Oregon is basically complete, it’s just a short, 50 mile hike down to cascade locks and across the bridge of the gods. This leaves the 500 miles of Washington, which is supposed to be the most beautiful section of the trail.
I feel it necessary to provide a bit of a counter point to my last post about life on the trail. It is true that this is very hard at times, but more often, the beauty so intense that it is hard to contain. I love my early-morning walks, fresh out of the tent and walking through the silent forest, the extraordinary morning light filtering through the trees; I just can’t wipe the smile off my face.
There is a goal for many on the trail called “10 x 10” which means getting in 10 miles before 10 o’clock in the morning. This has become surprisingly easy and fun for me. In the morning the miles just seem to fly by.
Also, the community of hikers that reach this far north may be the most extraordinary group of people I’ve had the pleasure to spend time with. Their drive, perseverance and ambition is truly amazing. The shared experience of hiking over 2000 miles together builds a bond that surpasses words alone. It’s great catching up with everybody at resupply stops and sometimes camping spots along the trail and sharing our stories.
The most extraordinary occurrence in all of this is my perspectives regarding my place in nature which has completely shifted. I don’t feel apart from nature or a stranger to this place, But part of nature, as much a piece of this landscape as the trees, the river the rocks or the wildlife; I feel I belong. Everything just seems to make sense and is well ordered.
Lastly I want to thank everybody for your awesome comments and sincere sense of support. With all the solitude on The trail, it’s great to have the connection with all of you out there.