Day 104: mile 1872.1 – mile 1897.8

Elevation gain: 3,937 ft

Elevation loss: 3,350 ft

It definitely wasn’t as cold this morning so our fingers were able to work properly and we started walking by 7am. The water sources today looked dismal! It was mostly stagnant ponds which didn’t get rave reviews…” There are only 2 things in life I regret. One is pooping in the pool in 6th grade, and the other is drinking this pond water”, one hiker wrote 🤣 For another pond someone wrote, “I’d rather die than try to filter this water. I dare you to drink out of these ponds”.

Needless to say, we were extremely excited to see the most amazing cache left by a trail angel after only 6 miles of hiking this morning. Not just tons of water that didn’t need to be filtered, but batteries to charge our phones, mosquito repellant, Advil, wipes, tampons, books to read…basically every possible thing for a hiker in need. Outstanding!

Right after the cache, we had a 6 mile climb to the top of Cowhorn Mountain where we were greeted with some spectacular views! Beautiful lakes and mountains on both sides of the ridges…we could even see The Three Sisters Mountains way off in the distance at times (Faith, Hope and Charity).

Great breakfast spot!

We really wanted to make it to Summit Lake for lunch even though it would mean eating a little later since it was another 12 miles. But, as we’ve said before, the PCT doesn’t take us by many lakes at all, so we really wanted to enjoy this one. I’m extremely glad we walked until 2:30 in order to make it happen! We sat out on this peninsula that juts out into the lake a bit and had the place to ourselves. With the lovely breeze, it kept the mosquitoes away as well. We’ve pretty much had mosquitoes here and there all along, but they’ve really started to pick up again lately which does not thrill me 🤨

The lake had super warm water which made us really want to jump in for a swim, but the strong breeze would’ve made getting out WAY too chilly! Plus we still had 7 miles to the next water source and possible campsite. So after an hour-ish of enjoying the lake, we hit the trail again. It was another 6 mile climb where we saw a TON of day hikers and weekend backpackers who had all just been to the top of Diamond Peak…a very popular destination I guess!

This fungi was as big as my open hand!

We had heard that our next water, Mountain Creek, had tent sites but also had a ton of mosquitoes so we said we would assess the situation when we got there. Well, the intel was very correct…those buggers were voracious and huge so we decided to collect water and dry camp just 1.5 miles further.

While we were at the creek, I realized I hadn’t washed out my pee cloth at Summit Lake. So I did that quickly and then set it down on a rock in order to take this picture:

Then I was rushing to slap the bugs, help Link, slap the bugs off of him, put the water in my pack, throw on my pack, and start walking again before all the blood was drained from my body…and left the pee cloth on the rock. 😩😩 Gosh darn it!! I didn’t even realize it until we were at our campsite 1.5 miles away. No going back this time…and I loved that thing! So when we have cell service tomorrow, I will order a new one and text Mantis to see if she can pick it up for me. I definitely don’t want to leave trash in the wilderness!

I guess sometimes we need two

When we walked up to the campsite, we saw that there were already 2 tents there. We were greeted by two of the cutest and sweetest dogs named Juniper and Bentley…oh, and their owners too! We asked if they would mind if we joined them and their answer was, “no problem!”. I’m glad the site was really big so that we weren’t intruding on their space too much. We really enjoyed chatting with all 3 of them, and I especially loved getting my dog fix (I miss our dog, Mikey, so much!).

This is Bentley…those eyes!
Juniper is just a puppy

The campsite’s view is spectacular, and the sunset was stunning! But there definitely wasn’t as much breeze as we were hoping to have, so the darn mosquitoes are crazy! One just got me right by my eye, that little @*#€¥! 😡

I would love to think that the mosquitoes will get better as we go north, but in reality, I know that’s a pipe dream. Maybe if we all do an anti-mosquito dance…? 😉 We ARE, however, excited for a couple town meals tomorrow and maybe even a shower and laundry! Thanks for joining us on this adventure…Double Down