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Archive for August 26th, 2006

Destination: Sisters Mirror Lake
Starting Location: Before Tadpole Lake
Today’s Miles: 20.20
Trip Miles: 1965.40
Before Tadpole Lake (1944.1, 5604) to Sisters Mirror Lake (1964.3, 5955) ascent (2694) descent (2310)

The last 1.5 miles had a 500 descent and it did not go well. I actually tried hopping on one foot for a bit – does not work. Walking in a semi squat stance worked the best on the really steep spots and I would love to have a video of that. When I got to Sisters Mirror Lake I walked to the waters edge, removed my shoes & walked out to a rock. I sat down, looked at the beauty around me, rested my chin in my hand and asked myself “what am I dong here”? No answer came but oddly I knew I was supposed to be here; by myself and hurt. I know the answer will come – but not on my schedule.
Met a nice group of people at Elk Lake Resort. They asked me what had been the toughest part. I thought back to the heat, the blisters, the waterless stretches, the ants, the snow, the rivers and I instantly knew the answer: right now.
Hoped to call home from Elk Lake but contrary to the guide books I was unable to secure a cell phone for hire. I am sure Lucky Liz is worried but she knows that hikers miss check ins frequently.
Met Thor, Knees, Red & ? just before Elk Lake and saw them again at Sisters Mirror Lake. Really nice folks. It was odd being the guest in their conversation rather than being a part of the group. At first I got a bit of quizzing to ensure I was indeed a northbound thru-hiker. I think I passed. Leaving, I ran into Restless Wind and Twisted Sister who I last saw in Independence during a Sierra Nevada Resupply. We got caught up and they were super supportive. Twister commented that I was skinny and was surprised when I told her I had been gaining weight since Old Station.
The forest is changing as we move north. The trees are smaller and are covered in drooping lichens that is often called Spanish Moss. The under story is very green and while dry now clearly indicates an abundance of yearly moisture. Walking slow allows me to hear the trees creak in the wind. Often it is perfectly still at the ground level but I hear the trees talking and when I look skyward I see their uppermost trunk and branches moving. Occasionally a dead tree will be propped against another tree and the old wood makes an eerie sound as if the bow of a violin was being pulled ever so slowly.

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