Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Day 31: June 24, 2012 - PCT Midpoint!

June 24, 2012.

Day: 31    Daily Miles: 47.25   Total Miles: 1348.25   Hours Hiking: 16   7:25am-11:25pm

Listen to the audio journal above or Download June 24th Audio File Here

Day 31

Midpoint Record Recording
June 24th, 4pm and 45 seconds 2012. I crossed and touched the midpoint of the Pacific Crest Trail at 1,325 miles, for a time of 30 days, 9 hours, 55 minutes and 45 seconds. I left at 6:05 am on May 25, 2012. The only known northbound record to the midpoint that I have seen comes from the 2009 speed record going northbound with Adam Bradley and Scott Williamson, and that was 34 days, 18 hours, 47 minutes and 2 seconds. So at this point, I should have a new record and I have beaten their record by ohh, a good 4 days. So hopefully I can keep this up. I'm soooo happy to be here, wooo hoo!

Success, new PCT halfway record! 30d9h56m
June 24, Day 31. I made it 47.25 miles to trail mile 1348.25. About 1.5-2 miles before the Lassen Volcanic National Park boundary. The coordinates for that point is 0638337 E 4472404 N. I stopped at about, ohh I believe 11:30pm or so. It was kind of a slow day. I got up and got moving right around 7:30am, so it wasn't by any means a fast, quick start. I took a good half hour or so at the halfway point because I actually had cell service, so. It took me a long time to make the miles, which I was OK with. It wasn't too bad a night, much better night hiking experience than the previous night coming up from Belden. I started off and had to climb for about,... actually I started off with frost on me in the morning. The sun came up just enough that I put my sleeping bad on some bushes and dried it off, and similarly with ground tarp which was covered in condensation on the bottom. I got them pretty dry and took off. I had about 2.5 miles more of up, but at least this wasn't the staccato rubble pile of kind of level and then straight up, then kind of level and then straight up. It was more of a switchback, constant gradient. This was very welcome. I finally hit the ridge and could see Lassen pretty well and came down off Frog Mountain over across a couple snow patches and into the land of just ups and downs, ups and downs across volcanic ridges and around....up and around and down and through the trees 
Mt Lassen on the way to the midpoint.
basically. You occasionally get sights of Lassen kind of poking through basically just to the north of you, north-northwest actually. You just kind of weave around the valleys trying to stick to ridges. So you know you might be hiking for 2 hours and all of a sudden you're like, look there's the trail across the valley from where I'm at right now....well that was 5 miles, ya know, just to get here from there. But, it wasn't bad. It was fairly easy, I kind lulled in the morning. I didn't wake up for along while and the afternoon, or up until the afternoon or noon, I was just kind of dragging ass. I had to do some foot maintenance, my big toenail was digging into my flesh, so trimmed all those, which fixed the problem instantly pretty much {in two days it would become infected and last until I got off trail...}. And then, I just kept chugging along. I knew that the midpoint was approaching and I hadn't really looked to see exactly where it was. Depending on who's mileage you go by, it could be various different points, but it was at 1325, or 1326 actually, shoot. It says 1325 on it, but on the Halfmile mileage, it's at 1326.5 I believe. Anyways, I got close to the halfway point and was getting hungry and it was uphill, so I stopped and took a break. And then, i realized that, 'shit I should get there sooner than 
Mt Lassen between volcanic boulders.
later, and then take my break there'. So I get up from my awesome view of Lassen - I'm pretty much directly east of it at this point, or what seems to be due east...I'm not sure exactly what direction I was looking actually *laughs*. And then I trucked it for the next mile and a half and get there at 4pm on the nose, which translate to actually being a little bit earlier than a full on hour, because I started at 6:05am on the 25th of May. I made... basically I hit the midpoint at 30 days, 9 hours and 55 minutes and 45 seconds. So, basically that slaughters the other old northbound record that I know of, or at least that has been recorded, which is awesome news. I actually tuned on my phone to take a couple pictures of myself so I could send them out later and I had full service and continued to have full service for a long time, probably a good 12 miles or so. So I was texting people and calling people and trying to get a hold of folks just to check in because I had good service and a full charge from Belden. From the midpoint, it's downhill for a good 8-9 miles to Highway 36, and then it's flat for another 3 miles and then it's a fairly easy easy up and then another down to the North Fork of the Feather River/headwater area. And then kind of a gentle up again. But, by the time I was heading down towards the North Fork, it was dark and I was using my light. So I didn't really get to see a lot, but I got to see all of this in 2009 and remembered about it and just kept chugging a long. My goal was to get to the national park boundary, but I found a great campsite beforehand and the map kind of showed 
not so great contours for sleeping so, i took it a little early and knew I could make it up tomorrow morning. I had a wonderful sleep. I don't know. It's probably been one of the best on trail sleeps I've had. It was on a bed of pine needles, there was kind of a little divot for my butt, so my back was kind of in a nice shape and this morning I woke up at about 5:40 and I was like ' ohh this is soo comfortable and warm, I do not want to get up', so it took me about 10 minutes to rouse myself. All through yesterday I listened to the 'I Robot' audio book. Completed it actually and lets just say the movie is nothing like the book. The movie is kind of like one of the mini..the little stories extrapolated and twisted from the books many, like 7 stories or so. So it's, it was interesting. I didn't know what to expect and now I know. So, I should hit the Hat Creek Rim this evening {'tomorrow'}, which will be awesome because today was actually more or less cold and breezy. A lot of the day was about 50 degrees and you're in the shade of the trees and it's breezy, like I had to actually put my jacket on, and left it on for most of the day, even though it was sunny. The sun was warm, but you weren't really ever in it for a long time. So tomorrow, the weather is supposed to get a little bit warmer, but not hot yet and keep clear, so the Hat Creek Rim will be awesome and great, instead of being sweltering hot and blistering everything. So I look forward to it. I'm getting close to Burney Falls and my next mail drop.
Day 32 Panorama - Hat Creek Rim near overlook in the evening. It will rain in a few hours :(