136. August 24: Mile 2144.10 Cascade Locks, OR to Mile 2152.73 Campsite
The final leg our journey began today. At the Bridgeside restaurant where we had breakfast we saw Nonstop and Sinatra who were both ending their hikes here. We also saw Tripod later in the day who is also ending his hike here. It’s strange to have a glimpse of what I will be feeling in only a few short weeks.
We did our last town chores after breakfast by going to the grocery and post office to send post cards and retrieve our final pair of shoes. I’m now on my fourth pair, averaging 500 miles per pair and I’ve used the same model of shoe throughout, the Altra Lone Peak. The funny thing is, is that I’m now on a third different version of the shoe since I started. I began with the Lone Peak 2.5 which I bought last summer and only had about 100-150 miles on them so I opted to begin the hike with those. Then, my next two pairs were the 3.0’s. The third pair was on sale so I continued with the 3.0’s despite the 3.5’s being out. And finally, I purchased the 3.5’s since the on sale 3.0’s were no longer available in my size. It’s also worth noting that I started with a size 11, moved to an 11.5 for my second pair, and then ordered a size 12 for my third and fourth pairs. Due to my feet spreading out and flattening as they do when you’re constantly on your feet all day, my feet grew a whole size!
After lunch at once again the Bridgeside restaurant, we finally did our best Cheryl Strayed impression by walking across the Bridge of the Gods into Washington State. This is both Glowworm and I’s first time in Washington so it was even more exciting and meaningful than just entering our final section. The bridge is all grated and fairly narrow, but people drive slowly so it’s not that sketchy. It was however, extremely windy. From the bridge you could see just how massive the Columbia River is and you could even spot people sailing off to the west.
The hike out wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be. It was all uphill, but was not all that steep minus a few sections here and there. As we walked we could see a quartet of sea planes making laps from the Columbia River Gorge, across the ridge to the south to drop water on the Indian Creek Fire which we were near before going into town, and back down to the river to retrieve more water. It was so interesting to watch that process first hand. Back at it in full tomorrow!