Day 119 mile 2192 – 2215.5

Elevation: ascent 3,345 ft, descent 3,037 ft

Last night the wind picked up and was blowing right through our tent. It definitely made for a chilly night but we stayed quite warm in our quilt. We had to don our down jackets and beanies as we got ready for the day. The sunrise was once again spectacular!

We were heading up the trail at 6:50. The one thing I am noticing is that the forests we are seeing in Washington are much more lush with plants fighting for every inch of ground and sunlight they can grab. One of the other nice aspects of the trail being by so much more vegetation is that we aren’t encountering as much dust. This makes it so much more comfortable for the person behind the lead hiker. It’s also very nice to take off my shoes at the end of the day and not have my feet caked in dirt.

Being in the deep forest today also brought about a huge explosion of fungi. Double Down was in heaven being able to check out each new fungi we would come across. There were even signs stating you need to have a permit if you plan to harvest mushrooms. Not something we had planned on that’s for sure. The fungi today range from as small as my fingernail to as large as a volleyball.

Shellfish-scented Russula
Brown Birch-Bolete
Brown Funnel Polypore
Fishy Milkcap
Common Earthball
Two-colored Bolete
Coral Fungi

We mainly stayed in the forest today but would occasionally pop out for views or to cross small meadows. Funny that many of the “lakes” that we saw today, I would consider large ponds. Guess I still don’t know how they classify them.

Sheep’s Lake

Passing by Sheep Lake today we hit mile 2,200!! We have been very surprised not to see any mosquitoes by the lakes so far. Around 10:00 we caught up with Mantis and Pants who camped a few miles ahead of us yesterday, after taking a second alternate trail to see Panther Falls. As the morning progressed we got to see different views of Mt Adams, and even had a peekaboo view of Mt St Helens.

Mt Adams
Mt Adams

There were quite a few backpackers out today and many of them were around Blue Lake where we had decided to stop for lunch. It was a great spot to eat and I was tempted to go for a swim, if it wouldn’t have been for the cold wind blowing across the lake.

Blue Lake for lunch

After lunch the four of us continued north. Since we are dry camping again we stopped by Deer Lake to filter water for tonight. We then considered taking the Sawtooth trail which parallels the PCT, as it’s supposed to have great views, but none of us felt like we had the energy to add in an extra climb for the day.

Filtering water
Deer Lake

Right before we reached our campsite at about 6:00, we came across a trail register. It’s always fun to see who is ahead of us. Once we reached camp, Mantis pulled out some trail magic for me from her bag. They had found a beer at their campsite last night and she carried it for me all day today. HOW SPECIAL!! We all had dehydrated beans to cook for dinner and enjoyed eating while having fun conversations. Mantis and Pants then grabbed their things and headed up the trail another 3 miles. We are all going into Trout Lake tomorrow and they wanted to get a few more miles in, which will allow them to sleep in a little.

Trail Register
Dru Bru Pacific Crest Ale, TASTY!!
Bean Party Dinner

Another fun day on the trail and we all can’t believe that we are now only down to 437.6 miles to go!! Oh, just an update on me. With the treatment I am doing each morning and evening along with the use of compression socks, my shin seems to be healing up and isn’t giving me issues throughout the day. Thanks for all of your support! Link