Wednesday August 19
Start: Stevens Pass
End: near Deception Pass
Miles: 21.6 miles
Listened to: book- Artemis Fowl: The Atlantis Complex; Artemis Fowl: The Last Guardian
After a zero day in Skykomish, I arranged for a shuttle around 8-9am this morning with a local trail angel. He took me, Rebecca, and Johnathan back to Stevens Pass, and we set out on trail at 9:45. I quickly drew ahead, hiking out my town anxiety and settling back into my hiking rhythms. I passed by a number of people heading out for short overnight hikes, since there are many nice mountain lakes in this section.
It was cooler than Monday by maybe 10 degrees which was nice, and the bugs this side of Stevens Pass are mosquitoes rather than black flies. They were a little vicious at my evening’s campsite, but otherwise, weren’t terrible.
I hiked for a solid 8 hours, just really enjoying being back on trail and moving my body in a way that felt good and right, and calming. I made it to Deception Lakes around maybe 4:30, but there were a number of people already camping, the lakes were normal lakes and not JMT-worthy, the mosquitoes were bad, and it was downhill for the next while so I kept moving. I also wanted to keep pace with Rebecca and Johnathan for the next 3 days, and I knew their plan was to do ~22-23 miles a day to Snoqualmie Pass. They won’t be zeroing, but I thought some company for the next few days could be nice.
I made it to my best guess at their campsite at 6pm, where two couples were already tenting. I joined them and enjoyed the chatting and camaraderie. They’re all going north bound; one couple started at Cascade Locks and are ending at Stevens Pass; the other couple (two queer women) are on their honeymoon and they’re hiking Snoqualmie Pass to Stevens Pass. We were later joined by a Black French NOBO thru-hiker (‘Best Buy’). It was a really lovely evening.
Another NOBO thruhiker arrived around 8, and I think I heard Rebecca and Johnathan arrive around 9. So many friendly neighbors to help keep the deer at bay!