Day 144: Two Medicine

Miles Hiked: 5

Total Milage: 2494.6

This morning, Matt, Dev and I all woke up at 5am. It was dark as I got ready. Since I lost my head lamp it was very hard to see and get everything packed up. We all got into the car and then drove to pick up Legs and Grey Goose from their hostels. We were on the way to the Two Medicine Ranger Station to get permits. The Ranger station didn’t open until 8am but getting backcountry permits for Glacier National Park especially on a holiday weekend is competitive. After walking over 2,000 miles to get here, I wanted to make sure I had the best schedule possible. When we got there, Ohm was laying down in his sleeping bag right in front of the building. He got there at 4:30am. I was second in line and then Legs and Grey Goose. Eventually all the other hikers I saw in the Bob Marshal and a few weekenders showed up. There was a whole crowd of hikers by 7am. Approximately 20 people. The anticipation and nervousness was building.

At 7:15am a ranger came out and gave us some clip board with instructions. We were to fill out our information and select campsites based on the most updated availability they could give us. They told us to have three plans prepared because it’s likely that the first plan won’t work out based on the number of people applying. There is more than one ranger station giving out permits in the park this morning, and Two Medicine is one of the least popular places to get a permit. The ranger also informed us that up to four people can be on one permit and that not all group members needed to be present. I was a little bummed to be finishing the trail alone. I’m sure it would have still been just as awesome but some company would be great. It ended up working out perfectly that legs was hiking with two other people (including her husband (Darwin) and Machine) and I could be the fourth person in their group. That way I wouldn’t have to take away a spot from other hikers! I had a fun time with Legs, Darwin, and Machine in the Bob Marshal wilderness so I was excited to spend some more time with them! They are some of my favorite people I have met on the trail so far. Legs and I sat down and did the work sheet together. We quickly realized that due to very limited spots and lots of campsites being booked up that there were no ideal options for us. The most ideal option still involved hiking a 34 mile day. I didn’t want to do that at all but we had no choice.

When it was 8am a ranger was immediately entering Legs and I’s information into the computer system and booking our spots. Luckily we were able to get our plan A option even though it still involved the long day. Lots of other hikers had to choose their second option and also didn’t have ideal days.

After getting permits, I felt so relieved. We drove back to East Glacier. Matt dropped Dev and I off on the side of the road where they picked me up yesterday. I walked the last four miles into town with some awesome company. They flew by a lot faster than they otherwise would have. Thanks for walking with me Dev! Next I checked into the “Looking Glass” hostel where I paid $15 to sleep on the floor and picked up my packages. My mom sent me an awesome last resupply, my dad sent me his headlamp, my sister mailed me some delicious deserts, and I mailed myself my last pair of shoes! I love reviving mail on trail. I spent time alone hanging out in my sleeping bag and doing some chores while Dev and Matt went on a hike. I got things charged, did laundry, showered, and ate while they were gone. By the time they came back I was starving. We all went to the Mexican place again. I had a veggie burrito. Afterwards, Dev and Matt said goodbye and I went back to the hostel to go to bed and make some calls. It’s the last time I’ll have serve until I am done most likely! I will see Dev and Matt when I finish the trail. I’ll be staying with them in Whitefish until my flight leaves.

Happy Trails!

-Early Bird

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