Coffee, oatmeal, deflate neoair, tape ankle, brush teeth, take the down shelter, stuff stuff in sacks, pack everything into packs. Put packs on, pull the straps tight, go. Every morning is almost exactly the same.
Last night if didn’t rain, and today, I don’t think it will either. The sky is thick with mist, but i have faith— it will clear.
I worry about my ankle. It’s sore and large, looks like it maybe has an extra ball floating around in there. Did I grow a new bone? From twisting and turning and prodding?
We climb and we descend, we climb and we descend. At lunch, the bugs are a thick cloud, flying as hard and fast as they can at our mouths, our noses, our eyes. They crave all of our exposed wet spots and it is truly disgusting how few fucks they give. The bugs are both primal and carnal, our orifices are their singular points of focus.
At lunch, we set up the shelter to avoid them. The shelter is a green house and we take off our shirts in the balmy warm. I eat vegan cheez-it’s and we talk about our past relationships and our gender presentations. Do straight people on trail talk about this stuff? Probably relationships yes, gender expressions no. I am so grateful to be queer. We talk about all the most interesting stuff.
After lunch I hike our 9 mile descent with laser like Beyoncé focus. It’s my turn to carry the shelter, it is my goal to get to camp before Carrot and have it ready to dive in before the mosquitos are too thick. I have shooting calf pain, a new curiosity of the body. I have not quite enough food for this section. But the sun is out and soon the shelter is set up and we’re eating dinner in the gloaming. There have been hardly any days without rain in the past three weeks and I don’t care WHAT is going on, nothing can steal this thunder.
📍 This section of the Pacific Crest Trail is on unceded Puget Sound Salishand Columbia-Wenatchi land.