Date: 18 Mar 2019 08:29PM MST
Location: Camping near mile 186.5
Today's Miles: 12.4
Total Miles: 186.5
What a beautiful, rugged day of hiking.
Woke up to the sound of rushing water, camped near the fork of two seasonal streams that are currently flowing very quickly, engorged with all the snowmelt.
Packed up, ate a cold breakfast of rice, ramen, and butter, as well as some of the cheese I've been carrying for the past five days.
Spent the entire morning climbing the remainder of the long climb I started at the end of yesterday, only to be greeted with some of the most rugged and beautiful trail I've ever had the pleasure of walking on. It was like a mini-Sierra, with towering pines, a multitude of snow-melt stream crossings, and a smattering of towering boulders throughout. Incredibly unique terrain, incredibly beautiful terrain.
Made it into the town of Summerhaven later than expected but still with time remaining to hit up the general store for a minor resupply and the only restaurant in town for a burger and some coffee.
Spent the rest of the afternoon in the vestibule of the visitor center charging devices, updating my journal, and downloading some more shows and podcasts for the trail.
Started waking out of town around 1800, bumped into a hiker at the trailhead heading southbound who jumped north to avoid the most recent snowstorm. They planned on sleeping in the vestibule I mentioned earlier, something the town and local police is OK with, especially due to the altitude and how cold it can get up here.
I almost turned around to hang out with a fellow hiker for the night, but decided against it and kept on walking. Sometimes you have to make tough decisions like that, and while I probably should have just socialized a bit (especially since there are so few hikers out here on this trail), I was rewarded with an amazing sunset and a bit of a night hiking since the terrain wasn't cooperating tent site-wise for a mile or two outside of town.
Camped high up in the saddle of a ridge, and it appears that the wind is being blocked by the ridge itself luckily enough. Exposed camping is risky, tents can collapse or even worse, make a snapping sound all night in the wind - here's to hoping it's a quiet and still night.