Day 80 (July 9): PCT Mile 1,369.6 – 1,394.4

Intro. to the Cascades

Beginning Elevation = 4,900
Peak Elevation = 5,100
Ending Elevation = 4,600
Weather: Hazy sun turned overcast turned clear, high 70’s/low 80’s

Today seemed like it was a long day of walking. I think, possibly, because it was a long day of walking. It was pretty spectacular though and filled with amazing sites near and far alike!

Bolo and I were getting ready around the same time, but I left the site first. I was moving nice and quickly and didn’t take a lengthy break until I came across a junction for a “spatter cone trail.” I was intrigued and would have loved to hike the whole 2 mile loop, but instead chose to visit just the first featured “stop” to try and save time for PCT mile crushing. It was worth the short little side trip to see the small spatter tube.  Doesn’t look like much from the photo, but I think all this volcanic stuff is neat.

Not too long after this, I stopped for my breakfast break. Bolo passed by while I ate my oatmeal and coffee (still not sick of this breakfast combo).

Next on today’s site seeing tour was Subway Cave! I guess many many moons ago, lava flowed here like a river. A crust cooled on its surface, which insulated the liquid hot magma in the tube and kept it flowing until it drained out, hence the formation of a subway-like underground passage. Or at least, I think that’s what happened. This thing was so cool! I got to walk through and explore the whole thing and was geeking out for sure. I made a great video, very informative and nice cinematography as well, but for the love of Corey Matthews and Topanga Lawrence, could not get it to load. Sorry folks. Here are some photos though…

After the amazing cave experience, I once again got in mile crushing mode. The trail was pretty flat today, one of the easiest days for trail conditions that I can remember. For a big part of it, I followed along the rim of a wide valley with views of Lassen Peak behind and what I believe is Mount Shasta ahead. There were flowers too, some new and some familiar.

I had run out of water about 5 miles prior to my last source for the day, so was quite parched when I arrived. Well I suppose I thought I’d run out. Once there, I pulled out my bottle and realized I still had half a liter. I drank it down quickly, then proceeded to fill up another 4 liters to carry. The eukulele group was there with me too and were smartly eating dinner before getting on the trail to go another few miles. We’d have about 13 miles to go til our next water, so by eating dinner here they didn’t have to carry any extra for cooking.

I just wanted to go a little further past the water source, just enough to find a nice flat site and so ended up doing about another mile down trail. I had great views for dinner!

And got an absolutely gorgeous sunset.

A lovely site to view when organizing camp and hanging food up in a tree!

Later on, I was able to upload my Subway Cave tour video…

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