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I woke this morning around 5:30 again. It was very cold and somehow with condensation I’d become very wet. It was not great. We all got up and headed to the well. I had cooked a hot breakfast which I never do. We were, like everyone else around us, hiking the road alternate. It would be 10 miles on a road and save us 6 trail miles. Thin Mint, AB, and myself all hiked up the road. My feet hurt but shortly it was over.
I was feeling really down this morning. Like I wanted to go home for good. And like I should give up on HikerFeed. I was in a funk for sure. I talked a lot with Thin Mint and AB about it. When we arrived back at the trail there were almost 20 hikers getting dropped off in cars who’d ridden around the trail rather than the road walk. I sat and talked with Thin Mint for a while longer and then kept hiking. I started to feel a bit better. My mood picked up. Soon I was able to make a few phone calls and that cheered me up too. I realized I only had 3 weeks left as of tomorrow until I finished. I could do that.
The trail climbed up a ridge where I had a view to the south of Mt. Hood. Then it wound up and I could see Mt. Adams. Shortly it came down and north and I could see Mt. Saint Helens and it’s crooked, blown of top. The trail was thick and lush full of pine. We passed through meadows and by lots of beautiful little ponds and lakes. Some were turquoise. The ground was soft and the climbs were minimal. The air was cool and despite a thick forest a nice breeze rolled through.
Right before camp I ran into a father and son. They chatted with me and gave me a nectarine and a bag of homemade macaroons. Nice score. We camped by a beautiful lake tonight just us three. It’s cold and quiet and I’m trying to get better at adjusting to my new normal, which is ringing in my ears when it’s peaceful and quiet. I feel a lot better but I’m still ready to go home soon.