PCT 2007 – Day 138 – Table Mountain – Panther Creek

Day 138 8-10-07 Tarp Tent 930′
View point, spring near Table Mountain – Panther Creek
26 (2) miles; 2191.3 (77.46) total miles; 4058.3 trip miles
70’s, sun with some clouds
Days camped alone 20

Critter Tour General Category
Deer count is 126
Marmot count is 53
Elk count is 23
Slug count is 8
Pika count is 8
Bear count is 7
Rattlesnake count is 6
Badger count is 1

I got up and was going by around 7. I did my best to be quiet since both Levi and Gus were asleep. Yukkie came over and said good morning to me before I even got out of my tent.

Table Mountain

The trail continued its upward trend until I reached a ridge at 3400′. I saw my first deer in WA right at the ridge. Around the corner I got my first views of Mt. Adams. After gaining the ridge, I had a 5 mile downhill. I passed many roads on my way down to Rock Creek. Next was Snag Creek where I got some water for the 3.6 mile climb ahead. Soon after Snag Creek, I passed yet another road then started the climb. When I got to the top, I took a short side trail to Road 41 where I sat down to have lunch in the sun. The trail through this section is so overgrown there is no place to sit and eat on the actual trail. It’s a total jungle.

Mount Adams

After lunch I had another downhill of 5.6 miles. At times it got pretty steep and I felt the burn in my thighs. At one point I came to a sweet lookout over the Wind River. It was a long way down to the bottom.

Cool mushrooms

Along the way down I ran out of water so I stopped at a small creek for some. I saw a nice pool just a few feet down the creek so I stepped over a few fallen logs that looked slippery as hell and made a large step to a rock. When my foot hit the rock, it slipped right out. I spun around so I was facing upstream and I was falling backwards downstream. My whole hike flashed before me as I pictured myself smashing my back on the rocks behind me. I saw a sapling to my right and grabbed for it. It turned out to be this plant with prickles all over. I had already grabbed it at this point; but once I felt the prickles, I let go. It must have been enough to help since I slipped on a few more rocks before finally catching myself and stopping my fall. I pulled the prickles from my forearm and thanked whoever was watching over me. It gave me a huge scare!!!

Great view

At the bottom of the descent I ran into Teach, another Southbounder. We talked a bit and then I moved on to the store to get my food drop. Once to the store, I met Mona Lisa and Slim Jim. They are an older couple from Montana finishing their through hike from last year. I got my boxes and organized my food. They took off to the campground up the trail. As I organized my stuff, I saw my fourth snake of the day.

A welcome sight

Once I was done at the store, I checked my email and hiked the 1 mile back to the trail. I only had to do 2 miles to the campground so I took it easy, plus Bessy weighed a ton. When I got close to Panther Creek, I saw a guy sitting next to a log. It turned out to be Old School who I met way back in Mission Creek. He had been off the trail due to a broken foot. He no longer has the old school gear but new lighter stuff. I decided to stay with him, so I set up and cooked dinner. After that it was off to bed and time to catch up the journal finally.

Scatman 2011- Today I made up for the low miles yesterday.  Though most of my day was in the woods I did get a few good views making it worth it.  After the Sierra some might take great views for granted but not me.  Unlike the Appalachian Trail where I expected to be in a green tunnel for most of the time, on the PCT I expected lots of views.  So days where I was in the woods a lot weren’t as fun but when I got a view it made up for it.  (well most of the time).

It was cool to meet Old School again.  He looked so different from when I say him months before.  We had a great evening catching up and just taking about gear and how different our hikes had been.  As much as I hate the saying “Hike your own hike”, everyone in one way or another does hike their own hike.  That statement contradicts my normal belief that you can’t really hike your own hike unless you hike completely alone.  I guess what I mean is everyone might not get to Canada or Mexico the say way, or in the same amount of time.

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Scatman

Get out there!

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