147. September 4: Mile 2397.84 Ridge Lake to Mile 2416.28 Campsite
The slog continued today. Glowworm had a bit of a rough morning and late afternoon. I didn’t really feel all that bad today, but that’s not to say that I could have a hard day tomorrow. We’re at the point now where I think we’re just ready to be done. At least on days like today.
It was smokey all day. I’m sure the views were incredible since it was nothing but climbing up and down steep and exposed ridges, but we couldn’t see shit since the smoke was so thick from nearby forest fires. Not to mention how hard it was to breathe as the smoke hung in our lungs and the occasional flake of ash that would softly fall on our arms and heads. It just seems like every exceptionally cool thing on this trail has been somehow compromised this year by snow or fire or something. It’s hard not to feel like the Class of 2017 got royally screwed over by Mother Nature. Other thru hiking classes might have some issues with long waterless stretches in the desert or a few forest fires in northern California or southern Oregon, but not life threatening conditions in the Sierras due to snow and massive portions of the trail closed due to forest fires. Ugh. Nothing we can do about it; it’s the year we had to do this, but it still sucks.
We kept on slowly pushing all day, but the constant up and down along with the lack of motivation due to the smoke resulted in a low mileage day. Minimal campsites along the side of the final climb also motivated an earlier than hoped for end of the day. We’re 45 miles from Skykomish so we pretty much have two 22.5 mile days ahead. I have enough snacks and lunches for both of those days, but not dinners. Since that’s two full days it’ll make getting a hitch into Skykomish challenging due to us getting in at probably around 8:00 PM, but we’ll cross that hurdle when we get there I suppose.