Thursday, July 12, 2012

For Pete's Sake!!

I just went on my second ever backpacking trip!  Ryan is currently on a week long volunteer trip with the Washington Trails Association to help maintain a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail in the back of beyond near Roslyn, WA. I went out with him to do an overnight hike to Pete Lake the day before he was set to meet up with the trail crew. I have posted about Roslyn, WA in the past. There is tons of great hiking around there and it was great to get back out to the Alpine Lakes Wilderness again. I got to plant 5 letterboxes (and found one).
It was a 4 mile hike out to Pete Lake. I insisted in bringing a tent because all reports said that there were mosquitoes at the lake and on the trail. Well, Ryan made me carry the tent. But my pack was still about 10 pounds lighter than his because he was packed for a whole week on the trail and I was only going for an overnight.
I actually forded a river! I took off my socks and replaced my shoes to walk across the Cooper River. It only came up to about mid shin, but boy was that water COLD! So glad I had dry socks to put back on when I got to the other side!! Here you can also see the remains of snow still on the trail. And here is a shot of Ryan going across the river carrying his shoes.
Once we got out to the lake, we found it was over run with boy scouts. Not really the back country peace that we were hoping for, but we continued a few more yards around the lake and found a nice secluded site for our tent.

Unfortunately, when we opened up the tent and started to put it up, we found out that the tent poles were shot, the elastic inside the poles was totally rotted and we could not put up the tent! I had carried it for 4 miles for nothing! Boy was I upset!! I had to start drinking my wine early. Luckily there was a nice breeze that kept away most of the mosquitoes and by the time it got dark it had cooled down enough that they were not a problem. A flock of bright yellow Evening Grosbeaks kept us company flittering around our campsite. We also had a little fire for a bit after sundown to amuse ourselves and with the smoke to keep the bugs at bay. We had fantastic views of the stars and fell asleep stargazing with no tent or tarp or anything to restrict our view. I even saw a meteor!
The next morning, we hiked out. Me to go back to work and Ryan to meet up with the rest of the WTA volunteers and to get started on fixing that trail. Ryan won't be back home again until after the weekend. And was I glad to have a Jacuzzi Tub to come home to!
Don't forget that Washington Trails Association needs our help to keep the trails in Washington State maintained and protected. We will be racking up the mileage in August for the Hike-a-thon. Follow that link to donate to our cause. :-) And check back here to Amanda from Seattle Dot Com for updates on our hikes and mileage in August. I want to thank Krista, Moira, Diane and John, Jennifer and Ann for already donating via the website! We have already collected $185 for Washington Trails.

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