Miles 947.9 – 974.6 >>> 26.7 (43.0 km)
We woke up a little late today and weren’t on the trail until a quarter to seven. My guess is that our bodies are realising that the days are getting shorter. According to my sun position app was sunrise at 6:27 am today.
We still felt good about ourselves, because So Good and Troubadour took even longer than us to get going. Troubadour was soon past us, but So Good didn’t catch up with us until later.
As it has been for much of Oregon, the smoke in the air was hard on the lungs, but amazing for sunrises and sets. The formations of the smoke clouds and the colours of the sky were always a sight to behold.
By about eight, I stopped on a rocky slope (somewhere between Siskiyou Gap and Big Red Mountain) for a quick food break. Because of the nature of the terrain, I could see Trouble from a long way away and waited for her to catch up. The scenery in that area was gorgeous and it was a joy to just sit and take in the scenery. Shortly after, So Good caught up with us as well, and we invited her to join us on our little rock.
When we left, the two girls decided to hike together for a while. I decided to storm ahead though and see what the last few miles of Oregon had to offer.
Well, the last few miles were beautiful. Even though I was looking forward to entering California, I was also sad to leave Oregon behind. This state has been nothing but spectacular. The trails were beautifully maintained. The scenery breathtaking and varied. The people super friendly. What more could you want?
Trouble and I had always wondered why we’d come across so many trail journals that claimed that Oregon was boring …
No, Oregon was nothing of the sort.
The trail wound its way slowly back up to 7,000 feet (2,100 m) of elevation. and the scenery seemed to change every mile or so.
I stopped to wait for Trouble, when I reached the Stateline Trailhead. It’s only three tenths of a mile before the border. Some trail workers had carved some furniture out of tree trunks with a chainsaw. Naturally I thought that we should have some pictures for the occasion.
When we came across the border sign, Trouble insisted to carry me, which was great fun. Don’t think I’ve laughed this heartily in a long time.
Only a mile south of the border, we came across the Donomore Cabin. It’s slowly being rebuilt by the Offenbacher family and is open to hikers. Here we found the Strawbridge family again (https://www.trek2650.com/), having a lunch break. We stopped for a little chat, but were soon back on the trail.
California welcomed us with some pretty nice scenery. We were walking through some gently rolling hills for most of the remaining day.
Near Mud Spring, we came across one of those wonderful places that give new meaning to the word outhouse. Especially because it was clearly visible from the trail.
We enjoyed the last few miles of the day, even though it was getting quite chilly and the wind had picked up too.
As the sun was setting, we began looking around for somewhere to stay the night. We were walking along a ridgeline up towards White Mountain and there just wasn’t a place anywhere. And it was seven already.
Eventually though, we found a place, on a small plateau about a three quarter mile east of White Mountain. It was very windy and we found shelter under a small shrub, but had to clear some debris first.
We decided to cowboy camp and to wrap Trouble’s hammock tarp around us as a wind barrier.
It worked like a treat … until we woke up in the middle of the night with wet sleeping bags from condensation. We unwrapped ourselves and went back to sleep. It was incredible how cold the nights now were. It was still August and we were in California, right?