Daily Miles: 26
Total Miles: 1647
Luckily the deer didn’t prevent us from getting a good night of sleep. SweetPea didn’t take any chances and went to sleep with earplugs, but even Beardoh didn’t have trouble with the deer at night.
The morning started with a climb out of the valley we had slept in. It was the beginning of half a day with great views. We could see mountains and valleys for miles…some pretty cool rock formations as well. The trail seemed to be filled with a rainbow of wild flowers…just so idillic.
It seemed like we came upon an unusually large number of birds along the trail in the morning. Our footsteps sent about five grouse flying away…Beardoh even got so close to one, it seemed like he was about to step on it before it flew off. Then we saw a beautiful bird that was bright yellow with an orange head and black wings. We didn’t know what kind of bird it was, but we just watched it from the trail, appreciating its beauty. Later in the day, Beardoh had a hummingbird fly within inches of his face. Interesting day with the birds.
Starting around 11:00am, we started a long downhill that will last for over twenty miles. Even though downhill trail can be easier in terms of energy output, it can be harder on our bodies. Our legs and knees can start to ache after a long downhill. To try to combat the pain, we try to take rest breaks where we are able to stretch and just rest our legs for awhile.
There was a lot of poison oak along the trail this afternoon. There had obviously been a fire in this area and a lot of undergrowth had come back, including lots of poison oak. The trail followed the Grider River for many miles and we ended up crossing the river several times. There were supposed to be three bridges to help with the crossings, but only one is still standing…not sure what happened to the other two.
We ended the day at a USFS campground which is temporarily closed. There were quite a few PCT hikers at the campground and we set up camp in a real campsite. The mosquitos were terrible and we all wore our windpants despite how hot it was. Since mosquitos can’t bite through our windpants and shirts, we often put those on when it is buggy.
We’re looking forward to a shorter day tomorrow with some town food in Seiad Valley.