Miles Hiked: 28.9
PCT Mileage: 2208
This morning I woke up and got ready in the dark at Cascade Locks. I hiked out of the Marine park with Trail Diva and Midnight as the sun came up. We began the day by walking towards the bridge of the gods. Today we will start hiking Southbound on the PCT. The first two miles were a very flat and nice paved walking path next to the main road. The trail was sheltered from the noisy road with a tunnel of green trees fuzzy with moss and rows of bushes with juicy black berries on them. I stopped to pick some occasionally as I tried to keep up with my friends. They tasted like candy when they were good. Eventually we ended up on the Eagle Creek Trail. This is technically an alternate route to the PCT and a very popular day hike as there are many famous water falls along the trail. I was excited for this day!
Despite the crazy elevation gain I saw on my map, the trail sloped gently upwards for the first eight miles or so. We walked through a deep narrow gorge with a creek running far below us down the middle of it. The trail hugged the side of the gorge walls. It was incredible that anyone could build something like that there. A fall off the side of the trail would probably result in severe injury if not death. The trail was wide enough to not have to worry about that though. I was glad we were on the trail early so we didn’t have to pass too many hikers going the opposite direction. I had a lot of fun hiking together with Diva and Midnight. The best part of the eagle Creek trail was tunnel falls. The trail goes through a tunnel made behind a tall gushing waterfall. The tunnel is completely covered with green moss on all sides so it looks like something from Alice in Wonderland. About a mile after Tunnel Falls the trail became less popular and wasn’t maintained very well. Right before I got back on the PCT, the trail went very steeply up for two miles. The sun was very hot and I was so fatigued the whole way up despite just having a zero day. Just like Shasta, the grade was so steep that it worked totally different leg muscles I haven’t had to use in so long.
Once back on the PCT, I took a nice break at some picnic tables near the trail junction. It’s always so nice to have a place to sit especially in the shade! We continued on 14 more miles to camp. I hiked on and off with both Diva and Midnight. We got our first on trail view of Mt. Hood from Oregon. Tomorrow we should be walking up to it! We only saw three other south bound hikers today and about 20 north bounders. When getting water late in the evening right before camp, I wondered how all the hikers we saw would even find a spot to camp tonight because there were not many spots on the thickly wooded ridge we just crossed. We set up camp for the night at Lolo Pass just as nightfall hit.