The wind shifted in the night but any wind on an exposed ridge like that is enough to keep the mosquitos and dew at bay.
I trundled off down the hill by myself as usual, expecting it to stay that way all day since most of the PCTers take the easier more scenic route. Over the undulating path I met nine southbounders some more talkative than others. I found a nice cold creek for lunch, even took the time to read my book, then ambled on and on through the woods until reaching Willamette Pass. I tried going up to the ski area there to use the payphone but the place was closed. A guy came out to meet me and offered fresh water. The lakes seem clean enough but I still prefer running water.
I set up camp next to the very lovely Lower Rosary Lake. I’d eaten dinner and was doing my dishes when the Noodleheads and Rumble came along and convinced me to go just “1.4 miles” to a hut. Normally I’d hate to repack and move on but I like these two and the hut sounded nice so I got moving, and moving, and still moving. It was well over two miles later that I found them without the hut. Rigatoni had run on ahead and came back soon, also without a hut.
So we set up here by the trail and by my estimate this is my longest day yet. 32.5 miles!
It’s been a little while since I camped with people. We’ve been talking for a while and Rigatoni said if he found a kiwi on the trail without a trailname he’d name them “Heaps” because kiwis say that a lot. It works pretty well for me because of my superlarge pack so I’m thinking of adopting that one. SunWalker has always sounded a bit too new-age for me, and I expect people to give me the peace sign and say “right on” to me.
Today’s food fantasy: Roasted vegetables. Kumara (a New Zealand sweet potato), garlic, parsnip, carrots. Slightly marinated in ruby wine, Worchestershire Sauce and a bit of malt vinegar, then slathered in olive oil.
More photos of this day’s journey can be found at Mt Thielsen to BendDistance today: 32.5 miles. Total distance: 1919 miles