PCT Day 47: In the bubble

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Ramona Falls (545.8) – Timberline Lodge (555.7): 9.9 miles / 469.7 total miles walked

I woke up a few times, and pretty much just dozed from the moment Odie started stirring at 4 am. I tried bandaging my chafe with gorilla tape…..which honestly, did nothing. It was more uncomfortable trying to walk with that than it was just toughing it out and hoping for the best. When my alarm went off at 5 am I packed up and when I went to get water, who shows up but Odie?

Apparently he had gotten about a mile in wheb he realized that he had forgotten his water filter, which was tucked behind a tree. 😂

So Sink and I packed up, Odie got his filter and the three of us headed onward toward the climb up to Mt. Hood.

A short distance from Ramona Falls the trail hits the Sandy River, which in 2014 I crossed twice in one day, once on the way up and again on the retreat back down because of the snow.

It’s a raging river and because of the silliness of the water you can’t really judge the depth. That makes an actual ford difficult and dangerous. Thankfully, some people had constructed a makeshift log bridge which was pretty easy to cross. This we avoided wet feet/ shoes and didn’t waste too much time.

From the Sandy river, the trail climbs over 5000 ft in 9 miles, with a descent in the middle. It’s a beast. Relentless, mostly steep uphill, with some fun stuff thrown in like ankle deep sand, gravel and another river crossing.

I remembered the climb well, even recognized the very spot Jordan, Sarah and I had taken a picture together.

Some parts of the trail were new to me, because in 2014 they were completely covered by several feet of snow.

I managed to catch up with Sink just at the precise spot where in 2014 we had made the decision to turn around. I took a moment to say goodbye to Sarah, and then moved on along, onwards to new trail.

The first real view of Mt. Good was spectacular and the trail wasn’t climbing as steeply anymore, the higher up I moved. The views were all amazing.

And SO MANY NOBOs. We are officially crossing paths with the NOBO bubble, and there’s so many of them. Most just nod, or say hey, some actually stop to chat. And they’re all so crazy fast. 😯

My goal for the day was to make it by 12:30 after a 6 am start. I got to the Lodge at 11:40. 😁

Sink and I walked inside, where Mark immediately came to get us. We had met Mark last at Cascade Locks for some beers on Saturday. He injured his knee and had been staying at the Lodge since yesterday. He was incredibly kind to let us crash in his room.

The first priority, of course, was food. I changed into my sleep shirt, because it was less stinky than my hiking shirt, and then we went to attack the lunch buffet.

The selection was pretty nice, although there were less warm dishes than I expected. But there were different cheeses and delicious bread, so that made me really happy.

After stuffing my face with as much deliciousness as I could handle, Mark went to run some errands and Sink and I showered and washed our clothes. Feeling almost human again we went across the parking lot to the Wy’East store to pick up the resupply packages.

I finally had some delicious German candy in mine. I had honestly begun to wonder where I had packed all that stuff.

In the afternoon we played around with a replica of the axe used in ‘The Shining’ and then met up with Mark and some other hikers at the Ramshead bar. Capt’n and his wife had some very interesting stories to tell and were so incredibly kind, they insisted we stay for dinner. I had a pretty good lamb stew, with more of that tasty bread.

After a really fun evening I collapsed on the top bunk in Mark’s room, Sink chose to sleep on the floor. Tomorrow we move on, back down the mountain.

Keeping you posted…

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