Day 118: Stevenson – mile 2192

Elevation gain: 4,482 ft

Elevation loss: 554 ft

Man, oh man…this little motel where we stayed in Stevenson last night was almost more disgusting than I could bear. This is only the 2nd time this whole trip where I would’ve been MUCH happier in our cozy tent than in this place. I easily could’ve passed on the running water, with the pinhole leak under the sink which sprayed my feet as I washed my hands. I also could’ve passed on the shower with the hair left in the tub and the stains on the wall. Not to mention the paint peeling off the walls, the holes in the curtains, and the lack of towels that they forgot to stock for us. The craziest thing, is that this was the “clean” room…the first room they had us go to still had all the dirty linens piled on top of the bed and all over the floor. This morning consisted of walking the rest of our “shin alternate” route. It was 15 miles of road walking, which was definitely rough, but at least it didn’t bother Link’s shin too much. The first 5 miles to the town of Carson, WA was probably the most sketchy because there was only a narrow shoulder for us to walk on. But we did get to walk along the Columbia River the whole time which was beautiful.

Once we got to Carson, we stopped into Crosscut Cafe for some breakfast sandwiches, burritos, and smoothies…they were tasty!

Cool mossy rooftop

While we were walking the final 10 miles on the road, Link stopped to re-tie his shoes. This is when a truck pulled over and asked him if he was hiking the PCT and if he would like a ride to the trailhead. As tempting as this was for us all, we needed to make sure we continued our continuous footpath toward Canada. So Link told him he really appreciated the offer, but needed to decline. This was already a hard decision for us to walk an alternate route from the PCT, so we definitely wouldn’t feel right getting a ride as well.

We all made it back to the PCT around 12:30 and filled up our water at Panther Creek. This is where Mantis & Pants decided they wanted to take another alternate route to see a cool waterfall, while Link & I would take the 9.5 mile climb up the PCT. So we will catch back up with them tomorrow or the next day. We needed to carry 6 liters of water between the 2 of us because our plan was to dry camp at the top of the climb. So our packs were heavy with water and food since we had just resupplied, and the climb was pretty steep. We knew the climbs would start getting steep again now that we are in WA, but at least the inclines don’t hurt Link. So even though it was hard, he didn’t have pain, plus we were treated to some beautiful views including Mt Hood again!

Red Clover
False Solomon’s Seal
Back to the “curly haired moss” called Dendroalsia moss
False Yellowhead

The trail does have quite a few actual PCT signs on posts or attached to trees, but most of the time we see these white diamond shaped blazes which mark the trail. They are usually blank so people have written stuff on many of them. Most of it is very encouraging or something to cheer you up as you walk…then we saw this one today:

This climb was long, steep, and appeared endless. But I love that someone crossed out “never” in order to try and still make it encouraging 🤣 The biggest bummer about today is that I lost my sunglasses! They were hanging on my chest strap and must’ve fallen off when I leaned over to pick up my poles. They have fallen off plenty of times in the past and I always notice when it happens. I have no idea how they were so stealth this time when they fell off. Hopefully Trout Lake on Thursday will have some cheapo ones to tide me over…almost 2,200 miles I had those sunglasses, darn it! We made it to the campsite about 5:15 which gave us plenty of time to set up, eat, download pix and call the kids! We are finally camped on a ridge again with a gorgeous backdrop of Mt Adams which is probably why we had service too…bonus! While we were setting up camp, there was a rustling sound behind us. We both turned around but didn’t see anything except a tall weed moving. As we continued to watch the weed, it descended into the dirt like magic! Obviously a little rodent was pulling it underground for him to eat or use in his house…so funny to see the weed just disappear before our very eyes!

Making dinner time lapse 😁

Thanks for following along as we hike through our LAST state!! DoubleDown