Friday, September 12, 2014

PCT Mount Hood to the Columbia River day 1:

Day 3
Day 4
Day 5

Mount Hood to the Columbia River day 1
Trail mile 2107 -2111.5  4.5 miles

After two failed attempt to hike sections of the PCT to the end of Oregon at Cascade Locks this summer, I decided to give it one more try.  This time was easier for me.  The altitude was lower and I was probably in better shape from my previous section hikes this year.

I hiked with Aimless again this time.  On Saturday I made the three hour drive to Cascade Locks and I attended PCT days.  PCT days was Okay.  I did not buy raffle tickets this year because I remembered how long the raffle lasted last year.  I ended up sitting for hours held hostage by my raffle tickets hoping for my number to be called.  My number was never called and my entire afternoon was wasted.  

Camping on Thunder Island was fun in spite of all of the train racket.  Sunrise, sunset and moon rise were all very pretty there.  I enjoyed looking at all the different kinds of tents that people had.

On Sunday after PCT days were over trail angel Sage Girl gave us a ride to Timberline Lodge where Aimless picked up her resupply box.  While she sorted through her box I wandered around the lodge and found the area where hikers were hanging out.  There was some sort of wine tasting event in the lower building where the hiker box was and we got kicked out of there pretty fast, so we mostly hung out at the Lodge.
I pawed through the hiker box but it was gross.  Everything was coated with a layer of oatmeal and mashed potatoes.  Everything in the box felt dusty and nasty and there was a two inch deep layer of potato flakes and oatmeal in the bottom of the box.  The entire box needs to be dumped out.  I also found a dirty shirt and a few other gross things in the box.  A few hikers left their empty priority mail boxes in the hiker box as well.
I had only packed 4 nights worth of food so I needed something for this first half day.  I thought I would find it in the hiker box. Aimless gave me some of her extra food before it could go into the dirty box, so I had enough for the first night. 
I sprained my good ankle on the sidewalk while Aimless was sorting her resupply.  This was not a good way to start a hike, but luckily I had packed a spare ankle brace so I put it on and wore it for the rest of the hike and my ankle was fine.  So once again I hiked with a brace on each ankle.

Supplies at Ski store

Mosaic in Lodge

Hiker Box It does not look gross,
but trust me, it feels very gross

Hiker Box

We did not partake in the buffet of wonder at the Mount Hood Lodge

The buffet of wonder at the Mount Hood Lodge

The buffet of wonder at the Mount Hood Lodge

Packs parked near the buffet line
We started hiking at 2:30 and set the bottom of Zigzag canyon as our goal. I wanted to camp at a lower elevation, we were both feeling the effects of elevation where the lodge sits at 6,000 feet.    I thought the best use of this half day would be to acclimatize and not hike too far.  Fall colors were out on Mount Hood and we traversed in and out of forests and dry barren looking volcanic landscapes. It reminded me of Mount Saint Helens in places. Mount Hood is quite bare looking above the tree line with all the snow melted at the end of summer.

The trail is paved here

We did not find camping at the bottom of Zigzag Canyon but we did find dry camping on the far rim. I did not ask for water, but a passing through hiker who was headed to Sandy River for the night gave me some water that he had carried from Timberline and was planning on dumping, so I had plenty of water for the night. Aimless was low on water but she did not want to take water from anyone, because she worries about germs a lot. I filtered the water that the hiker gave me even though he said it was tap water.

Zigzag River

I pitched my tent on the edge of an amazing overlook with just 5 or 6 feet between my front door and the abyss. I expected wonderful views of the stars, but what I got instead was blinded by the full moon all night long. I did not sleep well at all.
Aimless opted to pitch her tent in the woods. I heard things walking down the trail in the night as my tent was right almost on top of the trail.

What?  How can they close the PCT?

Wonderful wall of bryophytes

Wonderful wall of bryophytes


View from my first campsite

My three person tarp tent.. maybe it's time for me to downsize?

Home for the night

Day 3
Day 4
Day 5

No comments: