Elevation- 2,346 ft
Distance Traveled Today- 30.2 miles
Distance Traveled Total- 1498.7 miles
Weather/Temp- clear 80s 90s
Injuries- sore feet, ankles and knees
Pain level- moderate
Days without shower- 4
The cool air and hypnotic river had me sleeping in this morning and not hitting the trail until 8am.
Warmed up the old legs with 2.5 miles of easy walking along the river, then it was up, up, up 1,600 ft, then down to a nice footbridge and another river. I spent nearly an hour having lunch here and talking to a few other hikers. Since I planned a full resupply in the upcoming town, I gave away the rest of my snacks that I didn’t eat for lunch to a male hiker named Suds, who is hiking on a budget, and was running low on food.
Next it was on to tackling the 2,100 ft climb that lay ahead of me. The first half was actually quite steep, but the second was fairly gradual. By the way, when I say “steep,” I mean steep for the PCT, which really isn’t much steeper than a handicap ramp.
On the way up, I was rewarded with the most spectacular view of Mt. Shasta yet. It was the perfect distance; not so far that you couldn’t make out the details, and not so close that you couldn’t take it all in without feeling overwhelmed.
Once rounding the crest of the climb, it was a long gradual descent towards Interstate 5. I was determined to get into town tonight, then back on the trail tomorrow.
About a mile and a half from the Interstate, I ran into yet another Rattlesnake on the trail. This one was actually very big, with a slight green tint to it; the first I’d ever seen like this. It’s too far north to be a Mojave Green, so I have no clue. I made a video of me chasing it off the trail, then moved on. This was Rattlesnake number 11 for the journey, and number 4 for northern California. I couldn’t be happier.
I hit the Interstate and the 30 mile mark at about 7:30 pm. I’d done 90 miles in 3 days, a new record; 100 in 3 days will be the next milestone. The town of Dunsmuir was only a little over 3 miles away, and since interstates are crappy and dangerous to hitch on, I decided to start walking with the hopes of some local picking me up.
I made it a mile and a half before before a middle aged woman named Mona pulled over and drove me the rest of the way into town, dropping me off in the middle of Main Street. It was 8:30 pm when I had dinner at a Mexican restaurant, and well after 9 when I finished.
Stepping out into the dark in the middle of another strange town. I weighed my options; stealth camp somewhere, or find lodging.
There were houses and private property everywhere, so I called a few nearby hotels, but there were no vacancies. I finally found one with rooms over a mile away, so it was back to walking again, in the pitch black of a very old looking neighborhood.
I need to get to the town of Mt. Shasta tomorrow so I can pick up a surprise care package at the post office. I guess somebody who reads my blog was able to coordinate with my girlfriend on Facebook and get something sent out. I’m looking forward to the surprise! I just have to get to Shasta…