I drink an iced coffee. I drink a green smoothie. I drink a kombucha. I eat a banana with peanut butter. I eat two sides of hash browns. I cover them with hot sauce and ketchup. I salt everything now, lots of salt, there’s never enough salt. I eat many bites of Carrot’s pancake. It’s not vegan or gluten free, I’m sure and for that I will suffer. I download more music. I download Beyoncé’s Homecoming from Netflix to watch in the tent. I check and recheck social media, my email. There’s no reason not to hike now, I did all of the things. It’s almost 2 PM and it’s time to go.
Bogwitch, Carrot and I head up under ski gondolas, back to the PCT. I am hiking heavy (all the food) and tired (Carrot and I stayed up very late touching and kissing and whatnot) and I am S L O W slow. It’s not raining though. The trail isn’t too steep. I’m not too cold and I’m not too hot. I zone out in my slow world, think about what makes a good book vs. a bad book, thinking about my hands on Carrot’s skin, thinking about my childhood. Everything is muddy or rocky, but god it could be so much worse. It’s hard to be mad, and so I don’t bother.
8.8 miles in there’s a sparkling blue jewel of a lake. Bogwitch, Carrot and I pitch our tents here, cook our meals around a log and an extinguished fire pit. I make macaroni and cheese and I’m surprised to see the white flavor instead of the orange. I mix it with peas and eat chips while my noodles boil, contentedly chewing as I wait.
It’s cold here, too cold for much socializing and we’re all tired besides. We blow our neoairs and we pull out our quilts. We lay our heads down at seven PM, and with that— we’re out.
📍 This section of the Pacific Crest Trail is on unceded Puget Sound Salish and Columbia-Wenatchi land.