A few hikers got together Friday night as we are headed to different trails…it’s fall hiking season! I’m off to the Tahoe Rim Trail, VirGo came down from Portland to start the Oregon Desert Trail, and Treehugger and Blisterfree are off to the Mogollon Rim Trail (one of Blisterfree’s creations).
My drive down from Bend yesterday was fairly uneventful, and got in after dark to find an expensive car camping spot along the lake. In the morning I went to the ranger station and picked up my permit to camp in the Desolation Wilderness, the only spot on the 165 mile trail where you need a permit. It also happens to be part of the PCT!
I decided to start at Tahoe City as there is a big parking area there, and I could resupply near the trail about half way around the lake. Tahoe City also happens to be at lake level, which meant I spent most of the day climbing up. The rim trail stays pretty far away from the lake as there are cities, and roads, and houses…it climbs the mountains around lake Tahoe.
Immediately in the parking lot I saw hikers. I knew I was on a popular thru-hike due to its short distance and spectacular scenery, but I hoped because it was late September that the big rush would be over. Regardless it will be a big change from the routes I have been hiking. I am looking forward to some trail and mindless hiking!
Immediately I started passing and being passed by another solo female hiker. When we chatted on the 2,000’ climb, it turns out last weekend she saw 140 hikers and 40 bikers! Holy #$@=£+%!
There was a wind advisory today, and when I got up over 8,000’ it was cold. I put on all my layers to have a snack. Brrrr. I was also carrying a lot of water as the trail can have long dry stretches, but it turns out I lugged all the water for nothing cause a few seasonal creeks had water. Seems to me they need a databook and water chart for this trail!
My Achilles on both feet had been feeling pinched, which had me a bit worried this soon in the hike. My trusty Oboz were hurting. I spent most of the summer in my Luna Sandals…. a barefoot sandal…so I decided to try those out even though I had a heavy pack (I have a bear canister on this hike…ugg).
Immediately my feet felt better. I need to be careful where I step as there is only about a ¼ inch of footbed, but for the next 5 miles I cruised with no pain. I guess my feet have gotten stronger!
I was back on the PCT at a windy saddle, and enjoyed cruising down in the quiet forest. Quiet that is, except for the howling wind.
Early evening I started to look for a camp spot away from any trees that might fall in the heavy wind, and happened upon the most amazing spot ever about 2,000’ above the lake, I could see heavy dark clouds swirling above Lake Tahoe a few miles away, and the mountains protected me just enough from the wind. Bliss!!!