger. I laughed and said great sales pitch but I have all that so just the battery please.

I left feeling relieved but hungry I need food, the lady had suggested Applebee’s   so I wandered off to find. I crossed the road and there it was I went inside it was a smart restaurant selling itself as a bar and grill. I was shown a seat then a pint of cool Delicious IPA was set before me. I ordered a salad to start that was one of the best salads I have ever had. I followed this with Fish and    chips again crisp gorgeous batter and another IPA but different sadly I can’t remember their names but they hit the spot. Now I don’t normally do this but yep ill have the desert brownie and ice-cream Ops it was a little large and so I needed another IPA to help it down don’t know what that one was either. Right now fed and watered I could do with a sleep. I made my way out and found a bench in the Shade where I rang Sid. I told him where I was and he would get me shortly. As I sat under my tree stream of kids mainly girls   all dressed in various Soccer kits  so many teams, where arriving in cars to be fed in subway Guess Saturday is Soccer.

Fantastic Sid arrives and we are on the way to his home with the dog sat on the back seat I have to cove up my watch, as he likes the reflection and like to chase it. WE crossed over the Deschutes river   which was full f families and kids doing what the Americans do beat enjoying their leisure time and into a quite suburb. I so like there housing its on three levels.

AS soon as I enter   Gail shows me to my room hands me a towel shows we where the shower is and then pressed gorgeous yogurt drink into my hand. Then instructs me to put my clothes in the washer.
God that shower was so good. I change clothes and put on a robe then join them upstairs. WE chatted   for a while and find out about each other. Then im given a Mac book and the wireless pass code so I can catch up with stuff then they are both out shopping.  Just as they begin to drive out the thunder starts then hail big golf size stones which I haven’t seen since I lived in south Africa   many years ago. The sound is utterly deafening as they mash down setting off car alarms. I video a bit then get back to catching up with my blog

I am so amazed at people’s kindness and generosity they have just met me and now i’m alone in their house and ill be alone for much of the day tomorrow   just a huge thank you to you both.

All my devices were plugged in both phone batteries charged   and blog up to date and some video on face book I was feeling so good as my blog was getting behind and I wasn’t able to add pictures.

Oh it’s a silly thing but I love it their tumble dryer has alight on inside the drum.how cool is that. I removed my dried clothes and got dressed.

The dog sat  nervously at my side, as he didn’t like the thunder or the hail. He’s a mutt but a lovely soft mutt (big). At once he got up and began to get excited they must be home!
I cracked on with my blog then went to join them upstairs as it was dinner I ate two large bowls of spaghetti with home made pesto and Parmesan then a huge bowl of salad washed down with mirror Pond Pale ale which is brewed locally by the Deschutes Brewery. They are so tasty the ales here and so had to sample a few more   before bed

Think there is about 12 breweries in this town sadly I can’t stay longer lol.

Oh a nice soft bed and I don’t need to get up fantastic    night all and thanks again my two hosts Gail and Sid

 

 

 

 

 

Day 109 Big lake youth camp

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The storm hit about midnight, rain lashing down but I was snuggly and warm in my bag in my tent

Then the wind came the tent was being whipped about but I lay there fairly comfortable   and safe, then I thought mm I hadn’t fastened the fly onto the tent.
I don’t normal bother as  the clips are usually sufficient but as I lay there I began to worry. So at 2 am I got up and clipped them on. Bashed the stakes in further just to be safe and back to bed  and fell asleep listening to the  wind howling  until I fell asleep.
I had planned to get up early but when the alarm went off at 5.30am .but  thought naw   and reset it for six. When that went off I just   dozed. I was so tired I decided to eat breakfast in my tent a first for me and make tea.

As I was drinking it, hikers began to swarm by, bugger I thought I ought to get moving

Hendricks came past followed by Freedom then Shredder who I hadn’t seen since Chester,  soon followed by  half and half , then snake bite. It was getting busy out there so I threw my stuff in my pack and headed out.  Timberline passed me and stopped for a chat , ” Snail how did you get in front last time I saw you were packing up at 4.30″

I got second wind I laughed and pushed on i said , see you up the trail  maybe  the camp .

I set off up the trail , water wasn’t far, I began to climb and met several day hikers going South, and then I passed another beautiful waterfall. My guide said follow the stream back to where it is a spring or rather the source . It wasn’t far and soon I was filling up my water. A huge dog  then appeared he was lovely and so soft, soon his  owners Gail & Sid appeared  we chatted for a while they were from bend a town several miles away. I said I was going there tomorrow to get a few bits. Gail then asked if I had anywhere to stay?

No I replied, she then wrote down her phone number and told me to call when I was done then gave me two sticks of cheese  (YUMMY)

I thanked them then hiked on I began to climb up a huge lava flow that seemed to go on forever. I then met more day hikers to chat too, before dragging myself away

Snow more snow I hadn’t seen snow in a while and it was a little surprising as I crossed from lava flow to another the had to climb down a small snow field.

Then I was in some amazing meadows again, the landscape changes so quickly, I was climbing again to the backdrop of huge mountains sadly I’m not sure what they all are but they are impressive. Then I m dropping down more snow and again more gorgeous meadows and valleys

In the distance stand another three large mountains 1 is Mount Washington and I believe 1 is mount hood but im not sure which.

Now an even bigger lava flow and this one is tough. Tough on your feet and on your shoes and slow as I need to concentrate. It seems to go on and on
I hate this terrain but it is the PCT some that I have done before they have put a layer of gravel over making it kinder for your feet but not here.

AT last a road but then more lava. The trail hen drops down into a small trail head

Fantastic there is a familiar face sat there. It’s Coppertone and he immediate gets up and makes me a root beer float which I quickly dispose of followed by a soda and two bananas

I could sit here for hours but I need to get to the youth camp resupply and get out so hesitantly I get ready to leave, what’s the trail like I ask?

Another two miles of lava snail, then 4 miles of burn

Great I replied and headed out. Yes more lava and sadly up. My favorite combination. But wow as I climbed the views again where stunning.
Then it was more rumblings f thunder Perfect I said to myself bet I get wet this time

Crash went the thunder and a few drops of rain began to fall. I quickly stopped put on my rain jacket then my packs rain jacket then whoosh

Rain fell huge drops.  Really heavy raindrops   and now I was in the burn area and nowhere to shelter I was soaked almost immediately I trudged on   as I had to get somewhere. The rain continued then for more fun it began to hail bloody big hail that hurt. Bloody fantastic I muttered to myself as slogged on and then for even more punishment I had log jumping, climbing etc.

Now in the dry this can be tricky but in torrential rain and hail it’s just not fun. I pressed on …at last a glimmer of sun. My rain jacket is great but when your hauling a heavy pack in it you sweat so I soaked inside. …Oh well

Now  the suns  out  with all its  heat  and  im sweating like a Donkey   but don’t want to stop  I want to press on .I can do this

Eventually I needed a break and removed my jacket. Slurped down lemonade before moving off I reckoned I had 3 miles to do .So I set off with beer legs I was shifting before running into 6 weekend hikers. Then I was off but id lost momentum and was now plodding. But then I got to the 2000 miles marker Bloody hell fantastic I said o myself and the beer legs appeared again and I was off at last the camp.

I made my way to reception to register for my package.

Well what an amazing camp it called Big Lake youth camp. And has many Chalets for hikers. Campers kids etc to stay in for weekends and longer   with large, mess hall etc

I got my resupply and hen he lady let me buy 2 sodas   I then walked to the hikers hut and was amazed to see the usual suspects There was Shredder, Juicy, Timberline, Crusher and several others I didn’t know.
I tried to sort out my food but it was all rushed.

We were allowed to camp but on the outskirts f the camp which when your tired seemed miles away. I was hungry and needed a hot drink but I was too tired so put my tent up and fell in it

 

 

 

 

Day 107 a so so day

30th July
Apart from the male deer bellowing in the night I slept well but still struggled to get up as i kept snoozing my alarm
So I was on the trail by 6.45.mmm must do better!!! lol
It was a cool morning with a light breeze just perfect as I pounded down  the   trail I hadn’t looked at the  profile so I didn’t know  if it was up down or flat…..A surprise lol I had gone about an hour when the mossies descended on me .so I stopped and sprayed myself with deet
But their are some tough buggers who don’t care ,so eventually I had yo stop again and put my bug net on ggrrrrr. off I went pounding down the trail,I haven’t seen any deer for a few days but I guess they are there  watching me. Soon it was breakfast time yummy cereal and lemon drink. While resting two hikers past me. see you up the trail they  shouted
Time to hike .I had spent most of the morning in the forest but as I dropped down their in front of me was another beautiful lake. As I needed water I detoured down a side trail to it.
Wow so beautiful I dropped my pack next minuted my clothes were in a pile and I was in the water.god it feet so good to be clean if only for a few minutes. I came ashore, then washed my clothes. As I sat drying in the sun crusher appeared. Whats it like ? he asked
Its perfect was my reply

Once my clothes we dry I headed back to the trail. The next section was through a big burn and OMG  it was hot,my watch read 95 and there was no shade. In the distance were the three sisters a large mountain range but I couldn’t really get a good photo. I was melting in the heat and  I had been in this burn for almost 3 hours so the next shade will be lunch.
While I rested in the shade crusher came past, he looked  exhausted too. ” bloody hot”  he said “I need water”. Several minutes later Timberline came through and said the exact same phrase
Soon it was time to hike but as I began to walk there was crash of thunder it rumbled .  I walked on  wondering if i was going to get wet?. It threatened all day  but at 5pm the sky went black this is it I thought but I marched on crash went the thunder I seemed to be walking into it but I kept going, as  I wanted the miles so pushed on hoping to get to 7pm or before the rain came . several spots of rain fell but nothing more  I then spied a few tents  by the lake that will do  I said.
One tent was Crushers and the other a section hikers  , I soon had my tent up  and  my  tea  on the  go before then it was zzzz

27 miles
Camp zzz