|The PCT as it cuts across very fragile terrain on the rim of Crater Lake..|
Just can't get enough of that lake!
Looking back at Mt. Thielsen
From my journal (July 18, Day-84)..."This was one of those mornings I'd rather stayed in my bag since it was overcast and misty, but like a good hiker I went through my routines and hit the trail before Eric. It was nice to be walking back up on the ridge again eventhough views were mostly obscured by thick tree growth, but there were moments where the tall pointed Mt. Thielsen could be seen. I then had to water up at Thielsen Creek since the next sure water was over 16 miles up trail, but it didn't take much for a cool, overcast day like this. It was also nice to pass by a few lingering patches of snow which I hadn't seen since central California. This was also in the area of the highest point on the PCT in the Oregon/Washington section.
For lunch I found a nice ledge overlook about 50 feet off trail where I could see the rolling green mountains and lakes for many miles. For the most part the trail traversed a cool, lush forest with very appealing forested and flat mountaintop saddles between the ridge running... a place so very soothing to my inner soul. At times along the ridges I'd find myself stretching my eyes for a sense of the surrounding landscape through the thick tree growth. Later in the day I stop for a coffee break then later lose the trail. Just as I refind my way Eric shows up and we take the low lake alternate route since it passes conveniently by Shady Cove Resort where my next food drop is at. We hike until dark and find campsite beside a small calm lake. "
|This is the approximate place that marks the highest point on the PCT in Oregon and Washington at 7,550 feet above sea level.||.|
|This is my beloved MSR Titan Kettle atop the Esbit tablet burner that I made..|
Eric eating a hearty breakfast in bed at one of our campsites in the Oregon lake country.
From my journal (July 19, Day-85)..."Woke up this morning more ready to go than ever with a fabulous sunrise across the lake. I was up and moving with a vengance ready to get back on the trail and to Shady Cove for my food drop and possibly a shower. Eric was also getting up, but I pulled out ahead of him. This area of the trail is refferred to as the Oregon desert, being down in the low lake country with a very sandy trail. I lost the trail once coming out on the pavement, but soon found my way back via a spur horse trail. I follow Trapper Creek down to the resort and have an almond fudge mocha on the porch then begin packing my gear. One fellow brings out a fish scale and my pack weighs in at 30 pounds which included five days food... Whew! Finally I'm crossing highway 58 at Willliamette Pass and stop at the first Rosary Lake to cook a meal, then hike on until I drop all at dark to camp at some unknown spot. "
I sent one of my food drops ahead to Shelter Cove Resort whose sign was as gorgeous as the resort itself.
|I had to deal with the mosquittos a bit more in the Oregon lake country, but it was a beautiful sight when I was on the ridge looking down at it all.||.|
|I was in for a great surprise early one morning when I ran into Carol Wellman "Brawany" and David Mauldin "Rainmaker". I hadn't seen Carol since the Kick off at Lake Morena back in April where she hiked the desert section, then jumped up the trail to hike with David on to Canada. It was a too brief encounter but still a sweet reunion that lifted all our spirits as we shared our various trail stories. David and Carol have also put together a good set of PCT town reviews on their website at Trailquest which proved to be a very valuable resource for my trip..|
From my journal (July 20, Day-86)..."It was a nice starry night to be sleeping under the sky although it was misty and cold at wake-up. Fortunate for me it didn't rain today but it was cool and overcast again making it a great hiking day. Not too far down trail I run into Brawny (Carol Wellman) and Rainmaker (David Mauldin). It was great to finally meet Rainmaker, as I'd already spent a very fun Kick-Off at Lake Morena back in April with Brawny. All day I hike past so many small lakes and also must deal with some mosquittos along the way, but finally make it to a high spot not far from Sister's Wilderness Area. "
The Three Sister's Wilderness was the first obstacle that slowed us down in Oregon.