Daily miles : 22
Total miles : 1479
Another warm day, today. The heat is draining on all of us and most hikers we see look as though the heat is taking their energy as well.
We didn’t have any major elevation gain or loss today, just rolling near the ridge line mostly. We caught several excellent views of Mt Shasta through the day when we peaked over the western edge of the ridge.
At the water spots and breaks we saw many hikers that we haven’t seen in a while, Rat, Ant, Click (it has been over 1000 miles), Saunter (it has been around 500 miles) and some other folks that were new to us. It is always fun seeing these folks, even if we haven’t hiked that much with them. Our experience is shared, even if not shared at the same time.
In the AM, we saw a hiker headed South. We had seen him and had dinner with him a couple weeks ago. He was having some medical issues and was headed home (walking back Southbound was the quicker way out of the woods). It was sad to see him need to head out. His malady did, however, remind us that we should stay very hydrated and not push ourselves too hard. It appears that kidney stress was his problem.
We saw three guys on mules today on the trail doing trail work. They were doing a run in to clear dead fallen trees on the trail. This was an interesting encounter today as in the AM we had walked over at several dead falls, some of which were probably well over 2 years old. Those aren’t too bad, but the overgrowth of the trail was pretty bad at the beginning of the day. Beardoh wacked his foot pretty hard on a stump left high on the trail in an area where the over growth was bad enough that one could not see their own feet. Then, as we walked the area where the guys had been with their mules, the trail was busted up and had frequent holes (deeper than 5 inches sometimes) as it could not sustain the weight of the mules.
The dual use of the PCT with hikers and horses/mules is interesting. Certainly, a lot of the trail work is done by folks using horses/mules, but also so much of the aggressive erosion and soil loosening, widening, (not too mention horse shit to avoid stepping in) is done by the animals. The dual use issue seems like a common one in western states, but a non existent issue in the east.