As far as nearing the end of this epic adventure goes, I’m doing pretty good.
Even with waking up to a frozen tent.
I’ve heard about other hikers waking up to frost and ice, but I hadn’t realised what that meant exactly. I guess I just hadn’t given it too much thought. Not until this morning.
When I woke up, there were pretty shimmery sparkles on the inside of my tent’s rain fly. I didn’t quite understand what they were in my sleepy stupor. Not until I touched them, and the whole thing was like a sheet of glass.
I managed to unzip the door, and after my morning routine (find a good tree to dig a hole behind, cook up some hot oats, savour my strong mocha, pretend I don’t need to stretch), it was time to brave my fear of handling that ice block of a tent and pack it away.
The best way to approach this, I found, was by unhooking all clips, lifting the stiff tent straight up like a shell, and shaking it ‘till those ice sheets broke up and scattered all over the place, leaving me with freezing hands and a heavy, wet tent.
I’m glad the cold didn’t last all day.
Of course, it was still fairly cold, but the sun shone strong enough to dry everything out at lunch time.
The dry tent was a blessing.
And it wasn’t the only thing I was thankful to the sun for:
It’s a rather unexciting, less than remarkable name for such a significant place: the last lake for my 2018 Pacific Crest Trail adventure.
I’ve jumped in some pretty cool lakes.
Lakes were I came out with bits of grass and hoop stuck to me.
Lakes where my bones hurt afterward from the frigid temperatures, but my muscles thanked me for the ice bath.
Lakes that I raced friends across and back.
Lakes that I floated in, for hours.
This one seemed perfect for my last.
It’s absolutely picturesque: bordered by forest and jutting cliff, lit up by a cloudless sky, a mirror of blue-green water that gives it it’s mediocre name. One of the most beautiful I’ve come across, so far. Granted, that could also be my nostalgia typing.
My girl 2Beers was the only other human to grace this place with me. Nemo was pretty far behind (we bargained), so I stripped off for one last nudey swim.
My toes stung in the cold water as I stood there making sure 2Beers could get a good picture of the moment.
My heart soared as I lifted my arms in freedom and celebration of all the lakes I have jumped in, and all the miles I have walked to get here.
Here’s to me!
Here’s to all of you who’ve encouraged me, supported me, prayed for me, helped me get this far!
Here’s to embracing these last days, and striding in shoulders back, head held high to whatever comes next.