September 6, 2015
Hwy 12 – White Pass (2303.0) to Snow Lake (2313.0)
10.0 PCT miles today
2347.6 miles total
Today’s Elevation Gain/Loss: + 1,409 ft, – 932 ft
Morning neroes are the best. It brings so much relief to know that you only have to get in about 10 miles in a day, and you’re left with the whole morning to sleep in, eat, pack up, and relax. Today was especially enjoyable because of the huge crowd of hikers that were all gathered in the store/restaurant at White Pass. Hikers kept rolling in throughout the morning, wet, cold, and exhausted, and the rest of us greeted them with applause, conversation and hot food. After lunch, when we finally left to get back on trail, we made the rounds saying goodbye to our friends and giving each other one more pat on the back for a job well done through Goat Rocks. We were all feeling especially celebratory about the trail being open all the way Canada, and today more than ever before, it feels like we’re truly in the home stretch.
This morning was warm and cozy just like we wanted. We took our time eating through two boxes of Frosted Mini Wheats and then rationing out our food and packing our bags. We needed to be out of our room by noon, and we made it with only one minute to spare. With everything piled into Mama Bear’s car and our nice dry bags sitting on our laps, we drove the 500 feet down to the store and restaurant which makes up the only business in town.
There were already 6 or so hikers hanging out at the store when we arrived, but as I mentioned, more rolled in by the minute. By the time we left, the room must have been filled with over 20 of us, and I’m sure it didn’t smell great to any outside customers. Mama Bear, Pickles and I made the best decision of the day when we ordered a pizza off the very limited and highly deep-fried menu and were brought out a huge, delicious pie that successfully fed us all. We loitered for as long as possible in the store, eating every last bite of our pizza and swapping snow and rain stories with other hikers, but eventually we knew we had to be going.
Getting back on trail was made a little mentally challenging by the continuation of grey skies and the off and on sprinkling rain. Fortunately the terrain was easy and less muddy than we expected, and we completed these 10 miles with energy to spare. Tonight we are camped at Snow Lake and the fog has rolled in thick. It isn’t quite raining, but if we leave our tent we come back in wet from being out in a cloud. The cold and wet is getting old, but at least all our gear is dry and we’re warmer right now than we’ve been in about a week. The weather reports are saying sunshine is on the way so we’ll hang in there a little longer and look forward to warmer, drier days in the near future.