A Day of Pushing It
Beginning Elevation = 5,500
Ending Elevation = 6,000
Elevation Range = 2,960 – 6,000
Weather: Cloudy, turned to a mix of sun/clouds, high 65°F
Well, I survived the night. In fact, I got some pretty good rest, which was very much needed after the late day hike and night hike rain/hail frustrations of yesterday. That was one of my most rough times on trail yesterday evening. When I woke around 6:10am-ish, it seemed to be still dark out, which didn’t seem right. Turns out, it was still pretty overcast, and I had a pretty dense tree canopy above, the combined effect of which was to make it seem that the sun was refusing to rise this morning.
I started my hike at 6:53am. It was a pain packing up all the wet stuff, but I’ve gotten familiar with the task by this time unfortunately. It was a bit chilly I thought and not having my waterproof gloves anymore was a definite inconvenience. They’d gotten soaked through the inside last night. My dry sun gloves actually seemed to help some though! The trail was a bit crispy…
The sun was trying its best to burn away the cloudy fog, but it didn’t seem to succeed until I reached Lookout Rock, where I thought was a perfect spot to have breakfast…
I didn’t do the full layout of stuff, but it helped some. I managed to switch out of my dry fleece into my damp blue shirt. It was quite miserable at first, but my inkling was right when later on it dried and I wasn’t overheating like I would have otherwise. And, when I packed up again I strapped lots of things to the outside of my pack. It was like a mobile clothes line. Only problem was that the sun seemed to hide again and I was in thick trees for most of the day. Really my breakfast spot and my lunch spot were the two main exceptions…the rest of the day fit the “big green tunnel” idea.
Of course, I did manage to find some interesting things within the large tunnel de Verde, such as this little fella!
I promise it’s a real live animal not some rubber or plastic one somebody put on the trail. That’s what it looked like to me at first. Not sure why he was chilling out there all still-like, but it allowed me to get on the ground and take this close up…
Pretty neat right? And, I found some more pine cones belonging to the giants…
How many of you followed my ear buds cord down and saw it was disconnected? When you do an impromptu timed Heisman photo with a pine cone there’s no time to pack away the headphones people, come on.
I also made the astute observation that this area does indeed seem to be showing signs that I’m entering into the fall season (if the hail/thunderstorms last night didn’t give it away)…
Some trees were still quite lush and green looking still, but when I investigated further, it appeared the greenness was actually a sort of moss/lichen rather than growth from the tree itself. That’s my interpretation anyway and you all aren’t here to question it, so boom, truth I guess.
I took a break to have lunch and lay out most of my pack to dry at a super duper spot. This is the Middle Fork of the Feather River. I was so thankful the sun popped out again! My tent had been soaked and it dried in minutes!
About a mile prior to reaching the bridge/lunch spot, I’d come across a hiker coming north. We chatted for a bit. His name was Larry. Larry told me he saw a rattlesnake just south of the bridge. Sure enough, I saw the evil creature. This one was black I think and was sunning itself in the trail when I came along. Luckily, it quickly snuck into some boulders and I climbed up the other bank to get by the area. A narrow escape.
I had a climb up from the river, which was my lowest elevation point for the day. The rest of the day the general trend was up. I recruited the help of O.A.R. and Mat Kearney to pump me up with some tunes. It’s pretty crazy how much that helps actually.
Here’s some views from after my 1:45pm departure from the bridge.
I had hoped to get 30 miles in today, but it wasn’t in the cards for me. I did get close though and think I can still make my goal of reaching the Sierra City post office by 12:30pm on Saturday. I’ll have to pull a big day tomorrow again. It was very very nice to not set up in the dark though and have a little time at camp where it’s still light out.
I camped near Alder Spring…
And had a nice flat spot…
Jeff Manion – Strength For The Journey (The Journey Begins)
O.A.R – Live on Red Rocks
Mat Kearney – CRAZYTALK
The Goo Goo Dolls – Dizzy up the Girl