Date: July 2 – 6, 2017
Miles: 1430.1 – 1482.1
July 2 – Today was a day. I woke up to mouse poop in my shoes and dozens of mosquitos just waiting for me to dare to step outside of my tent. I did everything I could to get ready without having to go outside, but eventually I had to, and so I threw my tent into my pack with my other belongings and got the heck out of camp. A bit later that morning when the sun came out and the bugs disappeared, a bear came crashing out of the woods to my left onto the trail in front of me. I had only enough time to yell, ‘holy crap!’ and watch its butt race away from me up the trail like a furry train and disappear into some brush. I walked cautiously behind it, banging my poles together and yelling, ‘heeeey bear’ to make sure it kept going. Then I hiked for the rest of the day until my legs fell off. We camped at Gold Creek, and I accidentally dumped mashed potato powder in my tent and at the same time realized that I lost my spoon somewhere in the last day or so. I went to bed hoping that the bear I saw earlier didn’t have any relatives nearby that love mashed potatoes.
July 3 – I took very few pictures today. The only view I had today was of trees, dirt and streams, and more trees, dirt and streams. I saw a baby deer, some woodpeckers and a red rattlesnake as well, but they were all moving too fast for pictures and frankly I was only interested in making miles so I can get in to Shasta in time for fireworks and refillable root beer. It was a boring day. Those happen from time to time out here and I have to remind myself that they are just as much a part of the experience as easy days with expansive views and trail magic are.
July 4 – 6 We got a ride in to Mount Shasta City with trail angel Kellyfish. As we were walking through town on our way to a KOA campsite, lots of people who were out and about for the July 4th activities stopped us to ask questions about the PCT and offer us food and beverages. We set up at the campground, took showers and did laundry, talked to some hikers we hadn’t seen in a while because they had skipped up to Oregon and were heading southbound, then headed back in to town for dinner. The only thing open was a KFC/Taco Bell, which was gross but we ate too much of it anyway. Later on when it was dark enough, the city put on a fireworks show over a lake and I watched it from a parking lot. The 4th is my favorite holiday and I was glad to be in town. The next day we resupplied and replaced gear at The Fifth Element, a gear shop in town, then bought a bunch of food to cook for dinner. Rhino, another hiker, grilled it all up for us and we ate way too much again.
We decided to stay one more night in town, and the next morning Kellyfish gave us a ride back to the trail. We hiked out into the Castle Crags Wilderness and had the best campsite ever, with the small exception that there were a few mice that came out at night to eat some of Fluffy’s food and chew about thirty small holes in the shirt that I bought the day before. These things happen, I suppose.