Noelle here:

Traversing through the Mission Creek area was super fun in the morning. It was hot. The creek was cool. We had to use GPS to stay on track a couple times but mostly as long as we roughly followed the creek, we were headed in the right direction. We must have crossed that creek twenty times. Most times I’d dip my hat in to keep my head cool! By late afternoon, I was ready to stop crossing it so my shoes could dry out. That was not to be! It was thankfully a warm night. We camped with a group of young people and I hoped my snoring didn’t keep them awake! 😳

Steve on Mission Creek
Steve on Mission Creek
Taking a break
Taking a break

Next day we planned to catch back up with our fellow cotton heads at Mission Creek Campground. Anywhere there are picnic tables, we congregate like bees. It wasn’t very many miles, but darned if they weren’t all uphill. What the heck is it with the PCTA?? Couldn’t a little more of this have been just a smidge flatter??

We went through a burned section which was sad and beautiful and heart wrenching, all at the same time. I felt a little awestruck, almost like being in a spiritual place, like a cathedral.

Burned forest
Burned forest
Steve in the Burned forest
Steve in the Burned forest

We got into camp in the afternoon and saw Easy Rider and Retro. We were glad to see the German couple, Gearhardt and Latvia (I may have her name wrong?). Our combined age between the six of us is probably around 365 🤣🤣🤣 so we were definitely among our peers! I’ve had this vision of getting to camp early one day and then just laying in the sun. Well that was not this day. It was hailing and raining and we all ran off to our own tents.

Hiding from the rain
Hiding from the rain

The next day was the long one. It was long for three reasons: no water for a lot of miles, the need to still get to town for resupply and the desire to successfully go the distance. Oh my word though. That last mile and a half, my dogs were barking! Whoey! Expletive. Expletive. Thankfully there were some smooth parts too!

Soft dirt trail
Soft dirt trail

And then, the last half mile…another stream we kept having to cross. I stayed dry. Right up until I didn’t. Retro too. He said he actually fell in it! Steve made it look easy though!

Maybe twenty hikers camped here, so it was one of our more crowded campsites. Interestingly, the camp was mostly split by age, with us older hikers in one section and the 20-somethings in another. It ended up being a super cold night! Easy Rider’s water bottle even froze!

Setting up camp
Setting up camp

We hiked out this morning wearing our coats and windbreakers for about a mile. Then a mostly easy ten miles into town.

Now it’s time for Indian food! Yes!!!