June 4: The rim above the North Fork of the Feather River to a few miles into the Lassen National Forest — PCT mile 1279 to 1295

Cowboy camping turned out one not such a good idea. Too many bugs kept pestering me: mosquitos, biting flies of some sort, gnats and ants. It was too warm to zip up my sleeping bag and the breeze made my bag-turned-quilt drafty. Oh well.

I woke up at first light and started hiking down to Belden, some 4,000 feet below me and arrived in time for a breakfast that was just too big:

That’s 3 huge pancakes. I could only eat one. I then crossed the Feather River and started hiking back up to higher elevations.

There was a LOT of Poison Oak on the trail today

I think I avoided it, but it was everywhere in some places.

An original 5-stamp rock mill on display at the Hwy 70 rest area that was really cool to see.

It was used to crushed quartz and extract the tiny amounts of gold in it.

Soon, I was looking down on the N. Fork of the Feather River

I found an awesome dunking spot in a large stream.

It was warm today and the first part of the uphill is in an area that burned a few years ago so there is little shade.

I met a a few hikers that trekked from Mexico to the Sierras, then jumped almost to Oregon to hike South and hopefully get through the Sierras when the snows are gone. Then they will bounce back up North and continue on.

I was also passed by many PCTers that bounced to Sierra City to avoid the snowy Sierras and will hike them after they reach Canada. And then there’s others I know that are just going to slog through all the snow and complete the South to North journey as one uninterrupted hike.

I saw a lot of snakes today: mostly these green/grey racers:

But I also saw a large Garter Snake

The new flowers I photographed today included Brodea

And Pussy Paws

And I saw this kind of millipede

The uphill climb wore me out. When I started this morning the lizards would scatter. By the time I was looking for a camp spot they were not worried at all. I know they are Blue-Belly Lizards because I saw one laughing so hard at my miserable progress that he rolled on his back and held his stomach. Well, ok, that didn’t happen but I was walking mighty slow when I arrived at a great campsite.

I took a nice dip in the stream,

rinsed my smelly shirt and pants, had dinner ( 4 slices of salami, a cheese stick, some cookies and lots of water.

I crawled into my tent to write today’s blog and I’m now hearing the first owl of this trip! Pretty cool!

Thanks for reading!

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