Shakedown Hike Day 2

I woke up at 6:30 a.m., but it was still dark.  I waited until it was light enough to put on my contacts.  As I knew that it was going to get below freezing, I had my phone in one pocket of my jacket and my water filter in the other.  I forgot about my contacts and when I opened the case, the solution had froze.  Fortunately, they were old, so I put on my spare set.

I got up and stretched.  I was expecting to be sore from the 18 miles the day before, but I was not!  I did my stretching exercises as I boiled water for coffee and ate two Cliff bars.  Shelter #2 is eight miles away.  Shelter #3 is 17 miles.  Shelter #4 is 22 miles.  Because of the early sunset, my only real goal is Shelter #3.

It takes me an hour to get packed up.  I’m going to need to improve that on the PCT.

The hike goes smoothly.  I make Shelter #2 by 11:30.  The sun came out and it was just warm enough to take off my jacket as long as I was out of the wind and in the sun.  I sat and ate my lunch there.  It was beautiful.

I hiked another three miles to a water source.  I ran into two day hikers there.  I filled up my water containers there as Shelter #3 is a dry shelter.  I continued on.

I made Shelter #3 at about 4:30 p.m.  As I approached, I saw another backpacker crossing to the shelter.  Technically, you are supposed to reserve these campsites. I didn’t because I didn’t know how far I would go and it is late in the season.  Its freezing and it is raining.  You’d have to be mad to hike and camp in these conditions.

I had no real choice but to approach.  It was getting dark.  Hopefully, the other backpacker is cool.

Turns out, he was.

He had reserved the site, so I paid him half.  We put up our tents and started to collect wood for a camp fire.  We ended up staying up to nearly 11:00 p.m talking.  It was a great time.

When I went back to my tent for the night, this time I properly set up the quilt.  Instead of using it like a blanket, I used the straps and attached it to my sleeping pad.  That made a huge difference!  I stayed much warmer that night.

My contacts?  In my jacket this time.

Total miles: 17.6.

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