Our lightweight packs greatly assist us in walking 20 miles per day on the Pacific Crest Trail. In this post, amidst our normal daily highlights, we also describe some of the gear that helps us travel light.
Day 85: Zero in Sierra City
Shutterbug picked up his new shoes in Sierra City. We have been wearing running shoes for our entire PCT hike. When your pack is light, running or trail running shoes have several advantages over traditional hiking boots: 1) running shoes are very light, often half the weight of hiking boots 2) running shoes are more breathable and less sweaty in the heat 3) running shoes dry out more quickly if you have to ford a creek, and 4) many people already own running shoes so no new purchase is necessary. We have been very happy with our running shoes on this trip, with only two blisters each in over 1200 miles.
Day 79: Echo Lake (Mile 1094.5)-Heather Lake (Mile 1102.5); 8 miles
Leaving the comforts of Echo Lake, we headed off into the Desolation Wilderness, where we walked past all sorts of lakes, big and small.
Unfortunately Shutterbug developed bad stomach issues, making frequent breaks a necessity. We weren’t sure of the cause, perhaps overeating in town. His discomfort was bad enough that we opted to stop and set up camp early. Though we hadn’t covered as many miles as we’d hoped, modifying our plan was the best thing to do.
Day 80: Heather Lake (Mile 1102.5)-Barker Creek (Mile 1125); 22.5 miles
After a good night’s sleep, Shutterbug’s stomach was feeling good enough to hike, though not perfect. We continued on and were both excited by the many beautiful lakes we passed, some teeming with fish.
Day 74: Above Latopie Lake (Mile 1013.5)-Overlooking Golden Canyon (Mile 1036.5); 23 miles
The morning’s walk was crisp and beautiful. The PCT traversed a ridge of colorful volcanic rock formations, which reminded us more of Utah than California.
The trail then descended to Highway 108 at Sonora Pass, where we were very excited to find The Owl providing trail magic. There, we eagerly consumed fresh fruit, beverages, and cookies topped with whipped cream and cherries. This is what every thru hiker dreams about!