Camping: PCT mile 1913.03
I woke up to a very chilly morning and an orange glow coming through the trees. It wasn’t too cold on my little ridge, but as I hiked down into the woods below the air turned considerably colder. It reminded me of a late fall morning, and I even came upon spots of frost on the ground. I hiked fast to stay warm and kind of enjoyed the coolness as I hiked. It sure beats sweating first thing in the morning. I came upon Diamond View Lake around second breakfast, and found a log to prop myself up against. I looked out over the pristine lake towards Diamond Peak as I ate a macaroon. I found some delicious gluten free macaroon cookies at the Ashland Co-op that make a great second breakfast. There are 2 in all of my supply boxes, but for the surprise box I will receive today. Since I didn’t have the time or resources to get a box shipped via UPS, my wonderful cousin Elena rose to the task. I gave her a few ideas, but ultimately let her have fun with it. I looked forward to opening the box as if it were Christmas day but had to finish my 11 mile hike to Shelter Cove first.
The forest became even more decidedly Oregon than it has yet. The groundcover became more thick and lush, even displaying plants that are typical only to the Pacific Northwest. The closer I get the more at home I feel, and the more pride I feel to call Oregon home. One of my favorite Pacific Northwest plants is Vanilla Leaf, a simple plant with 3 distinct leaves and one simple flower stalk that blooms earlier in the season. I used to call it “Angel Plant,” before I knew its proper name, as the leaves resemble angels wings. If you put a leaf in your pocket, it emits a vanilla fragrance as it decays. I’ve been waiting for the first sighting of one since arriving in Oregon and was elated to come upon some today. I immediately stuffed some leaves in my pocket as I strode merrily towards my destination.
I followed a cool, clear, flowing river for the last mile or so, completely enamored with the feeling of this forest. It eventually led me to a small road and the entrance of Shelter Cove Resort. I followed the winding driveway towards the main store, seeing other hikers strewn about on the lawn and porch. I had been alone for 3 days so it felt great to see other hikers again. Caboose and Sacred Cow were there,and we quickly caught up with the last few days. We had been only 2 miles apart when the storm hit, and about that distance over the next few days as well. It’s funny how that can happen out here, and how frequently. They told me the coffee was good in the store (a passion we all share), so I wandered inside and there found Danger Spoon. I thought for sure he was long ahead of me but he too had been mere miles ahead. It was really nice to see him again, and we vowed to catch up momentarily. I ordered a breve and inquired about my box; that’s when I was informed that UPS didn’t arrive until after 5pm. Looked like I’d be “forced” to make a day of it here. I drank coffee with Danger Spoon and caught up with some old pals I haven’t seen since the desert. Duckets was there, as well as Microwave who I hadn’t seen since Tehachapi (over a thousand miles ago!). There were also lots of faces I didn’t recognize, but everyone was in good spirits and hanging about in the sun.
Danger Spoon, Caboose and Sacred Cow all hiked out while I waited for UPS and then Switch hiked in. She and I were sitting around chatting when Biscuit arrived too. I haven’t seen her since Tahoe, but that was merely in passing. We had really not seen each other since Lake Isabella, which was around mile 625. We’ve always gotten along really well, so it was especially great to see her. We all sat around chatting while we waited for boxes.When finally the brown truck pulled in, we all cheered and lined up to sign for our boxes. Mine was huge! I knew it was full of lots of goodies when I saw the size, and other hikers sensing extra food hovered nearby as I opened it up. There were so many good treats, things I never would think to ask for, or even buy…yet everything was so perfect. I was a bit overwhelmed with people eyeing me for giveaways, and trying to conceptualize what I would actually eat and be able to carry. There was more than enough food, so I was able to pick out the best of it to take with me on this next leg. The rest was given to other hikers or traded for ibuprofen, which I had forgotten to both buy and ask for. It fortunately worked out perfectly.
All packed and resupplied it was already 7pm. I was not interested in staying at the resort, so decided to at least get back on trail to find camping. I hiked about 3 miles and came upon a ridge overlooking the lake. I admired the view and nestled my tent between 2 trees. Biscuit, Switch and Birdbath joined me, and we all watched as darkness enveloped the whole scene. Now, we are all ready for bed and a new day of hiking tomorrow. Goodnight.