It was a beautiful morning to wake up at Jefferson Park. A bit on the cool side and Mt Jefferson was wearing a morning cloud hat – a cap cloud!
The Sun rose over the East side of the lake illuminating the mountain in an early morning glow. As the Sun began to shine on me, I noticed a growing buzzing behind me. I looked down at the ground and saw that there was a small hole with yellow jackets coming out to greet the morning rays.
I do believe I packed up more quickly than any other camp spot I’ve been in. Though I’m not allergic to yellow jackets, I have no interest in hanging around the entry to their hive as they are coming out for the day. I am definitely going to go back to Jefferson Park for more exploration.
My feet were not happy going into my boots. They were swollen still and my right pinky toe was already pressing up against the side of my boot. I’m hoping that today has a lot of UP and not very much DOWN as the down part is where my feet jam into the front of my boot.
I am heading to Olallie Lake Resort today to pick up my Cache drop that a friend of mine delivered for me. It should not be too long of a trek to get there, and depending on the resort, I may stay the night.
As I got onto the PCT, I noticed the track marks of the Brothers. My first inclination was hoping that they at least stopped to camp in Jefferson Park and that they did not just hurry on through it to put in miles. There are some spots worth stopping for. I actually caught up with them after climbing up to the first ridge line and they said they had camped just south of the Park the night before. They were also headed to Olallie to stop at the little store and have lunch. I’d see them there.
Down I went out of Jefferson Park over some glacial snow and into the woods. It was a meandering kind of day and the Sun was going in and out of the clouds. It was also a beautiful part of the wild. I stopped for a snack of dried mango and granola a few miles before Olallie on the other side of Olallie lake. No sooner did I have two pieces of mango, did the asshole birds show up! So I didn’t stay long, but put my pack back on and headed down hill. The brothers caught up to me and skirted past while I was busy taking pictures. The misty weather made all of the colors jump out. It was impossible not to snap shots!
The weather had shifted and the misty clouds had rolled in filling empty spaces with a foggy depth. It was a welcome change to the mostly consistent blue and sunny skies that I had been experiencing for the past two weeks. TWO WEEKS. Wow, it doesn’t seem like it could be that long already, yet it’s amazing how far I’ve trekked in such a short period of time.
I got to Olallie Lake Resort around 1:30 and the cute little store they had with a bunch of hiker treats was being run by a new owner, Diane. She was sweet as pie. She informed me that my friends were up in the kitchen making their lunch out of the rain which had just started. So I did some shopping in the store (snickers bars, potato chips, cookies, fruit leather and any other fattening items I could find). I still can’t believe how much weight I’ve lost.
My Cache box was up in the kitchen and it was a pleasure to unpack. I totally spoil myself. I packed myself $50.00, some ramen (which I would be eating that evening in the cold, wet day), a happy cookie, another pop-tart, another dark chocolate cheesecake package and a bunch more goodies besides food. I had also packed enough food for about a week and I still had some left over. So, I sorted through all of my items and packed what I would need for the next four days plus one extra (just in case), and told the boys they could take whatever they wanted from the remainder. They grabbed themselves a couple of goodies and I put the rest in the PCT Hiker box hoping that someone coming through could use it.
To say those chips tasted good would be a complete lie. They tasted AWESOME. As did the double chocolate chip cookie.
My pack felt light, even after the cache pickup, so I was quite pleased. It was still quite early in the day, and the resort did not have PCT Camping spots, so off I went. There was one spot just North of the resort overlooking a lake, but after contemplating camping there for about 10 minutes, I decided to put in a few more miles.
The next section of the trail was densely wooded and very quiet. I didn’t see anyone, or hear much of anything except the occasional scurrying of an animal. After a few miles I took out my maps and saw that there was a trail to a lake a couple of miles up on the PCT. There are usually camping spots around lakes even if they aren’t marked on the map, so when I got to the junction for Russ Lake, I took it. It was 1/4 mile to the lake. My feet were already cranky, but the side trail was easy to go along. When I got to the lake, I noticed a small trail off to the right, and my intuitive nudge pulled me along that trail, up a small hill and put me on a ridge line between TWO lakes. Just a few short strides along the ridge line and there were two great camping spots waiting for me. I took the smaller one that was nestled in the trees between the two.
I heard a lot of animal noises that evening, which didn’t surprise me as there was an abundance of unmanned wooded area all around. The ramen I packed was absolutely delicious, and such a complete change from all of the heavier dense meals I had been eating. The broth was warming and quite tasty.
I decided that it was time to dismantle my toenails. They were already cut down short, but I took out my fingernail file and filed them down to nubs. I have no idea it this will work, but I really need to relieve the pressure of the boot hitting the toenail. First Aid for the evening – CHECK!
Today I thought a lot about things to do when I get back home. I will rearrange my room (which I typically do in the Spring and Autumn. I am compiling a winter movie watch list. The cooking/baking list keeps getting bigger. Work on my 2nd book (first book by the way was Mirror/Mirror – A Holistic Approach to Living Well). The 2nd book is an 8 week life change course book based on a program I created in my business Peaceful Roots and have been teaching since 2007 called Fit Club. My journal is filling up with a lot To DO list and I’m very excited to get at it!
As it goes on trail, early to bed, early to rise!
mm 2042-2057, 15 mile day