PCT Day 118 The Lava Fields 

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  13th August 2015

Mileage 31.5 (50.7)

Bushcamp (1966) to Bushcamp (1997.5)

Of all my 118 days on the PCT this would rate as one of my best days. For it is not everyday that I hike among volcanoes or tramp over lava fields or view stunning vistas. It started with the stunning early morning views of ‘The Sisters’. Off in the distance I could see two large spire like peaks, Mt Washington and snow covered Mt Jefferson.  I didn’t know it at the time, but I was to camp on the other side of Mt Washington this night.

Today was special. But it was also hard work. My poor shoes have suffered being on my feet for 1000 miles now. They are tired, worn out and in need of replacing, which will occur tomorrow. But for now the thin sole allowed me to feel every sharp volcanic rock and there were many today. The lava fields also made travel uphill a rather two steps forward one step back kinda day.

I caught up to an old hiking buddy from the desert, Ladies Man. We hiked and chatted for part of the day. I caught up with him maybe 10 days ago, prior to that I hadn’t seen him since the first week in the trail. The trail seems to work like that sometimes.

The hiking in the afternoon was similarly awesome except I had a rather hard time of it. My body refused to cooperate with my mind. I wanted to walk up this long hill through a lava field but found it too hard. I recruited my stomach to assist me. On the middle of the trail I stopped and cooked an early dinner. This should cure all, I thought. And I was correct, 30 minutes later my body and mind had new found vitality. It was only the setting sun and darkness that stopped me, for I wanted to continue hiking. It’s a strange thing that happens to the thru hikers body and mind. Several weeks ago 25 miles was a huge day, now it’s 30, I suspect in days to come it might be higher. I feel great. 


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