Monday, July 6, 2015

Day 47: A Pleasant Day For a Walk

April 23: By morning, the storm clouds had blown away leaving a beautiful, clear blue sky. It was brutally cold, no less so for the high winds that continued to pelt the shelter, but at least rain was not an issue.

A beautiful sunrise!

The hiking today was largely uneventful. Much of it was easy with well-graded switchbacks. I suffered a small bout of disappointment at Laurel Creek when I spotted an ice chest--trail magic! But when I popped it open, I found it emptied of any cold drinks I had craved. There were some dinners available--the add hot water kind of variety--but I had plenty of food and passed on what was available.

I arrived at Laurel Creek at about 3:00 in the afternoon, and the Four Horsemen had already arrived and set up camp. They even had a campfire already burning! Although the high winds never really stopped, they couldn't reach so deep in this canyon. It was tempting to stop and set up camp with them, but it was too early in the day and the weather too nice for me to quit so early.

I loaded up with water and continued onwards. I decided to camp between shelters far from any water sources so all of the water I'd need for the rest of the day, the night and the next morning I'd have to carry in.

The trail climbed out of the valley containing Laurel Creek, back into the area where winds could reach again. The winds proved to be my biggest difficulty in finding a good place to camp. I didn't want to camp somewhere exposed to the winds that could make cooking difficult or blow away my gear! Eventually I settled for a small area on the side of a hill that overlooked a valley through the mostly barren trees. I could see a town down there far in the distance which I assumed was Bland, a small trail town that everyone on the trail expect for myself was planning to resupply at.

There was a slight breeze all evening and into the night--it wasn't completely protected from the strong winds higher up the mountain, but it was at a manageable level and I cowboy camped feeling that the tarp was unnecessary. A splendid little campsite!

Although it was clear and sunny, the temperatures were brutally cold and the wind fierce, which is why I walked out of the shelter looking like this!

Three of the Four Horsemen taking a lunch break. Blueberry, as you can see, is still carrying around that cow-bone mask. However, he only put it on his face when he stopped. I'm pretty sure he didn't hike with it on! (At least not whenever I saw him hiking.)

The Jenkins Shelter apparently has a severe bear problem! I wouldn't be camping here for the night and didn't much worry about it, but notes in the shelter's register told of a scary story where a bear tried to raid the food here just two night before.

Laurel Creek was my last place to fill up with water until tomorrow.

The trail crosses Laurel Creek on this bridge.

They kind of look like pinecones growing directly out of the ground, don't they? =)

It might have been cold, but spring is in the air!

My campsite for the night, on the side of a mountain. The view of bland is off the photo on the right, and Disciple, who passed me after I set up camp, described my campsite as being on the edge of a "cliff." It's quite steep down that slope, but calling it a cliff seemed like something of an exaggeration to me!

1 comment:

TheKindlyVIkings said...

Those odd flowers look like