Total Miles: 1474.9
When the lack of phenomenally exciting terrain and pure logistics inevitably collide from time to time, certain trail days become more about doing the miles than anything else. Today was Exhibit A of this collision. But before the clock became our master for the day, we were treated to some beautiful scenery just after sunrise as the shroud of night began to lift from the landscape to our west.
The waves of low mountains stretching into the distance and appearing in various shades of bluish gray vividly reminded me of the Great Smoky Mountains.
And moments later around the bend, the morning alpenglow illuminated the slopes of Mt. Shasta that only days earlier had seemed so distant.
Like all the Cascade volcanoes, its impressiveness is best understood by how high it looms over the surrounding landscape.
Following these awe-inspiring post-sunrise vistas, it was down into the trees for the remainder of the day where we all too gladly traded stunning scenery for the cooler shade of the forest on yet another very hot and humid day. Periodically tuning in to an audiobook, a podcast, or some music throughout the day really helps to break up the occasional monotony that can creep in when the scenery is the same mile after mile and the goal of the day is to do as many miles as possible. The final challenge of the day was not only continuing to put one aching foot in front of the other but to do so in what had quickly become a veritable tunnel of poison oak. Thick as it was and often overhanging the trail, it’ll be a miracle if I don’t break out in a rash at some point if this keeps up.