PCT: 2401.9 – 2420.8
Total Miles: 693.7
Elevation gain: 5966
I left my hotel room at 7 am and was on the trail by 7:20 am. As usual, it was a steep climb out of town. It seems all town stops are at low elevation so that after you pick up your resupply and fill up the water bottles, you’re at your heaviest weight and then have a steep climb from the start. The first days are gruling but it gets better and better with each day. Your pack feels great when heading into the next town with very little food remaining.
Washington is very hilly and the climbs are steeper than in Oregon. I’m glad I chose to start my hike in Oregon as it allowed me to get conditioned and ready for Washington. I would like to say that Washington will get me prepared for the Sierras, but I believe Washington is harder with steeper climbs than the Sierras. Maybe I should have done the Sierras after Oregon, but it would be too much flip flopping around. Also, the Sierras may be tough due to the high elevation while climbing. Each day’s elevation gain may be less than in Washington, when when climbing in the Sierras, you are at a much higher elevation to start and the air is thin.
This section was the second most beautiful of the hike so far. Incredible views that rivaled Goat Rocks. Many, many waterfalls and steep cliff edges. I wish the photos could capture the view properly. The weather was cold, but I didn’t mind as it kept me cool while grinding my way up the endless slopes.
The trails are filled with volcanic rock making it very difficult to traverse, especially on the descents. It seems the higher the elevation, the steeper and rockier the trail. My feet were doing better today, but the rocks still hurt and slowed me down considerably. I found a single campsite at about 19 miles and decided to take it. It was located next to a huge waterfall that was quite loud. I felt lucky that I got a private site so I can get up early and not bother anyone. I’ll make up some miles tomorrow.
This is part of the waterfall next to my campsite.
At the bottom of every descent, were one or two lakes.
These views lower my blood pressure…
“The rockiest road always leads to the highest plateau…”
I like Washington. It’s hard but very beautiful…
Bill (Blackhawk Down)