Distance hiked today: 19.7 miles / 31.7 km.
2000 miles done! 💥
Unfortunately there's a relatively short portion of trail that's been closed for a few years due to a previous fire. There's no feasible way or alternate to hike around it, so we had to get a ride from Santiam Pass to Olallie Lake and miss 48.8 miles of trail. It's a bummer to break the continuous footpath I'm aiming for, but I'm just grateful it's probably the only closure I'll have this year and it's not very long. In comparison, the 2021 fires in California were so bad that all the trails in the entire state were closed, and many peoples' thru-hikes were ended because of it. I'll count all the off-trail miles and the nearly 800 I did in 2019 as making up for it 😆.
We hiked to the road where we'd arranged a ride with DevilFish (pictured), a trail angel that maintains the big water caches in Oregon and in the desert. He's one of the few people that will drive the dirt roads to get us as close as possible to the closure end, otherwise hikers will need to hitchike from main roads which misses more trail.
8 hikers squished into the cab & canopy of his truck. It was a great day, because I basically just sat and ate food. I went into a grocery store for breakfast, and the deli had scrambled eggs sold by weight, sausage, and bacon. The lady started scooping a normal portion of eggs into a container, and I just kept telling her to keep on scooping… this hiker can eat a lot.
It was a 6 hour trip, and DevilFish wouldn't accept donations - the kindness of strangers and trail angels along the PCT never ceases to amaze me. A thru-hike isn't just about the trail or the hiking, it's as much about the people you meet along the way and the community that surrounds it.
Olallie Lake was beautiful. The afternoon was hot and I felt like a zombie, almost falling asleep while walking. The night was hot too. I lay in my tent as it got dark, still having things to do but too tired and hot to move.
These 49 miles we missed would have taken us about a day and a half to hike, so don't worry, we've reduced the Oregon Challenge proportionally from 14 days to 12.5 days.
Total trail mileage: 2065.6 miles / 3323.6 km