Mile 1653 / KM 2660
Mount Shasta to Etna to Seiad Valley
Song of my day: "Kim" by Ryan Adams
Podcast of my day: Criminal
I miss: Nothing at all
Back in the days when I was living with my dad I almost slept through a burglary one night. Two young guys tried to break the locks of the veranda doors but luckily my dad was home at the time and he heroically chased them away. I only woke up when he ripped open the door to my room and yelled at me to call the police after it had all happened. What I'm getting at is, I can sleep through pretty much anything. Snoring, storms, break ins...not here though. In the past few weeks I've noticed a change. Every night I wake up at least 7 times and even if I'm maximum tired after walking 12 hours, a noise that is out of the ordinary will wake me up. It feels like our natural survival instincts come back once we leave the safety of our four walls. The other day I waited for Katie in a really pretty (I'm serious!) burned down forest section. Due to the lack of branches it's usually dead quiet and kind of eerie. I pulled out a snack and sat on my Z-Rest, completely un-relaxed and on edge, and I just listened, chewed, scanned the forest, listened, chewed and scanned again. I thought to myself that this is what the life of a deer must feel like. Always ready to run. The reason for the anxiety might have also been that I had seen 3 big fresh cat prints that morning, which made me feel like I was being watched.
Different topic! Food! OMG I did such a terrible job with my food planning the past week and I ended up with a couple dried tomatoes, 18 dehydrated peas, 6 M&Ms and 3 kind-bars for my last 25 miles. I was starving by the time we got to Seiad Valley. Let me tell you this: Never go resupply shopping after you had a huge breakfast in town. I was walking through the isles thinking "Naaah... I don't really need these crackers" but 4-days-later-Dom would have killed for those crackers! The whole stove-less thing has been a little bit of a challenge for me, and most of the meals I've "cooked" I don't ever want to eat again. But I think I can make it through Oregon without the stove and then get it back for the colder Washington section. I really need some ideas though since I'm getting tired of mashers and cold soaked couscous. I miss those good ol' hot Mountain House days... But I'm doing this to get weight off my feet and so far it's been working and they feel A LOT better. You're never pain-free on the PCT and I feel like my feet are going to hurt until last mile but you get used to the pain and you get used to ignoring it. The inflammation on my foot has decreased so much that it's almost back to normal! For a while I thought I might have to call it quits. Other than that I feel great. Mentally and physically. The scenery has been absolutely breathtaking. NorCal was supposed to be boring but it has been my favourite section on this trip. It's even better than the Sierras. Who would have thought that! The ridge walks are crazy beautiful and you can see the mountains for miles and miles. We hiked out of Shasta at 11am and tackled that 2500 meter climb out of valley which took us a while. I had an other encounter with an angry rattle snake on the way up and I am pretty positive that I will never ever get used to them like others do. They freak me out so much. I'd rather run into 5 bears at once than into one snake. Hopefully they won't have as many snakes in Oregon. Which leads me to the next big news! Oregooooon!!!!!! Oregon is only 36 miles away. After 3 months and 1600 miles of blood, sweat and beers we finally made it here. Well almost, but it feels like we're pretty much there. I love Oregon and I can't wait for those misty twilight mornings. Apparently Oregon will be much flatter than California which calls for higher mileage, so I'll hopefully be able pound out some more thirties. Watch out Oregonians, I'm coming for you!