It has been a few weeks since my last post and in the mean time-- we've finished the California section of the trail and arrived in Oregon! It was a long, long, long hike through California. It is indeed a huge state. We made it through the beautiful and challenging high sierras. Then at Sonora Pass, just as we were really on a roll, we were stopped short by a fire close to the trail (known as the Washington fire). Our dear friends, John and Liz, drove out from the bay area two days early to rescue us. Skirting us down the mountains and treating us to wonderful town luxuries (i.e. beds, showers, and cooked food!). We waffled about whether or not to brave the fire conditions, the smoke inhalation, the unknown personal safety conditions, and ultimately decided to skip a couple of hiking days on the trail to get around the fire, resupply in South Lake Tahoe, and then get back on the trail. It was a hard decision. But Patrick and I both asked ourselves, in any other circumstance, would we consider hiking into the wilderness next to an uncontained forest fire? The answer was a unanimous no. Plus, John and Liz made it so easy for us to get up to South Lake Tahoe by driving us all the way there from Sonora Pass (thank you!!!!!). It was shortly after South Lake Tahoe that Patrick created a new hiking regimen or schedule for our trip that would help us finish the trail before he needs to be back in Vermont. The plan is simple: hike a minimum of 25 miles a day-- and maintain a 25 mile per day average even with town stops (subtracting a handful of "zero" days for visiting friends in Bend, Portland, and Washington). Every time we hike over 25 miles, we get "bonus" miles that we can "cash in" when we want to hang out in a town or when we don't make our 25 mile quota. So far it is a grand success. We've been about to keep up with our 25 mile per day average for over 500 miles! And we've hiked our biggest miles so far, hiking 31, 32, 33, and 34 mile days! Happily, we've met another young couple that hikes at a similar pace, Bushdog and Stomper, and they're up for our mileage plan-- so we're planning a joint attack on the Canadian border sometime in the first week of September, barring unforeseen conditions.
I unfortunately have no pictures to share this post because I forgot to bring the camera to the library. I know, I know, my blogging skills leave a bit to be desired. But next time, I promise, they'll be photos. For now, we're in Ashland, Oregon. Happy to finally be in the second state of this epic journey. And excited to spend tomorrow lounging around and doing as little walking as possible.
Recording moments from our journey on the Pacific Crest Trail. (All pre-2015 entries are Patrick's words on work and life at the homestead).