6/20/17 16.6 miles PCT Mile 1212.0
We slept behind the church in Sierra City. It was free, and this means I woke up to a yappy dog barking at 3am, 4am and so on. Finally around 7am we woke up and packed our things up. There was a rumor the cafe down the street would be open at 8am for breakfast, but I knew it wasn’t true. This town is very quiet and almost everything is closed and only opens on the weekends. So I ate my granola and walked down to the main road for a hitch. There isn’t a lot of traffic coming but we decided to wait for 20mins before waking the 1.5miles up the windy hill to the trail. Luckily a local woman showed up to mail a letter and gave us a ride to the trail. As soon as we started we were climbing up and up toward the Sierra Buttes. They were rocky and the trail winded up and around them for the first 6 miles. It was also starting to get really warm out. After a mile or two we passed Bucket and Biline who were getting water at a spring. They were not so lucky with the hitching and had to road walk back to the trail. They joked that they needed a blow up lady doll so that they could get hitches easier. We decided this would not help them at all as they would seem a bit unstable carrying around a blow up doll for two guys.
After 6 miles the trail crested and we rounded a corner to see more snow it wasn’t much and we were hot so it actually felt good to be back in the woods and walking on cold snow. After a mile of so of patchy snow we ended up on the backside of the Sierra Buttes with nice views of some lakes and the rocky hills. We saw a few day hikers and when we passsd a large family having lunch they handed us smoked salmon and cream cheese crackers. We graciously accepted and kept on hiking.
We also passed the 1200 mile mark but we are only 850 miles in so it wasn’t cause for celebration.
We passed Bucket and Biline again and then braked for lunch soon after. Before lunch we encountered more snow going up a side hill which required us to do some creative tree weaving. Biline soon joined us for lunch but Bucket was nowhere to be seen. We rested and ate food for about 45mins before setting out for more annoying snow travel through the woods. I began to get concerned about Bucket because he doesn’t have any apps on his with GPS finding capabilities.
It was starting to get late and I was tired from the snow travel. While talking to Matt about the two true thru hikers we met yesterday named Breeze and Monster it was clear we were average hikers. They had just covered over 400 miles through the snow using snow shoes and we gasped and cried out everytime we saw a snow patch. There is a reason those guys made it and we didn’t. I went on to explain how they looked like they were chiseled out of stone where we looked like we were made out of play doh. Once again Matt quickly grew tired of me comparing ourselves to these two PCT gods, but I couldn’t help it. Breeze was a very humble and kind person who said, “we are all just doing our own thing out here.” I was star struck and wished he would have talked to us for another hour but after walking 23 miles that day he decided he would go back to the trail and hike another 7 miles.
Biline an average joe like us stuck with us for the latter part of the day, using us for our guthooks app and trail finding ability. I kept telling him only a half more mile of snow then it will all clear up. It was clear that the campsite we were shooting for would be covered in snow so we looked up above the trail 400ft and saw some dry rock outcroppings. We slogged up the hill and found a barely campable spotband called it a day. We camped on top of some low lying shrubs and Biline cleared a small spot on top of a rock.