Day 120

Day 120 – mile 2363 to 2391 – Plume of the Future Camp to Snoqualmie Maybe Camp:
If the sunrise was clear and awesome, then I didn’t know it.  My forest journey continued through beautiful old growth forest, and by the time I climbed out of the trees, daylight was in full swing, dazzling blue sky overhead.  Evidence of any fires was slight.  The cap of Rainier poked over the green hills, clearer than it’s been in days, and the jagged peaks to the north that I had wondered at yesterday were just as jagged, only much closer now.  Some locals hiking south bound informed me that I’m going right through them over the next section.  Awesome.
The next stretch was uneventful except for the fact that the water sources that I was counting on consisted of muddy hillsides with a couple stagnant pools.  Not equipped properly to extract water from mud, I was forced to get my water from Lizard Lake, a bit off trail and a bit gross looking.  But it was water, and it got me through the next hot stretch and steep climb up to Mirror Lake.
Mirror was a very nice lake and came at a perfect time for a swim and lunch.  Hot and sweaty from my exertions, the cool blue waters recharged my soul, and absorbed the dirt from my nasty socks and shirt.  I felt like I had the place to myself as I lounged on a log and ate all of my extra food.  However, I soon learned that the lake was within range of day hikers from Snoqualmie Pass.  At around 3pm they all showed up at once, carrying impressive loads of stuff in their arms and causing all sorts of ruckus.  When a crew set up a megatent on the beach not five feet from where I was sitting, I realized that it was time to go.
What should have been an easy, eight mile shot down to the highway, had a surprising amount of uphill.  Despite the obvious popularity of the trail, it was pretty tough with a lot of rocky sections and a healthy dose of elevation change.  Ready for some hot food and really needing to use a restroom, all this served to frustrate me immensely.  I could see and hear the highway just down the hill.  Why was the trail taking me away from it?  Breaking through the trees high on a saddle, it all made sense and I could see my destination.  A quick shot down some ski slopes brought me to my next resupply station, the Chevron at Snoqualmie Pass.
A permanent food truck, Aardvark Express, seemed like the place to be, so I headed there to get my dinner on.  Now I know I used the word ‘salubrious’ in another post not too long ago, but this food was super salubrious.  Some sort of awesome chicken curry did it for me.  It also turned out that they allow hikers to camp next to their picnic benches overnight.  Perfect, free living!  I picked up my box from the Chevron, then headed to the hotel across the parking lot to commandeer some wifi.  Comfortable couches in the lobby, I could be here for a while.
Updates on the fire situation aren’t encouraging, but there’s still some time before I reach a point where I have to make any decisions.  There is rain forecast in the future as well.  For now, I’m excited for this next section.  It should be stunning.




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