PCT Day 64: TRT Day 4: Two For One Special

Miles Hiked: 23.8

PCT and TRT Miles: 23.8

Today I get picked up by a trail angel at 7:30am. Me and five other hikers squeeze into the car with our giant packs. All the other hikers get dropped off at Echo Lake but I get dropped off at Carson Pass. If you recall, I left the PCT at a junction for the TRT three miles north of Carson Pass about three days ago. I get dropped off around 9:30am and give the trail angel a donation for gas money. The first three miles of my day are repeated miles.

After I get past the TRT Junction, everything is new and the PCT and TRT will overlap for the next 50 miles. Two for one! I heard it was going to storm this afternoon but the skies look blue for now. The trail is cruisey and I feel so refreshed after a day of no hiking. It’s like someone hit the reset button on my body and I started the trail all over again. The zero worked it’s magic. I absolutely fly through all the miles as clouds gather and turn dark overhead. It’s definitely going to storm now. The trail goes through lots of trees so I feel comfortable despite the looming storm. I put on my rain jacket as drops start to fall from the sky but it’s not bad rain, just a light sprinkle. When I pass under trees it feels as if it’s not raining at all. I hike through a badly burned area as it starts to rain harder. I think this section burned last year. When I reach the road one mile before Echo Lake, a hiker named Roo is doing trail magic at the side of the road with his family. They are hiding in the car but I give them credit for staying out in the rain. I drink a soda and have some fruit before I get so cold from standing in the rain that I must keep hiking. When I get to Echo Lake in a mile, I find thirty hikers hiding under the awning of the bathroom. The sun is coming out but I take a break anyways because I haven’t sat down in so long.

My break isn’t long because I want to leave before everyone else leaves at once. The next two miles along Echo Lake are some of the most annoying miles of the whole trail. It seems like an entire crowd of people are hiking towards me and I stop to step off the trail every 0.1 miles or less. My progress is slow and I can’t get into a hiking rhythm. There are so many people! The trail goes along the lake but it seems like there are lots of private residences along the lake that can only be accessed via foot or boat. I feel weird about it. For some reason these residences feel intrusive but I think it’s just because they are on an alpine lake with no other development around and there are so many of them. Finally I am past the lake and the crowds of people stop.

I start cruising despite all the ankle rolling rocks that cover the trail. The sky is getting darker again and I hear thunder. I pass by Aloha lake that is absolutely stunning. I want to stop but the clouds are coming. I see so many people set up on the shore line and I can see streams of rain zeroing in on me from a distance. Thunder booms and lightning flashes. I put on my rain jacket and quicken the pace. Finally I pull over about a mile later. It’s 6pm and the lightening is scaring me. Realistically I will only walk another hour and a half so I decide to set up camp early. I feel stupid after I get my tent pitched because the sun comes out along with a rainbow. I consider packing up but now my tent is wet and I feel committed to staying here. As I lay in my tent the rest of the evening I feel like an idiot as I hear other hikers walk by. It stays light out til after 9pm and I feel like I wasted one of my favorite days of long daylight hours. At least I will go to sleep early and we’ll rested to hike again tomorrow.

Happy Trails!

-Early Bird

Published by Deserrae Potts

Thru Hiker Blogger

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