The day began with a hike up the Mission Creek Basin. It was a tricky 6 miles as there were many places the trail had been washed out. It took me quite a while to work my way through it.
Today was not as hot as the previous day. The weather was overcast and since I was hiking to higher elevations, it was cooler than normal making it great weather for backpacking.
I stopped at a little place with picnic benches to take a break and eat lunch. Oliver came up the trail about 5 minutes later and joined me. We took our time with lunch and filling up water. After eating and as I prepared to leave, I said good-bye to Oliver. He was going to extend his lunch break to include a nap and then continue his hiking. I am not sure when or if I will see him again as I will be traveling further today; but I sure hope I do, as we have enjoyed each other’s company.
I finally arrived to camp at 7:15 in the evening. It is the latest I have gotten to camp so far. As I was hiking in, there was a large group of hikers who were sitting at one of the two picnic tables in the field. I joined them after setting up my tent. One of the ladies was celebrating her birthday. Her friend had put two candles into a cookie, and we all sang Happy Birthday together. At the table was a girl named Ashes. She shared her story of how she was given her trail name.
A couple of days into her trek, she found what she thought was a geocache. It did not seem too unreasonable, since one of the other people she had been hiking with had found one the day before. When she opened it to see what was inside, she found a note. Two lines into reading the note, it became apparent that it was a memorial letter and after further examination, it turned out the box was an urn. Thus her trail name became Ashes.