Daily miles – 24
Total miles – 1621
We got a ride out of Etna around 7pm last night. We were thankful for having arranged with Lion Heart, who was volunteering at the hostel, the ride earlier in the day as there were very few cars headed up in the evening from town.
Etna was quite pleasant to stay in. The town’s free camping at the city park was fairly conveniently located and itself was shady with picnic tables. We had a couple good meals at Bob’s Ranch House Diner and one meal at Dotties Burgers. The library was welcoming and had several computers to use. All in all, Etna was good.
Beardoh started to feel better on Wednesday. He was finally able to eat more substantial real food and feed his appetite from the previous days of liquid only and then banana, bread applesauce diet that the doctor in Shasta had recommended.
Sleep was good up at Etna Summit last night. We slept right off the PCT and next to the road. There was no traffic until 4am. Gazelle headed off ahead of us early this am in an effort to make up a day or two so that she could see a friend, but then catch us quickly as we pass by Ashland in roughly one week.
It was nice walking during the morning. Cool air, flat terrain, good views. We entered the Marble Wilderness early in the day and remained in it all day long. This area had a lot of blow downs and as most Wilderness areas do, a lot of trail work that is needed. The day never got too hot and we are told that temperatures will continue to cool over the next week.
Beardoh started with his Chaco saddles for the beginning of the day and walked for about 8 miles before switching back to normal shoes. He alternated back and forth to ease the transition to the new shoe style. Towards the end of the day he felt some pain in the bottoms of his feet and knee, so tomorrow will probably be even less time in the saddles.
We are camped near an old Ranger cabin. This is a place that Beardoh had stayed in 2012. It was memorable then as the deer were quite a nuisance at that time. They still are, maybe worse. There have been a few times on this hike where we could be persuaded to adopt a ‘stealth only’ style of campsite all the time, and tonight is another occasion. The deer are just too habituated to this area and have no fear of humans. They are extremely close to the hammocks and tents. This is probably a generation or two from the 2012 deer and they are more numerous around camp. Not good for them or us.