Slept long and well at the Shelter Cove campground, the night was comfortably cool. But I realized that my sleeping pad is loosing air… again. I had it replaced just before the Sierra and now it was loosing air again. Probably not a puncture but maybe a failure of the valve – just in the early morning I hit the floor. Will try to get it replaced again – hope Thermarest / Cascade Designs is again customer friendly.
Went for breakfast around 8.30am. We were hanging out a bit longer, using internet, having snacks and another shower. Chatted with Medicine Man, Sharpshooter and Pinecone – they have also been hiking as a group for long time and we ran into them again and again. Left Shelter Cove finally around 1.30pm.
A 1000 feet climb was waiting, but with the short hiking day yesterday and today’s late start, the hiking went well. We had missed the 1900 miles marker, so we created our own.
Made use of a water cache at mile 1913.
Pitched the tents at Bobby Lake at mile 1915 around 7pm.
With just 6 miles left and leaving at 6am, made it to the highway before 8am. Crumbs and I were walking together to the the highway and met another hiker from Switzerland who had already called a trail angel for a ride. We were lucky – with basically no waiting time, we got into Ashland!
I went to the motel where Cactass and Tinkle were sharing a room with three other hikers. My early arrival was a surprise and being reunited was really nice! But it also meant good bye again soon after! Cactass is attending some weddings in September and for that, she decided to skip forward a couple of days to Crater lake.
With Cactass gone, we spent the rest of town time shopping for food, eating and resting. I used the life long Darn Tough socks warranty the first time and exchanged a pair with holes with a new one in the Mountain Provisions shop in Ashland.
It was also time for my forth pair of shoes:
First was Salomon X Ultra Mid, 0-700 miles
Second Lowa Camino Leather for the Sierras, 700-1100 miles
Third Salomon X Ultra 1100-1700
Fourth Salomon X Ultra 1700-?
The smoke situation from the forest fires is quite bad, especially around Ashland.
You see many people with filter masks on their faces on the streets – we will check out a local hardware store before hitting the trail later.
Besides the usual town activities (Lots of shopping for food, eating, relaxing), I did another shakedown! We need to increase the miles, and less gear will help… I also changed a lot of my gear.
On its way to Steven: Lowa leather boots, gloves, flint striker, platypus bottle, belt, long johns, Chromecast, solar charger, journal, pen, PCT sticker and pin. Some of items I will need again when getting into the cooler North/Washington.
Into trash: two pairs of socks, short running pants without pockets, Icebreaker top with too many holes.
New: Salomon trail runners X Ultra, TNF shorts with pockets, Arc’teryx hoodie as new base layer. One new pair Darn Tough socks.
The shakedown will reduce my pack weight probably around half a kilo. Changing from boots to trail runners is another big step for me…
Short break for an energy bar in a meadow full of flowers around 10.30am.
Lunch break at 12pm with Tinkle but without Cactass – she wants to push further. Wolf Creek at mile 1039.
Plan is to camp at mile 1049 Small Sherrold Lake – that would make it a 21 miles day – the first 20+ since entering the Sierra about a month ago. But I start feeling the pressure… Nearly three months on trail, but the midpoint still is 200+ miles out. Still believing in the Oregon wonder… 😉 After the midpoint at 1325 miles, many hikers increased their mileage significantly due to the flat land in Northern California and Oregon…
Caught up with Cactass. We heard about trail magic at Ebbots pass. Made it there around 5.30pm. And what a trail magic! Despite of July 4th, a nice couple offered hot dogs, sodas, beer, fruit, snacks…. Best trail magic I had on trail!
They also had some magic like energy bars, gear, even new socks sponsored by SNAC – thanks for the merino socks!
Had two beers there and another one to go.. our planned camp site was just another half mile out.
A nice evening with bellies full of magic, beers and sparklers for July 4th!
June 4. Slept pretty well. It had cooled down during the night, that helped with the sleep.
Started walking at 6am… Motivated to make it to Kennedy Meadows by 10am and with that in time for breakfast. The trail followed a river… The sweet sound of running water accompanied us on the last steps towards Kennedy Meadows. With that also the anticipation of having creeks, rivers and lakes around you for the next section, the High Sierra.
Being able to wash yourself every day… Do some laundry, wash the dishes… 😁
After the 700 miles marker, it was just a couple of miles to Kennedy Meadows and the General Store there.
Will be camping here at the Kennedy Meadows General Store for a night or two.
Time to prepare the gear for the Sierra, fill the bear canister… And give my feet some rest.