Total Miles: 1108.8
With Proton having left the house early this morning, Beardoh, Sweet Pea, Dreamcatcher and I enjoyed one final breakfast at the house before contacting a local trail angel named Sue for a ride back to the trail. Happening to be at the grocery store only a few minutes walk down the street, we met her in the parking lot where we were introduced to her 1-year-old dog named Lola before shoving off. Sue is just one of many trail angels in the area who are kind enough to list their phone numbers at the local outfitter, inviting hikers to contact them for anything they might need while in town. The kindness of strangers yet again, and on every occasion, it's been an opportunity to get to know some fascinating people and their stories, even if only for a few minutes as you ride in their car back to the trail. Sue was no exception.
The temperature had dipped down to a most comfortable 65 degrees, and combined with the scenery it made for one of the most pleasant days of hiking on the trail to date.
Entering the Desolation Wilderness, we were soon greeted with views of the stunning Lake Aloha which would have been right at home among photographs of the High Sierra from weeks ago.
As the evening began to draw near, Beardoh, Sweet Pea and I stopped to make camp while Dreamcatcher continued on, hoping to catch up with Proton before day's end. I couldn't help but feel that I may not see either of them for some time to come, but the trail is funny with how people go their separate ways only to be reunited again sometimes hundreds of miles away.
I'm snug in my tent, hiding from throngs of resurgent mosquitoes, lying on my brand new air mattress that the manufacturer was kind enough to swap out for my previous one that was working on its fourth leak--thank you Cascade Designs! The time off in town these past two days was wonderful, especially the time with Emily that was never a part of the plan before starting the trail, but it feels at home to be back on the trail, among the wilderness, continuing along the path that has led me this far.