It rained a lot in the night along with thunder and lightening. The alarm went off at 5:30. I reset it for 6:30! I set off before Cool Breeze as he faffs in the morning and he walks faster than me so he always catches me up anyway!
Bit of a climb this morning and it was hot! Really hot. Only little bits of shade from the occasional tree, but beautiful wild flowers.
I stopped after 5 miles because the mosquitoes we all over me. It didn’t matter that I was moving, they were just hanging on. So I covered myself in deet, ate my liquified twix and waited for Cool Breeze.
We walked past a cool lake with a sweet looking little island, but it was too far away from the trail – they always are!!
The next 10 miles were gentle up and downs. We saw Haiku and Mountain Pirhana – the first time since Acton koa (mile 450ish)
We then had a huge switchback section (at least 30 switchbacks) going down a steep hill. Half way down I saw a BEAR!!! He must have been on the trail and as I came around the corner he ran as quick as he could into the forest, a little brown bear. I was beginning to think they didn’t exist. I only saw him for about 2 seconds so there was no time to reach for the camera!
We got our 20 miles done by 3:30pm. Pretty good going compared to the last two days! We arrived in Belden and there was a huge party going on. Hundreds of people, tents and activities. It was quite exciting at first, but I was hot, hungry, tired and therefore a bit grumpy and it all started to annoy me. I was suffering from sensory overload. The music was loud and pumpy, there were so many people and the clothing left little to the imagination and the smells were powerful. I’ve spent too much time in the woods!
So we went to the road to try and hitch the 1.5 miles to Caribou Crossroads to get our resupply boxes before the store closed. We got the second car that came by. The guy was cool – he had been to Glastonbury, celebrated the summer solstice at Stonehenge and has a friend with a restaurant in Covent Garden! We went to the store / post office / cafe building and had ok milkshakes and terrible burgers and picked up our packages. The lady who worked at the store gave us a lift to the trail angels, The Braatens, when she finished work. While we waited for her we spoke to a crazy stoned man on a motorcycle (well, I say we, I made Cool Breeze to most of the talking!).
We stayed at the Braatens, they have a side bit on their house with kitchen, living area, bathroom and couple of bedrooms. You can have your resupply box sent here – they have a lot of boxes!
I had a cold shower and I started sweating again as soon as I got out. It’s so so hot!!
We shared the little apartment with 4 other people, I had a bed for the night but I was led on top of it and I was sweating. It was running down my face. So I blew up my air mattress and slept in the living area next to the door where there was a gentle breeze…