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Mt McLoughlin, First of the Oregon Volanoes
First a caveat on my spiritual reflections yesterday: I am in no way
suggesting that my prayer or meditation caused the trail to get
flatter and softer or the breeze cooler. What I am saying is that even
though those external things changed for the "better", it's the
internal shift in me that helps me see the world more gently and
happily. As Ben Franklin said, "Nothing is inherently good or bad,
it's the thinking that makes it so." or Milton roughly, "Only Man can
make a heaven out of hell and a hell out of Paradise."
I forgot to mention last night meeting young Jake Nead and his dad
Dave. I actually met Dave first at the trailhead leaving Ashland. He
was waiting for Jake who's thru-hiking this year. They're from
Gresham, OR and Dave's helping his son with resupplies, meals etc.
Yesterday Dave was waiting at Hwy 140 with water, oranges, Snickers
bars and Mountain Dew and then in the evening Jake and I went 2,.5
miles off the trail to Four Mile Lake where Dave heated up some of his
homemade chili, delicious. I did however discover what you probably
already knew, Mountain Dew before bedtime is not a good idea!
This morning Dave cooked breakfast burritos with sausage and
mushrooms. Didn't get back to the PCT until about 8:30 and with the
terrain more rugged today and the temp hotter we didn't make as good
time, 23.8 trail miles plus 2.5 off trail miles makes 26.3, not bad
but I'm still left with 22.2 for tomorrow which doesn't get me to the
Crater Lake Lodge and rest as early as I'd hoped. But I will make it,
have a nice bath, sink wash my clothes and have a nice dinner in the
Oh, I also forgot to mention the mice or deer that three nights ago
chewed though and made off with the right waist belt of my pack. They
must have been after the salt from all my sweat. They almost chewed
through the left strap as well but had no interest in the Hostess pies
I had in the back pouch. At any rate REI is shipping me a new pack at
Mazama Village, a few miles from the lodge.
What else?...new blister on right pointer toe, big toe's infected
again but cleaned as well as I could and bandaged with antibiotic,
heels of socks are gone, heard a really cool new bird call that sounds
a lot like those squeaky blower things you get at birthday parties.
Met three section hikers in their seventies. Inspiring and hope I'm
still doing it at their age.
Mosquito netting is a wonderful thing as are sit down toilets. I'm
rambling...Thanks for your support!
How cool is that?!? I just went out for a final pee before bed and
discovered who's been fluttering around outside, a big grey owl
sitting in a tree overlooking my tent and rotating his head when I
"whoo" at him. I don't think I've ever seen one in the wild before!
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