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Charlie "Tahoma 29" Hyde
Country: United States
Begins: Apr 22, 2010
Date: Mon, Aug 30th, 2010
Start: Southern Morain of South Sister
End: McKenzie Pass
Daily Distance: 22.8
Trip Distance: 1,903.0
Entry Visits: 482
Journal Visits: 63,410
Guestbook Views: 7,794
Guestbook Entrys: 109
Pacific Crest Trail Map
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A Few Grains are Exciting!
Neither Rain nor Snow nor Sleat nor Hail nor All of the Above Shall Keep This Man from His Appointed Mission!! (but a wrong digit on a phone # will...)
I was cold in my bag last night but nothing too unusual. But noticed a tiny accumulation of white granular stuff on a log nearby and excitedly thought how grandly I could tell people that there had been snow up where I camped. Little did I know what was in store! Within 30 minutes some tiny white stuff like what would come out of frozen fog was hitting me, then tiny flakes, then decent sized ones that began to stick on the ground. Within another 30 minutes I was in a full on winter snow storm with huge flakes and 4-5 inches of snow I was slogging through even losing the trail a couple times in meadows. Have I been beamed by Scotty to the North Cascades in October?? No, this is the end of August in Oregon and a totally wacky storm. I seriously considered hunkering down in the tent and waiting it out but I wanted to get to Sisters and knew if I kept moving and snacked while I went the numb fingers and toes would be ok and as I got to lower elevations it would warm up.
I kept waiting for the snow to stop but it kept going 4 hours until I got to Obsidian Falls where it began to subside and in 1/2 hour turn to rain. Then came the associated problem of all the rapidly melting snow turning the trail into a five mile long frozen mud puddle! No choice but to slosh the feet right through it because the snowy banks of the trail were too slippery to walk on. I eventually passed British Alex and Paparazzi who were working their way down to McKenzie Pass but I never caught Cloudkicker and Princess who were probably a couple hours ahead though I could see their tracks. Greatly excited to walk through the final lava fields to the pass only to discover that the road was closed southbound and very few cars were at the observatory there. No luck hitching with a German family or a couple motorcyclists or a large American family, but unexpectedly a middle aged couple with in-laws offered me a ride in their fancy SUV without my asking. Jeff, Cathy, Jan and Barry from Corvallis and Michigan thus became my Trail Angels for a ride down to the Best Western in Sisters.
Some of my best-laid plans went awry but I spent a fun evening watching mindless TV and eating junk food with my Bellingham buddies Croatian Sensation and Not-a-Chance (aka Serbian Explosion) and Assface who were sharing a room at the BW.
I will close wth the tender little nautical love poem I wrote for them on the trail:
There once was a hiker named Croat,
Who's pecker of wood wouldn't float.
The Serb girl beside him, who'd already tried him,
Cried, "Why won't this fit in my boat??"
The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a 2,650-mile national scenic trail that runs from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon and Washington. The PCT traverses 24 national forests, 37 wilderness areas and 7 national parks. The PCT passes through 6 out of 7 of North Americas ecozones. Learn more: www.pcta.org