Day 109 mile 1989 – 2001

Elevation: ascent 1,014 ft, descent 1,475 ft

We were both up well before the alarm this morning (5:00) so we decided to just get up and get an early start. Last night’s winds died down a little bit, but it was cold this morning. Doesn’t happen often but we both were starting with down jackets on. We were leaving camp around 6:15 along with Smackdown, although he was headed south into the lava fields. I gotta say both of us were happy we didn’t have that again today.

We had 12 miles to go before we reached Santiam Pass and our meeting spot to be whisked away to Bend. Most of the morning was spent walking through large burn sections. We passed by Big Lake Youth Camp, which we originally planned to stopped at, but they are closed due to the pandemic. We passed by Big Lake but since we weren’t stopping we avoided the side trip, especially since we didn’t need water. We saw one more small pond, however, with the colder temps today we didn’t need any water to get us the last 3 miles. Along the way we ran into a ton of Huckleberry bushes and decided we would take the time to pick a bag for Maddie, since she was flying up to see us.

Huckleberry Bushes

Right before getting to Santiam Pass we reached the 2,000 mile mark on the trail. Holy Cow!! I can’t believe we have walked that far and are now only left with 653 miles to go.

We got to the Pacific Crest Trail Trailhead at Santiam Pass at 10:45 which was our designated meeting spot for our ride. Not more than 5 minutes after reaching the parking lot, Jim and Becky showed up. Not only did they offer to give us a ride to Bend they showed up with cold drinks. They also had our resupply box which they had generously held for us. Truly an amazing couple! Jim and Becky gave us a ton of information on the Bend area and dropped us off at the local airport since we were renting a car to have for the next few days.

Our Trail Angels Becky and Jim

After saying goodbye to Jim and Becky we got our car and headed for Bend, but we needed to stop for food first. On our way to the airport we saw a DQ and immediately both Double Down and I were craving a Blizzard. So our first stop was to go by DQ. This was followed by a stop to McDonald’s. Yes, we went there on purpose, mainly for the fries which Double Down was craving.

The fries are SOOOO GOOD!!!

Now it was off to the hotel to check in and get cleaned up. We are staying by the Old Mill District near downtown and it is fabulous! We are right by the Deschutes River and so many restaurants and shops. After checking in and cleaning up we headed across the river for some Italian food. Again having someone prepare and clean up our meals is so nice. Then it was time to head back to the airport as Maddie is flying up to spend the weekend with us. This is such a special treat but would have been better if Max could have made it as well.

Seeing Maddie was great and will be fun to explore Bend with her. I can’t believe after this double zero we will only have about 5 weeks left of this journey!! Thanks again for being so supportive during our adventure and following along. Link