Pacific Northwest Trail; mile 373.2

Monday, August 19, 2019; day 30

I rose to the sound of cars moving up Boundary Road. I was pleased with my decision to continue the walk in daylight.

After a brief period I  joined Flume Creek Road. I was relieved by its dirt tread and the likelihood of less traffic.

I collected water from Flume Creek . After returning to my pack, a man pulled up in a truck and asked who I was working for– if I was with the city. I found this question amusing. I told him that I was hiking the trail. He mentioned that they would be doing some work on Flume Creek Road for the next couple of days. I told him that I hoped to be long gone by nightfall. Three other trucks followed as I impatiently waited to relieve myself in the brush.

I reached the Flume Creek Trail junction. I sat for a break before starting the climb. I heard engines revving. Motorbikes came rushing by. There were two of them. A few minutes later, three more. I confirmed for them, that I had seen two others “They went up ahead.” I said, willing them to move along.  I was eager for solitude, to be away from engines. I was thankful that I would be rejoining a trail.

Back on trail, the green hues were vibrant and playful. I was welcomed by the serenity of a space free of automated travel.

I stopped for huckleberries and continued the climb.

I jumped, startled by large grouses hurried launch into flight. I laughed. Such amusing, chubby, wobbly creatures.

The views along Abercrombie Mountain were spectacular.

I joined the Abercrombie Mountain Trail and began my descent.

The trail was so well defined. I was able to hike in to the night with ease and enjoyment.

I joined Silver Creek Road.

I came upon a roadside trail camp with a creek. Other than its proximity to the road, it was a lovely space.

Sometimes I get uneasy camping by roads. Then I remind myself of how unknown I am; how unexpected, nearly non-existent I am as I travel through the backwoods alone. For a moment, this makes me feel better.

I star-camp, drifting to sleep with thoughts of town on my mind.

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