Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Day 32: June 25, 2012

June 25, 2012.

Day: 32    Daily Miles: 48   Total Miles: 1396.25   Hours Hiking: 16   6:25am-11:30pm

Listen to the audio journal above or Download June 25th Audio File Here

Day 32

Passing through Drakesbad, note the steam!
June 25, Day 32. I hiked on the Hat Creek Rim and camped about 1.5-2 miles before Forest Service road #22, where the water cache is up on top of the Hat Creek Rim. I did 48 miles on the nose, stopping at mile 1396.25 at point 0633570 E 4520564 N. Yesterday... Lets see here. It started off pretty good. I got up and left at about 6:30am after having I think my best night of sleep on the entire trail. I slept on a nice carpet of pine needles and just slept soundly through the night. I stopped somewhere around 11:15-30pm. I made a quick Mac 'N Cheese dinner and proceeded to pass out, which was good. I woke up, felt energized and charged up and started off the day pretty well. I headed into Lassen National Park, a little bit of climbing at the beginning and then, I actually hit Drakesbad sooner than I thought I would. It was about 2 miles from the actual border of the national park. So I plowed on through, passed the boiling lake, hit Drakesbad and wish I could have stopped and gone swimming in their hot pool. Right before I went up the climb out of the Drakesbad valley, I met a couple who were camping out for the week from Chico, who had signed my witness log and they had seen 19 people go by in the last three days, all thru-hikers I believe, or at least they assumed such. Got talking, they were really nice. I headed up and out. Kind of powered along up through the creeks and passed someone in a tarptent still sleeping at about 8am or so. Yeah, I kept going. When I finally made it to the little pass, which I remembered at least because it was up around where I had camped one night in 2009 before I made it down to the Heitmans and met up with LINT again. I had totally forgotten about the very long and relatively 
Mt. Lassen seen through burned trees, in the National Park.
flat segment between the place where I camped {in 2009} and the kind of pined forest you wander about in sandiness before you reach the Heitmans {Old Station}. It wasn't bad, really flat, really fast and easy. Just really monotonous. I just kept trucking. Good filtered views of Mt. Lassen through was was basically a burned area, which is kind of interesting. You have these tall skeleton trees that are all burned out, with this snow capped mountain peeking, kind of filtered through behind them. But, yeah. Flat, easy a nice walk passed two pretty lakes. It was windy. Eventually got to the downhill part and I started listening to the lecture series I have - an actual {podcast lecture} class on astronomy of our local solar system, which is interesting. About 30 minutes episodes/lectures from the University of Ohio in Columbus. Learning cool things like the word 'orient' actually in Latin means east, so the 'orient' as referring to Asia, was to the east of Europe, and therefore when you 'orient' a map it technically means you put the east to the top where north normally is. And cool things like, that we think of time as seconds...time as an hour with 60 minutes in the hour and 60 seconds in the minute and we think that degrees of lat/long are determined, or came from time, but it's actually the other way around. Time took the names from degrees and such. They first were measuring angles and then wanted to figure out and measure time. The reason it's called a minute is because it is a 'mi-nute' portion of a degree and the reason it's a second is because it is the 'second mi-nute' portion of a degree. And thats why have our names for time - minute and second, from Latin basically, which is really cool. It's just the origins of words and how they evolved and how we use them. So yeah, I was listening to those through the wooded area, the sandy pits, passed the turn off to the Old Station store. I kept going and I had gotten a call earlier, oh I don't know a day or two earlier from my aunt and uncle, that they were 
Mt Lassen in the clouds from the Hat Creek overlook.
hoping to meet me at the Highway 44 crossing by Subway cave. So, I was hoping they would be there and I reached the crossing at about 5:30pm and low and behold, there they were sitting. They said that they had just gotten there. I guess I had told my parents a rough estimation of when I'd be in Old Station and they judged accordingly and were there. I convinced them, they had a bunch of food for me, like dinner, and I convinced them to meet me up at the Hat Creek Overlook so I wouldn't have to lug a stomach full of food up the hill. So they agreed and I met them up top in about 40 minutes. At the overlook/rest area where a bunch of hikers were actually hanging out. When they got up there I guess there were three of them waiting around, and they started talking to them and told them who I was and what I was doing, so they wanted to stick around and meet me. Which is cool, because I shared all the food and gave them some good trail magic, even though they had just resupplied and were full and had lots of food, they still managed to east some more. It was awesome to finally talk with some people for a little while. So, I ate my fill, which was awesome - fried chicken, and fruit salad, my aunt Marty went overboard, but that was great because there were other people. And, I stuffed myself. By the time I was ready to leave, two more people showed up. Tic-Tok, or Tok I guess from 2009 actually, remembered me and had taken my picture and was happy to meet me again, and there was someone named James who had head of what I was attempting, as well as....I forget their names, I'm sorry....of another guy who had heard of me from the PCT-L. But um, I finally left at about 7:20pm. I still needed to do a good 10 miles to make my rough mileage for the day and actually left just after Chimichanga did, and he was hiking pretty fast trying to catch up to some friends. So we hiked into the night, all
Sunset into the rain clouds.
the while a front was building to the west and was basically killed the sun about an hour early and proceeded to cloud over us. At about 10-10:30 it rained. We were still hiking, we hiked until 11-something-or-other, but it rained, it was cold. We were on the Hat Creek Rim where it should be 100 degrees, hot and terrible and then it was like 45 degrees, windy and wet. So a compete 180 from what the normal was. We hiked for a while, the rain kind of stopped, but by that time all the grasses were wet so our feet were soaked and we were kind of just...not miserable, not quite angry, but just disappointed that there was rain. We don't like rain. Rain sucks. So, we hiked until about 11:30pm because I was like 'I know there are trees, we just have to keep going until we find them, there will be good, much better in the trees rather than in the open land with a few bushes'. We finally reached some trees and low and behold it was fairly was actually dry ground under the trees. It didn't rain super heavy, but enough to make things pretty wet. So we parked it as soon as we could. It proceeded to again, rain a bit more as we were setting up camp, so we kind of... I half-assed set up my tarp, I tied it to a couple low branches of the tree and made sort of leanto right next to the trunk and went to sleep. But basically through the night, or at least at 3:30am when I woke up and looked at the sky, it was all stars out. So I took my tarp down because it was creating some condensation on me and slept open for the rest of the night which was perfectly fine. So that was interesting. I guess there is supposed to be another trough, hopefully a small one, coming through in about a week or less. So hopefully that peters out and doesn't produce much precipitation because I don't want to hike in rain. I don't like rain. Rain sucks for hiking and it should not be in California at this date. So tomorrow I pick up my resupply at Burney Falls State Park, which is just under a 30 mile day. I'll almost be on schedule. I'm still probably about 20-25-30 miles behind my 60 day schedule, but I hope to make that up pretty soon. I just have to dry my stuff out a little bit and keep rockin'. I hope that Chimichanga keeps up with me because it's really nice to have someone to talk to for a change. I mean it's been 32 days and the most I've hiked with another person has been about 4 hours, and that was with Dan coming out of Cajon Pass at the big climb. So it has been nice having some conversation and just basically just being able to talk. I don't talk to myself, so it's all mostly internal thoughts and listening to audio books and briefly talking on the phone or talking to people for like 5 minutes as I meet them on trail. So we've had some good conversations and just general banter, which is really appreciated. So I'm hoping we get to hike together tomorrow and I'll be a good day.
Hat Creek Rim filled with morning fog - view from where we camped on day 32.