Pacific Crest Trail (2018) 32: End of the Spiral

Friday, June 29, 2018 – 0.50 miles

I was throwing myself a shameful pity party this morning about having to return to Ashland. One of the great things about long-distance hiking is seeing new trail every day, and I was wasting summer, returning to a place I had seen enough of, and so on. During the party I met Sid heading in the opposite direction. He had finally gone to the doctor and found out that his leg pain was due to an infection from a scratch he had received from a log. Who would have guessed? (Someone qualified, like the doctor.) The antibiotics were doing their work and his leg was much better. I explained why I was heading backwards and he offered me his water filter, since he also had chemical treatment. I couldn’t put him out that way, but I was touched.

All parties must end eventually and I got over mine. Yes, I was repeating trail, but that’s a million times better than being confined indoors somewhere. It was also a nice section of trail, and I was lucky to see dozens of Mardon skipper butterflies in the late morning. There’s a ‘Mardon skipper recovery area’ further up the trail to help protect the population. The little buggers are pretty cute.

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Mardon skipper (top)
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I suppose that one benefit of returning to Ashland was that I was able to complete the 0.5 miles of highway walking I missed before (I don’t care). I walked to Callahan’s to hitch and was quickly picked up by Donna, its owner. She seemed sweet and caring so I can understand why Callahan’s has a reputation as a hiker-friendly place. I picked up my clothes at the hotel, then went to the outdoors store. They had no Sawyer Squeeze and I didn’t feel inclined towards the alleged ‘MSR version of the Squeeze’, which was not similar, that the employee showed me. I likely would have bought it anyway if I were certain that my Squeeze had been compromised, but I’m leaning more towards the side of it being okay (no water comes out of the hole, I tell you!) so I decided to just replace my Nalgene and buy extra batteries for my Steripen. It takes an unusual type, CR123. The grocery store that sells geodes didn’t have them, but I discovered that the chain store next door is a hardware store.

Back to the trail tomorrow! 

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