Location- Near shore of Lake
Elevation- 4,839 ft
Distance Traveled Today- 21.6 miles
Distance Traveled Total- 2,206.2 miles
Weather/Temp- clear, 60s, 70s
Injuries- bee stings
Pain level- low
Days without shower- 4
Today was one of the more eventful days I’ve had in a while. We got another late start around 8 am, and did a slow and steady burn all day.
Not 3 miles into the morning, I was randomly attacked by a bee, getting stung on the top of my right knee. This must have been an Africanized Bee or something, because it hurt a lot worse than most bee stings I’ve had, and it throbbed all day.
Katana had another slammer day, as we’ve continued to push a little further than the previous days. We’ve had zero paw issues, and zero motivation issues; it’s been an absolute dream come true. She’s already falling back into the old swing of things. I was struggling to keep up with her the past two days, but today she maintained whatever pace I set, 3 to 10 feet ahead of me. It put my mind and body at ease, and I was able to hike in a more relaxed state.
At around 5:30 pm, I had one of my most exciting moments on the trail so far. We were walking along a slight incline, when a huge elk with a full rack leapt across the trail about 150 ft ahead of us. Katana didn’t see it, but she heard and felt the noise it made as it trampled through the vegetation. She froze, and I took that moment to hop in front of her and pull out my phone to see if I could catch it on video.
As we approached the site where the elk had crossed the trail, I began to hear and feel the trampling of more hooves and vegetation. Katana jumped in front of me in an attempt to get to the spot first. No sooner did we get there, I once again heard and felt the sound of many hooves very close by, so close that it startled me. When I spun towards the sound, I couldn’t see anything, but the vibrations through the ground and the sounds of vegetation being trampled lasted about 10 seconds before the forest went silent. I leashed katana to my pack and snooped around a bit to try and get one on camera, but they were gone.
It’s funny, because not too long ago, people didn’t take pictures of absolutely everything. When I was younger, I had cameras, but I never took pictures of fish I caught, or snakes, and I was quite obsessed with both. Stories of them were always sufficient. In this digital age that we’re living in, I sometimes feel like if there isn’t picture proof, then it didn’t happen. I almost feel guilty telling a story without a picture to back it up. I don’t know if it’s just me, or if most people feel this way nowadays.
The action wasn’t over for the day, as I got stung by a bee again on the bottom of my right knee, about a mile before where I wanted to camp. What is up with Washington bees? I saw more in California and Oregon, but they could land on you all day without stinging you. These ones in Washington seek you out!
Now were camped by ourselves next to a small lake. We’re 20 miles out from our first Washington town of Trout Lake. It’s very small, but I’ve heard good things. We’ll get in tomorrow evening, or bright and early the next day. The road is supposed to be fairly remote, so it all depends on traffic. Since it’s the weekend, there should be no shortage of people heading to and from the woods.