Tuesday, August 18, 2015, Mile 2390: Snoqualmie Pass Zero

At Snoqualmie Pass, Mile 2390

I slept in until 9 AM, and woke up more refreshed than I had in days. We lazed around, and then went back to the Pancake House, where I ate another enormous breakfast. This is all very good.

I had a lot of little things to finish up, including taking care of the shoes, which was very frustrating. And I had a last bit of laundry to do, which unfortunately involved a fluky washer. Sigh. Some parts of hiking are just plain dull.

We spent some more time this afternoon over at Aardvark’s. It really is the main gathering place. I met Camel, from Germany, Willow, and a handful of other hikers. They were talking about some of the people that I knew. Fuzzy Star had just finished!

Steve and Patrick had to take off in the late afternoon, and that was much harder than I had anticipated. So I reminded myself that this is the chance to Do This Thing, and I need to seize it with both hands. I should see at least one of them next week at the Dinsmores’.

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I love these guys!

After they left, I took all my extras from the resupply, and dumped them into the Aardvark’s hiker box. And I watched people’s eyes bug out. I love doing that! Patriot, a young guy from Louisiana, had a positively glazed look in his eyes. There were a few homemade breakfasts, dinners, and desserts. These are extras based on my anticipated 5-6 day hike through Section J, and they disappeared almost instantly.

Dinner was random munchies from the convenience store: unimpressive, but with some treats. Now it’s time to put some finishing touches on my pack before bed, so that I can leave right after breakfast. I am incredibly grateful for my family.

Thursday, July 30, 2015, Mile 2292: White Pass Zero

At White Pass, Mile 2292

Got up this morning, and it was pretty clear that my leg wasn’t better. I went down to the store, had a heaping plate of biscuits and gravy, and decided to take a zero. A zero is when you stay two nights in one place, and have zero miles on the middle day. It gave me more time to organize my resupply, and to rest my leg. So after breakfast I went back up the (steep) stairs to the motel, and paid for another night.

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Hanging out in front of the Kracker Barrel, with Caesar, Eastbound, and Fluffy Star. Photo credit: Teri Stalcup (Peanut).

I planned on hanging out at the store, and spending time napping and icing. I met Fluffy Star (aka Kathrin Schulte), a girl from Germany (who likes fluffy things, and stars). And I met Peanut (aka Teri Stalcup), and Goat.

After lunch, I bought another bag of ice and headed back to the motel room. A few hours of reading, napping, and icing later, I gave it up and had another enormous sub sandwich for dinner.

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Relaxing and putting the feet up

While I was down there, a woman named Peter Pan (aka Denise Lane) arrived. There were no more hotel rooms, as there was a large high school cross country camp going on. I offered to share mine, and so we got her situated. A couple of the guys wanted to share as well, but that was not where I needed to go.

I called Steve from the motel room, and said I thought I needed to see a doctor, but that I’d decide in the morning. A bit later, Denise (who is an acupuncturist from Oregon) was looking at my leg, and saying “Oh, that’s not good.” It was getting more red, hot and swollen by the hour, and I finally called Steve and said I needed to go to the doctor first thing on Friday 7/31.

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Nasty medical-type picture. This was the shot we shared with the doc.

So his plan was to arrive by nine, and we’d head into Yakima. I packed up my stuff, carefully so that everything was in its place, and not haphazardly like I didn’t care anymore. Because I do care, and I need to have hope.