PCT Day 60: Mile 838.5-862.5 Evolution Valley + Basin



I woke in the Muir Hut surprised at the warms the 7 bodies inside managed to muster despite the cold temps at 1200 ft. Syssyphus, Ladybug, Happy, Opa, Biscuit, Shopping Cart, an myself occupied the hut on the pass. It was the second awesome camp we had made in 2 days, and I was really appreciative.

Stepping outside into the crisp air, the snow was hard from the nights temps. Postholing seemed to be a thing of yesterday as all of us but the Marmot Murderers (as we affectionatly nicknamed Shopping Cart and Buscuit) headed out facing north, racing the rising sun.

We chatted as we hiked, and I really enjoyed the freeing feeling of just following a terrain or landscape rather thn being bound to the confines of a trail. We decneded and Ladybug continued to post hole. He wasnt the happies camper by the time we reached dry land. Soon after the snow let up we found Opa chilling by a snowmelt fed lake, Happy and myself opted to take a dip. After stripping down I jumped in cannonball style, amused at the ice chunk that went floating by. After a nice sun drying, chatting with the crew, and making some nice coffee we were all less than enthused to move.

It was necessary and we pushed on, decending into the canyon that soon turned from granit walls to forest and vegitated mountainsides. We trekked on, seperating by pace, and I soon happened upon Happy about to cross the Evolution River. I opted to join him and we both waded into the icey current. The water seemed to rise as we pushed on, hobbling over the rounded creekbed stones. It wsnt until the last 20 ft that the current really became agressive, and we fought inch by inch until sucessfully standing on the other side.

After a quick break we were off again, soon decending to our lowest elevation of the day and twisting and winding following the furocious river that was made by snowmelt. After gathering water below a bridge, Lewis showed up! I hadnt seen the guy in quite a while and we caught up before pressing on.

The last hill of the day was a big boy, weighing in at 1700 lbs inside 3 miles. I pressed on, just grinding out the miles and sweating every step of the way. I could tell it was getting later and watched the sun start to show its golden stripes through the trees and leaves. Finally after a few grueling miles, I pulled into camp. I was pretty tuckered out and set up my tent as fast as I could as the mosquitoes here were absolutely terrible! Ladybug and Sissyphus warned me as soon as I walked up, but before the words got out of their mouths, I got bit 3 times. From the confines of my tent I stretched, made food, and was soon too tired to keep my eyes open.

Hiker Profile:

Opal- 25, from Buffilo NY. Very independent, hiking alone, and she waits for noone. She helped wrangle horses in Montana for the past 3 summers and finds that shes is most at home in the outdoors. PCT seemed to be a natural progression for her, so here she is, taking on the long distance trail solo!