Daily Miles: 23
Total Miles: 2442
We had a nice night of sleep and woke up with dry sleeping quilts. Gazelle and MountainMan weren’t quite so lucky, waking up to tents covered in condensation. We think that we were tucked in the trees just enough to avoid any moisture getting on our stuff.
The morning started out with really nice light on the surrounding mountains as we made our way up through a valley. We have noticed that the fall colors are starting to creep into the landscape. Even though we are surrounded by evergreens, the bushes and ferns are changing colors to reds and oranges.
We climbed up and out of the valley and had a beautiful view of the other side once we crested the top of the gap. There was a lovely lake with water in a green/blue shade that was so clear and pristine that you could see to the bottom of the lake. We often mention that we would love to come back to this area for a shorter outing in the future, where we would hit all the beautiful lakes and just relax.
We had a big descent from the lake back to the PCT. We got back to the PCT at 10:00am, and decided that the alternate probably did save us a some time in the end. Regardless, it was a beautiful section, so we were glad that we took the alternate.
Once we were on the PCT again, we started a ten mile climb. It was mostly gradual and we took a lunch break midway, so it didn’t feel too bad. We are still passing by so many ripe blueberries and huckleberries so of course we had to stop here and there to eat handfuls of berries.
Late in the afternoon, we came to a river which was noted on the map as a possible dangerous river crossing. This river is more a problem early in the season. For us, the river crossing was no problem, but we could definitely see how it could be sketchy with the winter melt off.
We had to do 23 miles today in order to keep our miles for tomorrow more reasonable for getting into Stevens Pass. Beardoh went ahead after the river crossing in order to get to camp early to start our dinner. SweetPea made it to camp at 7:25, about 20 minutes after Beardoh. We got everything set up quickly, but it still turned into a late night since we got to camp late.
Tomorrow morning, we’re going to get up early and aim to be on the trail by 6:00. We are planning to do our 19 miles by 4:00, and there is a lot of climbing tomorrow. We really don’t like getting up so early since it is so dark, but hopefully this will be the last time we need to get up so early on this trail.