Today I nearly climbed Mt. Thielsen. I say nearly because the last 40ft or so was simply too scary for me. It had been a CARS (crazy arse rock scramble), steeply up for more than an hour and following the recommended route I veered right at the top until going forward would mean crossing a vertical drop of hundreds of feet before bouncing the next few thousand. Mucho kudos to Rolling Thunder and his buddies that reached the summit last year. I have no idea what route they took but if it was the one I was looking at they are insanely brave. I’d have done it over deep water but not at the top of a 9,000+ft mountain. Anyway I turned back feeling ok about it, preferring to walk rather than slide down. The view was fantastic, I could even see the surface of Crater Lake. If I’ve given the impression that Oregon is all flat and boring then I have misled you. It sure does have some spectacular parts.
With that diversion I decided not to reach the next water source and camp here on the ridge instead. As I was tidying away dinner (Claudia, I used your dried tomatoes to liven up my couscous, thank you) a chilling breeze came through and I was glad for it. Next to me was my sleeping bag and I love being cozy and warm inside it as the evening settles in.
When I was at the cabin I caught a news report about the death of a bird in Oregon from West Nile Virus. They were telling people to avoid being outside at dusk/dawn and stay away from stagnant water where mosquitos hangout. Hmmmm, I’ve looked ahead for water sources and most of then end with ‘lake’ or ‘pond’ :-/
One more thing. While rounding the Crater Lake Rim this morning I came across five bikers doing a big tour around the country. One lady asked me two questions I haven’t been asked before. Was someone doing a write up on me back in NZ? Do I feel blue sometimes? I started to tell them about feeling bad on the way into Castella but the feelings came right back so I changed course and talked about the memory card with all the videos on.
They were incredibly enthusastic about my trip even to the point that one of the ladies gave me a hug goodbye. It sure gave me a boost and for a while my enourmous pack didn’t weigh so much. They called this couragous, but really it’s just a bunch of consecutive camping trips.
More photos of this day’s journey can be found at Crater Lake to Mt Thielsen