23rd July 2015
Mileage 25 (40km)
Bushcamp (1550) to Ridgecamp (1575)
I woke in the early hours of the morning from the cold and was unable to get back to sleep. Should I eat something to get my metabolism warmed up, I thought to myself. The condensation from the cold night air soaked my tent and sleeping bag. Normally an early riser I failed to get moving, I wanted my friend the sun to help me out of bed.
I packed the wet gear and set off on nice easy graded trails. Smoke filled the valleys. The trail grapevine told of a fire in Napa Valley, many miles away. The smoke being carried by the winds to choke the view of the jagged mountain ranges of the Trinity Alps. I was really looking forward to this section of trail.
We seem to have found ourself in a large bubble of hikers. Our small group of four hikers, Mr & Mrs Smith, Teflon and myself (Shepherd) has swollen to about 14 of us. We all walk at about the same pace and the same distance each day and all the hikers are cool company to be with.
During the day we meet at each successive watering point. Campsites can be limited in areas of the rocky ridgelines. When the sun sank low in the west we made our way to a small known campsite on an exposed rocky ridge overlooking the Trinity Alps Wilderness.
It was only a small camp according to the guidebook, big enough for 1 tent. We managed to find enough space for 9 tents. I was in a rock covered area but fine.
One of my favourite times of day is dinner time. We always find a communal area to cook and swap stories. That end of day socialising is one of the great experinces of hiking the PCT. I’m happy to share the experience with similar great people.
As I sat in my tent waiting for my eyes to close I could hear calling from cattle in a nearby meadow below. Some of them have loud cowbells. How is it that cattle are aloud to graze in wilderness areas?