September 3, 2017
Camp: Down by the Skagit River
We woke up early because we were unsure of how much more bushwacking we had before we hit a trail or road. It was maybe a mile of fighting alders and kelly humps on the old road, the wall from yesterday continuing to the end of the road. We eventually crossed through a barrier of boulders onto a wide dirt road and a man drove by in a Subaru. We chatted for a few minutes and then we resumed walking and he drove on to check the area out for elk.
The road wasn’t bad to walk, though it was getting pretty hot. We listened to a podcast and got a ways through it when the man in the Subaru returned and offered a ride to town. We decided that we had walked enough road and were fine with missing the last few miles to town. It was minor enough, yet saved us a lot of time.
The town of Hamilton was small but made a killer Philly cheesesteak omelet! We enjoyed the greasy spoon breakfast (it was afternoon but they served it all day). Then we walked on the rail trail/bike path on to Lyman. As we walked out of town we noticed that everyone built there homes on tall foundations, a sign that the town must see a lot of flooding. We later found out that the town floods so regularly that FIMA offered to relocate them but they insisted on staying. Now there is no flood insurance offered to residents and they can’t get mortgages for new homes. You can probably figure out the quality of the town left behind and the residents who choose to stay.
The couple of hours to Lyman were easy on the flat trail and big juicy blackberries lined the way. We stained our fingers and mouths purple and made it to Lyman where we met up with Cave and Jet. The four of us had missed each other back at the trailhead for Park Butte and were only now catching up. We went to grab some food at the grocery store and then all went to dinner at the restaurant. A local there told us where we could camp for free by the river, so we made our way down there as it grew dark.
It turned out that we had been talking with the town mayor, and his wife was hanging out camping by the river too. We ended up joining their beach party and cowboy camping nearby. They were a fun group!
We only have to walk about 8 miles to Sedro Woolley tomorrow. This section is really strange…hopping through these little towns as we make our way to the Olympic Peninsula. It doesn’t seem like hiking, but I certainly like being able to eat all of this food!