I’ll Be Here in the Trees
Beginning Elevation = 3,350
Ending Elevation = 4,150
Elevation Range = 3,250 – 4,550
Weather:. Cloudy, bit of light rain, high 65°F
The Snickers and Stevie Wonder team was on the trail at 5:30am. This is day 2 that Snickers has been without his headlamp. He believes it’s gone, must have snuck out of his pack at some point very unfortunately. Thus, he packed up using the light from his phone and then during our first fifteen minutes he followed behind me as we hiked. I put mine on its brightest settings, 250 of the brightest lumens you’ve ever seen. It was especially dark this morning since it was cloudy and we were covered by a tree canopy, but even so, by 5:45am we could see enough without the light.
We had a gruelling climb right out of camp. A bit along, we observed that the foliage adjacent to the trail was quite wet, an interesting occurrence since our tents stayed dry overnight even down by the river.
Around 6:45am, we came across the Trojan Warhorse as he was just finishing packing up. He’d set up near some power lines along with a Dutch couple and apparently they got rained on, hence the wet foliage we noticed earlier. Together, the three of us hiked onward until we stopped for a shorter breakfast stop.
The motivation wasn’t really there for the squad today apart from Snickers, he seemed like he had some energy left in the tank. Here he is running through an amazing gate that I think was near a roadway. It reminded us of the giant wooden gate of Jurassic Park!
This was a random coincidence because the movie was a topic of conversation at our breakfast stop just prior. I had little candy dino eggs in my brown sugar flavored oatmeal, which spectacularly melted away to reveal even smaller candy Dino’s inside! That led me to ask the question if TW and Snickers thought some day we’d have the technology to bring dinosaurs back? The convo spiraled from there. Anyway, gives you insight into what sometimes gets talked about whilst hiking all day, day after day.
After breakfast we all kind of split and did our our hiking for the most part. The trail skirted around the large Timothy Lake, which was nice. It had some wind blowing across, which gave it a bit of a rugged, chopy look…
Crater Creek flowed into the lake, which we crossed on this cool foot bridge!
We saw many weekend campers along the lake and several hiking through this next stretch of trail. It was a truly beautiful forest and there were some side trails that may have looped around the lake or smaller lakes. One such trail, was a short distance to Little Crater Lake that was supposed to be a very clear, 44 feet deep pristine pond that had a viewing platform. I was excited to see it. The only problem was that I missed the turnoff! Silly Stephen.
The walking remained nice and easy for the first half of the day. We had a climb up to a roadside though and hoped to take lunch soon after. It was also lightly raining at this point. At the road crossing however, we were stopped by a pleasant site…more trail magic folks!
Madd Baker was the guys name and told us that he’s retired and loves nothing better than coming out here to bring food and drinks to the hikers. He was a super nice guy and we were happy to hang with him and take part in his delicious gifts! For the love of Lyza, Dr. pepper!, are you serious!?
After a while, we decided we’d better keep er moving and said thanks and farewell. Before we left the road, however, we saw an ominous warning! Dun dun dun.
As I mentioned before, we’d originally planned to have lunch soon after the road, but none of us were really hungry after snacking on pasta salad, clementines, rice krispie treats, pretzels filled with peanut butter, etc… We did still need water though, which unfortunately, when we got to the spring where we’d hope to fill up, all we found was a muddy puddle. Goo! My bottles were pretty low, only having half a liter left or 500 ml or so. There didn’t seem to be a source on trail before or at our intended camp site either. I filled up another half liter of dirty water from the puddle to have as an emergency, then we kept going, thinking we may have to hike further to get water for the night.
Got some views while going up…
Crossed a busy highway (Highway 26?)
Soon after this we stopped to have a team chat. TW was feeling that he was overdoing it and didn’t want to go too much further. I agreed, but needed water. The other guys seemed to have enough. Eventually, I found a little detour off the trail that passed by Lower and Upper Twin Lakes before rejoining the PCT again. So, at the trail junction, I went to go see the lakes while they went straight towards camp. It ended up working out nicely. I skipped about a 2 mile section of the PCT, and my alternate route was maybe 2.5-3ish miles.
Here’s Upper Twin Lake, where I filled up my water bottles…
I hiked in to camp around 6:15pm, while the others were eating. I set up my tent and joined. TW was packing up, and laying his stuff out to try and dry. We had two other hikers at our camp too. I forgot their names, but they were headed south. We even had a picnic table for us all to gather and eat at. A nice quick dinner and then a pretty early trip into our tents.