Today’s totals: mileage ~8 miles and 2,000 feet of elevation.

We had Upper Paradise Valley campground all to ourselves last night and that included no mosquitos.

Max and I were abruptly awoken at 5:30 as a huge sugar pinecone crashed down into camp!  This was followed by a second only moments later.  We found out later the first one careened off the side of the tent where Maddie was sleeping. Not being able to sleep anymore Max and I got up to check out the river situation. Amy and I had been concerned about the bridge being out and weren’t sure if we would be able to continue the trip if we couldn’t find a safe spot to cross. The river had gone down a little over night but still crossing at camp was definitely out since the river was raging.


I headed up river to see if I could scout out a possible solution to our predicament. As luck would have it we found one, after assessing about 2-3 options. We were able to find a large log jam that would allow us to cross without having to touch the river. Now the fun part of bush whacking back down river toward our camp. After hundreds of mouthfuls of spider webs, countless scrapes to our ankles and shins, and oh yeah numerous stream crossings we made it back to the river across from our camp. We had started this adventure at 8:30, and now it was 11:00. Wow 2 1/2 hours to basically go 50 feet.

Now it was time for breakfast to fuel up for the 6.5 mile hike to camp. While having breakfast Max decided do his best lumberjack impression by log rolling. Needless to say his skills won’t get him any trophies anytime soon. He launched himself at the log with a reckless abandon but the log was quicker as it rolled out from under him. This resulted in a small cut to his toe because oh yeah Max went for this attempt barefooted. We got to practice our first aid skills on Max who was put back together no problem.

Not much to say about the next 6.5 miles. Much of this section was HOT!!  We took some breaks and the kids used their iPods to avoid the boredom. We got to the suspension bridge crossing Woods Creek at 4:00. Fun bridge to cross unless you don’t like to stare through slates to the rushing river 30 feet below.  We have camp set up and looks like we will be sharing with a group of PCT hikers. Tomorrow starts the good stuff as we head up to Rae Lakes and the beauty it holds.

Max’s blog

Hey there. First things first I did not try to do a lumberjack impression, I was trying to get my water bottle and the log happened to be less stable than I first thought. Unfortunately I don’t have a lot to say this blog because Dad summed it up pretty well when he said it was boring and hot. When we crossed the river though, we saw a snake that went under a log to hide from us. Before we got to the actual trail though, we stepped on countless sticks that jumped up and attacked us XD. Was super glad to get into camp today and hopefully the next 5 days will be quicker than these last two.