Total Miles: 2577.2
With only a short nearo planned out of town this afternoon, there was plenty of time to enjoy Stehekin and its beauty. Sitting by the water's edge and staring into the valley that leads back to the trail and the jagged peaks of the North Cascades, I thought back to the memory of my Dad and I in Glacier National Park almost 20 years ago, a place that bore a striking resemblance to the scene before me now. How much he would have loved this place.
It was also the ideal spot for reflection as the trail winds down to its final miles. Despite the weather challenges of the past few weeks, I thought of how lucky we'd each been all along the way, particularly not to be stymied by wildfire closing the trail, something that many thru-hikers both ahead of and behind us were not as fortunate with. I don't know why it's worked out so well, but I'm thankful that it has. Stehekin was the perfect place to look back and marvel at it all.
Only 80 miles from Canada, Stehekin marks the very last resupply stop of the trail. One more heavy load from here to the border. A huge thank you both to my dear wife Emily and to The Sainsburys, for sending me a treasure trove of some of my absolute favorite foods to carry with me on these final few days. It's way more food than any single person ought to eat in the course of 4 days, but I'm happy to accept the challenge!
At 2:00, we were back on the bus heading for the PCT and one last stop at the bakery along the way. An hour later, we were heading up the trail to squeeze in a few leisurely miles before calling it a day. Although the forecast is steadily improving, we weren't spared a few afternoon showers--our 12th day with rain in Washington. By the time we'd pitched our tents, however, it was clear skies all around and the sound of rushing water from the nearby creek setting the evening's soundtrack.