99. July 18: Mile 1347.72 Warner Valley Campground to Mile 1373.98 Campsite
We hiked a Marathon today! It sucked. Well, actually it was fun, but it still sucked. Or at least hurt near the end. Regardless though, the morning was pretty uneventful minus a couple of climbs early before being pretty much flat for the rest of the day. So crushing miles was of the utmost ease except for the part about our bodies not being too thrilled with the idea.
Before lunch we were approaching some southbounders and suddenly noticed a deer chasing them. We pointed behind them with our trekking poles to let them know, but all the said was, “Is is a deer? Yeah we know. It’s been following us all morning.” Apparently this doe would trot behind them and would stop when they stopped. When people would come it would walk just off the trail and wait for them to resume hiking and then get back on the trail to follow them as if it needed some friends. When we approached the deer walked off into the brush and soon after we walked off it trotted after the couple on the trail once again. It was the craziest thing!
The rest of the day was pretty mundane. We just kept pressing on. Since we know that we have to average 25 miles a day to the Canadian border to finish on time, we figured we would just go as far as we could. Throughout the afternoon, though, our bodies started giving out. We haven’t even done a full 20 mile day since early June and so my feet especially were really hurting by the end of the day. The hope was to hike to a cave 27 miles north of our campsite last night, but when Glowworm said that we had officially done a Marathon a mile from that point, we opted to just pack it in.
The first thing I did was stretch when we set our packs down. Everything ached. I normally do a series of stretches for 15 seconds each, but this time I doubled that because I hurt so much. Afterwards I just lay on the ground and let myself be still before resuming with setting up camp and preparing dinner. I felt so much better after that.