a journey of 2,652 miles
THE PACIFIC CREST TRAIL 2018
starts with a single step.
Miles 2209.9 to 2214.7. Wet meadow camp to Trout Lake.
Wet wet wet. Everything is wet. When we remove our sleeping pads we see that our entire ground sheet is lying in a pool of water. And it’s still raining. We try to pack our stuff inside out, meaning we first remove the inner tent while we keep the rain fly on and then pack everything else before we take down the rain fly. It kind of works, but our stuff still gets pretty wet. BigBro is still in his tent, wondering how he should take down his tent. Luckily we arrive in Trout Lake today. Of course I had to pee at night in the rain. Always great timing, thank you my dear bladder.
We don‘t take breaks. No breakfast, no lunch. Why would we? How could we? It‘s constantly raining and whenever we stop we get cold quickly. So frozen Snickers bars for breakfast while hiking it is. Aaaah! This is no fun. We are completely soaked. Another 12 miles (= 3.5 hours) to Trout Lake. Really? In Switzerland we wouldn‘t even leave the house if we didn‘t absolutely have to. At least the terrain is fairly easy. And just when I wonder how I am supposed to keep going for so much longer, we reach a parking lot. There are some trucks and campers there but it looks abandoned. There is a trail register there and while we sign it with frozen fingers and shaking hands, we hear someone calling out to us. We turn around and find a guy standing there, in his fifties. He asks us whether we want a ride to Trout Lake. I can‘t believe it. Did someone actually hear me when I was praying up towards the sky, asking for a miracle? Dario and I look at each other, we really can‘t believe our luck. I mean, yes, we would skip another 12 miles, but really, who cares? Still, Dario is unsure, thinking that maybe we should push through? At that moment the sky opens up and releases more precipitation than we have ever encountered before on this trail. Along with hail and wind. We think no more. Yes of course Tim, we would love a ride with you!!! He says he will be ready in about 15 minutes, which is perfect because it might give BigBro time to catch up with us and decide if he wants to come along. And indeed, there he is. And while he completely understands our decision he insists to keep going. We give him our rain mitts and he hands over his tent (so we can start drying it in Trout Lake) and Tim prepares some peanut butter and jam sandwiches for all of us. We really admire BigBro‘s determination. Of course we could do it too, but why, why, would we do this to ourselves? He has never skipped a single mile though, so it‘s definitely understandable that he wants to keep going.
Our feet are frozen by now and we happily climb into the car and drive towards Trout Lake. Thank you so so much Tim, you really helped us out!
We reach Trout Lake and check in at the General Store where we also booked one of their two rooms for the three of us. In the store we run into Benjamin Button again whom we haven‘t seen since Northern California. The rooms aren‘t ready yet so we go over to the church/community centre and hang up our tents to dry in the huge gym. Then we head over to the restaurant and order the usual: burgers and fries and cokes. We are still wet because we couldn‘t change yet but life is already treating us very well now.
Finally we can check into our room where we take long baths, hang everything up to dry and do laundry. It‘s warm and cozy and we are so so happy. BigBro reaches town in the late afternoon and is completely soaked but claims that it wasn‘t too bad. We had shipped two boxes here which we now organise. We have way too much food considering that we already carried too much to begin with. We put the rest in the hiker box and then put on some dry clothes and walk over to an inn to have dinner. The food is fabulous and a funny cat keeps us company.
On our way back to the general store I promptly walk into a large puddle. My dry clothes? Not so dry anymore!
Luckily the room is nice and warm, I hang up the clothes to dry and we make ourselves comfortable in the room watching Ocean‘s 8. But we are all really tired and fall asleep pretty soon.
Let’s just hope that the weather will give us a break now. Can‘t cope with that much rain. The cold is fine, we always heat up when we hike, but the rain - no, thank you very much!