I'm not really sure where I camped for the night. I took a guess that I had hiked about 25 miles. I had a hard time finding a campsite at the end. It was getting on toward 8pm so I took the first thing I could find. It was almost level. I could make it work. The mosquitoes were terrible there.
My mom and Lowell drove me up to Quincy-La Porte Road and I began hiking around 10:30 in the morning. The trail went mostly down until I met the Middle Fork of the Feather River around 3pm. There were 50 fallen trees along the way. Someone was camped at the river. I stopped there for something to eat and to fill my water.
I bumped into the remainders of the Donner Party. Only two remain. One was the woman I shared a room with in Lone Pine at the hostel. I couldn't remember her name. They both looked very tired.
I met some section hikers. One was a woman hiking with two young guys. She was friends with Rockstar. One was Trekker, a man from the PCT list. Trekker said I looked too clean to be a thru-hiker. How insulting! I'm not a thru-hiker, certainly, but give me a day and I'll be just as dirty as one. Trekker is part of the reason I had a hard time finding a campsite. I passed one level spot and thought, since Trekker was behind me then, that he would need it more than I. After that spot there was nothing for a very long climb. I hoped Trekker took that spot.
I saw something blue and squiggly run away from me. A skink? I saw a baby faun. It was only about 18 inches high at the shoulder and had strangely stubby little legs. It made a lot of noise as it hopped stuntedly away from me. I had startled it from under a log. I watched it go for quite a long time.
At times the forest was so thick, with warm still air and a thick carpet under my feet, it felt almost like going indoors to walk for a spell. The forest was lush and green and dark like I remembered it from when I left the trail at the end of Section O last year in Dunsmuir.
I played my pennywhistle after the sun set and heard birds chirping around me. So I stopped to listen to them instead. It was warm all night. I realized I did not need to carry around all the warm layers I had used in Yosemite in the snow and cold anymore. I planned to send all that stuff ahead.
I could hear snoring by the wee hours of morning. I thought it was Trekker, but it turned out to be two trees rubbing together.
A ribbon of bright orange on the horizon was beautiful through the trees. It was time to get up, go find water and have breakfast.