There were slightly less bugs swarming around this morning than when I had went to bed last night. I packed up quickly and hit the trail. About a mile in, I passed a National Forest camp ground that had a pit toilet. Which meant that at least today, I would not have to dig a cat hole and defend myself from mosquitoes at the same time.
Today’s hike was from lake to lake and when not alongside a lake, it was through the woods. It was a quiet day and I only ran into a few other hikers on the trail. I took a break about 16 miles at an overlook of Odell Lake, which was a sizable lake with some motor boat traffic on it. I just sat there for a solid 15 minutes looking out over the lake.
I kept hiking until 6:40, when I reached Charlton Lake. I set up next to a group of hikers. There were significantly less bugs tonight. Add to that, they had a fire going and it made for a nice evening. One of the lady’s there name was Shady. She said that the lake they had stayed at last night was about the same bug level and due to the bugs, she used her air pad to float on the lake for about an hour to escape.
Another lady camping with us was carrying an almost 40 lb pack due to the 10 day’s worth of food. She decided that she had way over purchased at the last resupply and gave me some of her extra food including a Mountain House freeze dried meal and some oat meal. I was extremely grateful. Tonight was the first night in a while, where I sat up talking even after finishing my dinner. It is normal for the day of hiking to be fairly boring, and when the evening is spent setting up camp, eating, and then going straight to bed - it does not make for a good combination. So it is nice to end the day by meeting new people and talking with them.