Day 89-July 11th
Destination: Pooh Corner (I-80)
Cumulative Miles: 1202
There are two unfortunate side effects of snow (other than the obvious difficulties of route finding and difficult walking). These occur after the snow begins to melt. One: Bugs and Two: Mud. We have been dealing with the former for some time now, but the latter has been minimal at best so far.
Where usually we have been able to sidestep the serious mud, or the trail was compacted and rocky enough that mud did not form, the conditions seemed to change today. We walked a fair amount (sometimes off trail, as the trail was buried under snow) of today on trails which flowed like rivers, and the earth around and under foot was soggy, slurpy, and suction-y.
"The mud monster tried to eat my shoe." Apricots explained as Psycho turned around to see why she shrieked.
All in all, it wasn't too bad today, but it was a definite difference from our usual run of challenges.
While filtering water and having morning coffee, a Bald Eagle swooped up the road, flying low and offering his enormous wing span as a distant graceful hug for three visiting hikers. Shortly after seeing the eagle, we saw a deer, and twice in the late afternoon, we saw a Pilleated Woodpecker.
The day was spent walking along magnificent ridges with the frequent appearance of the Mules Ears, Lupines, Indian Paintbrush, and the pine trees. At times the landscape was barren, offering moon-like rock which bled into a flowered hillside.
In the afternoon we walked past and paid a short visit to the Peter Grubb Hut, a two story hut/cabin built years ago by volunteers to offer a shelter for hikers and winter adventurers. Four miles later we were at the interstate, and Old Scout had arranged a ride for us to go to the trail angels outside of Truckee, "Pooh Corner."
The angels fed us dinner, offered showers and laundry, and have provided us a place to sleep that is free of mosquitoes (mostly).
We have passed the 1200 mile mark. :)
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