Sunday, July 08, 2018
Trying to tie the last bits and pieces of this year's section hike together almost is like herding cats who are chasing mice.
It wasn't until July 4th that I finally finalized my resupply and taped the boxes shut. I mailed them the next day. That debate revoled around the first leg of the journey. Do I do an 8 day carry of food or take the chance on a forest service road hitch thus dividing that weight up? I'm doing the later, which now means there's another delay or hustle I will encounter to avoid a Sunday arrival at a Post Office.
I'm also debating the tent choice. Do I take the ultra light Z-pack tent which in 18 ounces yet has tiny usable space inside. The grey Six Moon tent seen in this year's photos with its floor-less design and awkward zipping bug screen. Or do I return to what I dub the Green Beast which hasn't seen the woods since I mailed it home in Damascus VA from the AT? The Green Beast is a Six Moon designed tent weighing in at 24 ounces, lots of floor space, and a good to zip bug screen. I suffered condensation issues in the humidity of the East 4 summers ago hence sending it home. My concern is weight and bugs. My choice of going to Washington at this time is based on the least likely hood of being caught in the notorious down pours of the Northwest.
Speaking of the Northwest, NorCal/Southern Oregon shut down the I-5 due to wildfire. Callahan's Lodge, south of Ashland OR, evacuated a day or so ago. The fire season is taking a toll on hikers and communities, again. So far nothing is being reported in Washington. The Facebook forums are popping up with rides wanted, not urget calls to bail out at rhe next exit trail. When I'm on the trail Facebook is one of the last places I go as battery life is connection and navigation juice. My folks know how to reach me.
I will have my SPOT satellite device with me but it's one way communication. Public gripe to that company and their competition, release the new versions in the winter not in the middle of the thru-hiking season. You forced my hand to commit to an antiquated device. The new devices, which are just releasing this month, provide 2 way com's thus alerting hikers and other users to the immanent dangers that happen and where cell services are not available. Yes, folks there's a lot of territory in the West without coverage contrary to the advertisement maps. Complaint over.
I am fortunate this year to be at the forefront of the NoBo bubble with so many skipping sections and encountering the SoBo bubble as they just started this past week or so. With so many, I project, to be on the trail communication with travel rapidly. Another reason why I chose this season for this section.
I sit outside this morning enjoying the cool of the day before the Valley gets hit with another tripple digit day. Where will this day lead? Not on a hike but most likely to the gym for an hour or so amongst the to do list of today.
Hike on, Hike Wise