Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hiking a local trail and having memories of the PCT

Today I hiked the Tequepis Trail in the rain.

If anyone read my trail journal of my PCT hike, they know from my travails in Washington how much I do not like hiking in the rain. Today it was not so bad.

I was smart enough to bring a rain jacket, something I didn't have in Washington. I wore that but kept it zipped open so I wouldn't overheat inside. I also stripped down my zip-off pants to shorts so my pant legs would not get went, which would be colder than having wet skin that can dry more easily.

I also wore Chaco sandals on the hike today. Strangely, my socks were drier hiking in sandals in the rain than they normally are hiking in shoes on a dry day. My legs stayed dry, too, since there was no brush on the trail to get them wet. I guess my nice, plump body serves as a good umbrella for my legs.

I got a little bit of a chill on the way down, finding it harder to stay warm with the reduced effort of descending. It reminded me a lot of hiking in Washington. There was a section near Snoqualmie Pass where I was very cold hiking in the rain and I worried if I stopped I might get hypothermia. I relied on my gloves a lot that day to keep me warm. I miss those gloves. I lost them on the trail in Washington near Glacier Peak. I keep forgetting that I no longer have them.

There is a camp at the bottom of the Tequepis Trail. It's the sort of place that people can hire for retreats or for summer camps for children. There was a group having a retreat there today. I found myself slipping into my old PCT thoughts. I kept thinking that maybe when we got there they would invite us for lunch or offer us some hot chocolate. Then I would have to remind myself I'm not in the PCT world anymore.

Later today, on a completely unrelated topic, I found a link to a web site about bears. Lots of people ask me if I was afraid of large animals while hiking the PCT. I was not afraid. I think this web site is a great resource to help dispel myths about bears. Check it out: Learn about bears.

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