Friday, September 23, 2016

Day 142- Car Wash

Sept 21, 2016
Lemah Creek(2411.3) to Campsite (2437.3) 26 miles 
Total up/down: +6,455/-5,064 feet

It rained very hard last night. I was so glad that I had already set up camp and was warm and dry inside of my tent. When I woke up there was a light layer of frost on the ground. By the time I was ready to go it had stopped raining and it looked like I would manage to avoid being rained on while I hiked. I was excited by the prospect of staying dry. My excitement was short lived. I should have known better than to believe that I could stay dry. Did I learn nothing from my time on the AT? Rain over night meant that all of the foliage was wet. Considering that the first part of the day was hiking through overgrown brush I didn't stay dry for very long. It was like walking through a car wash. 
Approaching the car wash... At least it was pretty

I made it through the overgrown area pretty quickly. I spent the next three miles hiking straight uphill. I enjoyed the workout and it helped me to warm up. I spent over an hour switchbacking my way up the mountain. I had the same view all morning, but the higher I climbed the clearer I could see the mountains around me. They were reminiscent of Kings Canyon National Park, my favorite section of trail to date. 
View from 3,500 feet
Final view from 6,000 feet

I had such a pretty view that I decided this would be a good place to have second breakfast. I ate my poptart while enjoying the beauty around me. By ten o'clock the clouds had cleared and the sun came out. Today was a very difficult day of hiking, but I didn't mind. I had warmed up and the sun was shining. I was at a high enough elevation that most of the foliage had turned into the most vivid colors. The maples were an amazing shade of red and I walked through a huge huckleberry patch with shades of orange and red. As a bonus the huckleberry shrubs still had berries. I ate my fill before moving along. 
Vivid red
A sea of color, plus fresh wild berries 

I hiked past more lakes than I could count. They were an amazing shade of blue. Almost as vivid as Crater Lake, but not quite. The numerous lakes of Washington have really impressed me. If only it was early August. I would take my time and swim in each and every lake. 
Deep lake

I had a few potentially difficult stream crossings, but I managed to find a dry path across them all. It wouldn't have mattered too much though, my feet remainder slightly wet all day. 
Thank goodness for logs

This section of Washington has definitely been a highlight of the trip. Even with the bad weather and difficult terrain I have thoroughly enjoyed myself. I made it into camp just before dark. My maps showed a reliable water source in the area, but I had difficulty finding it. I followed a dry stream bed for what seemed like an eternity. I was just about to give up when I heard the tell tale signs of water nearby. I was able to collect ice cold clear water with out any difficulties. Finding my way back to camp was another thing. I had one moment of shear panic when I thought I had gone the wrong direction. I decided to walk just a little bit farther when I saw a familiar landmark. Once back to camp I setup just as the sun was setting. I had to cook and eat in the falling light, but at least it wasn't raining... Yet. Once the sun set it got cold really quickly. I got into my sleeping bag as soon as I finished eating. It was so cold out that I decided to skip writing my blog post for the day. I snuggled up in my sleeping bag and fell asleep immediately. 
Another wonderful Washington day 

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassions, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


  1. Washington in early fall, on the list... It looks beautiful though I bet you need that 10 degree bag now!

  2. Absolutely brilliant day - the peace must be fantastic - nearly there too!!!! Enjoy

  3. I love the pictures of the fall colours. I totally understand why Tessa put this part of the country on her to visit (hike) list. Keep up the good work.

  4. Really glad you weren't rained on even though the flora put some damp on you. Still, wild, beautiful, colors surrounding azure lakes untrammeled by the crush or man....envious is much too tame a word for this Yoda fan. Thanks again for sharing. GO YODA!

    Double G

  5. The picture of stream you crossed with the fall colors beakoning you forward was lovely. Must be a lot of moments to enjoy. I look forward to seeing all your pictures that you haven't been able to post. We will stay tuned for your video's. LY

  6. What a beautiful blog post - pics, stories and outstanding quote. The colors are incredible. Thank you Yoda. Enjoy!

  7. Totally agree with the previous comments - such stunning colors and beautiful lakes! "Eye candy" for sure! Thanks for blessing us by sharing your journey!

  8. I went for a walk in the woods with my husband and 8 month old and thought of you. I've started listening to the Sounds of the Trail. It's very good!
    I'm exciting to read about your final steps

  9. Beautiful!! Glad you had the opportunity to see that beaver and the elk - very cool! The scenery is breathtaking! I look very forward to reading your blog entries.
    Yes, thank you for sharing your amazing journey with us!!

  10. Ok mom. Can't seem to track our girl on where's Yoda anymore. Is our girl ok? Maybe the tracking device has died. We are all ready to throw our arms in the air when she completes the last couple hundred miles.

  11. Our girl has not had cell for posting. Hopefully, today. Our In reach still shows us where she is. 143 miles to go. We are ready, too. Thanks for you checking in.