June 3: Bucks Lake to the rim above the North Fork of the Feather River — PCT mile 1261 to 1279

I slept in! Big soft bed! I finally got up at 7 and showered, cleaned my gear and packed up. Hawkeye slept in the whole time — noise does not bother him.

We went to the lodge for breakfast and I then caught a ride back to the trail. Hawkeye and two others who arrived last evening, Booboo and AJ, decided to hike up the road and catch the trail further on.

It was a hot day with a lot of up, but not nearly as much as yesterday. The trail would Crest a ridge and dip into the saddle before the next ridge. Often those saddles were lush meadows

I saw Mt. Lassen again- I’m getting closer!

The views were great as usual

And I saw some different flowers

At about 5:30 I arrived at the edge of the ravine that drops down to the North Fork of the Feather River and the small down of Beldon.

I had dinner then found that I have a strong cell signal here, so I decided to cowboy camp (no tent) here tonight and catch up on my bloods.

The warm breeze has cooled down and I got to see a nice sunset.

Thanks for reading!

June 2: Middle Fork of the Feather River to Bucks Lake — PCT miles 1247 to 1261

I got up at first light to beat the heat to pack up and start pounding out the uphill miles. Hawkeye is sleeping in.

I soon come across a few other early morning walkers: the California Newt

I also came across some amorous millipedes

The other thing about early morning hiking is that I get to cleat the spider webs strung across the trail — usually with my head it seems. I started swinging one of my hiking poles up in front of me to clear them.

I’ve also developed the “skill” of flicking dead limbs off the trail to make it easier for the hikers behind me.

So, I imagine someone saw a Hiker with one pole swinging at the air in front of me and the other pole swinging side to side across the trail sending branches flying, they would stay clear. Maybe that’s why I hike alone a lot.

I stopped to take break on a large rock owned by a lizard. I expected him to run off as I sat down, but not this guy! He stuck around and did pushups to try and frighten me away!

I spotted some more dry climate flowers: Iris and Monkeyflower:

I also enjoyed seeing the bright green of mosses near seeps.

The trail was beautiful, even though it was up and rather warm. So much for my “clean” clothes.

I arrived at the road to Bucks Lake, and hiked down the road to the country store to buy my resupply food for the next leg. I was able to find what I need, but it was pricy.

The local lodge offers a free beer to PCT hikers, and I ordered a real dinner to with it. I could not finish the dinner.

Hawkeye arrived after a while and we decided to share a lodge room. Hot showers and sink laundry!

Also staying at the lodge was this extended family that invited me to come sit and talk with them as they cooked dinner.

I warned them that I would probably not remember names, and after a few glasses of wine they provided me, the fate was sealed.

We had a wonderful evening talking about this and that and me answering questions about PCT hikers. Wonderful family!

June 1: Whisky Springs to the Middle Fork of the Feather River— PCT miles 1230 to 1247

I do ept great, probably the best so far this trip. I must be getting accustomed to sleeping on my pad.

I got to watch an orange sunrise from within my tent. I felt lazy so I slept in a bit again, until 6. The morning was initially chilly, but quickly warmed up.

I rounded a corner and got my first glimpse of My Lassen! It’s the white thing that kinda looks like clouds:

I stopped at a small, shady spot for lunch and then napped a bit. I’m kinda liking this routine!

There are a lot of Western Fence Lizards on the trail that scurry off long before I can snap a picture. I did find a pair of Alligator Lizards that were either fighting or mating,

This afternoon I descended from about 6,500 feet to less than 3000 and watched the forest change from Douglas fir, Cedar and Hemlock, to Black Oak and Manzanita, to Live Oak and Dogwoods.

There were lots of flowers here:

I finally made it all the way down to the Feather River

The water looks a bit brown, but it is still Wash day! Everything gets washed except sleeping clothes. The river is moving fast , but I found a small cove where the current was weak. It felt wonderful to take a bath! I hung all my clothes out to dry overnight- it’s so warm down at this elevation, I don’t expect any problem.

The mosquitos here are the most I have seen, I think. I set up my tent, and was eating dinner when Hawkeye arrived. He is deaf and does not talk much, but he talked even less today: he quickly set up his tent and climbed in to get away from the mosquitos.

I finished dinner, climbed into my tent, and went on a killing spree to get rid of the dozens that followed me in.

Tomorrow is a killer day: up over 4,700 feet. These deep river valleys are brutal.

Thanks for reading!

May 31: Little Jamison Creek to campsite near Whisky Springs: PCT miles 1214 to 1230

I woke up to find the snowmelt puddles frozen over. Apparently, it got below freezing last night.

A stiff breeze was blowing and no frogs could be heard. I’m not sure where they go when it gets really cold.

Progress was slow at first because any snow bank I needed to cross was hard and icy.

There were numerous snow banks that I had to contend with, but I did find time to photograph some flowers

Plants (Corn Lily)

And views

Around noon I was only plodding along and my feet and legs were sore, so I found a flat shady area and took a short nap. I woke up in about an hour and everything felt fresh and ready to hike again. I’m going to have to remember this!

I found my nice campsite and slept well.

Thanks for reading!

May 30: Sierra City to Little Jamison Creek (20.5 miles)

I got up at first light and started hiking up highway 49 towards the trail head. There were no cars about– the town was very quiet. I started early because I needed to hike up over 3000 feet to near the top and then around the Sierra Butte peaks that overlook Sierra City. I made good time because the weather was very cool.

After a few hours I was looking down on downtown Sierra City.

The trail was in good shape and it was a nice, although tiring hike up and around Sierra Butte.

I saw a lot of wildflowers along the way,

And some more awesome views

But then I started hitting patches of snow

There were only a few places where I had to be super careful. Many time I could avoid the snow patches.

I found a nice campsite with running water nearby as well as a large pond with tons of frogs. I was serenaded to sleep by all the croaking.

May 29: Zero day in Sierra City

Sierra City seems like it would be a nice place to stay, but it is a very quiet town on the Memorial Day weekend.

At 10:30 the Post Office opened and I got my boxes! I now have another 5 days food, my lighter hiking shoes

And a second trekking pole to replace my Whippet pole. I get to mail my Whippet, Crampons and heavier boots back home. I decided to hold onto the gaiters a bit longer as I’ve heard from Wit that there is another 8 mile section of snow to trudge and post-hole through.

Damian learned that the resupply he sent to a local restaurant was taken by a bear that broke into the storage area! Only his resupply box was taken. It is ironic because he is the only only carrying a bear can in his pack! I had some extra that I gave him, and the restaurant owner says he’ll give him some food too.

The day was spent recharging my portable battery, posting blog updates, doing laundry (rinsing in the sink), and eating fresh(er) food.

I practiced my perspective illusion photography: this elk almost got run over

Evan, who is hiking the PCT until he finds a small town that will give him a job, has found his summer home. He’ll be helping at a BnB and at a market. He has no money so he’ll still be sleeping at the church.

I went to bed early since I’m rising early to tackle as much of tomorrow’s uphill in the morning.