Friday, June 01, 2018 – 14.4 miles
The sun returned today, but shade moderated the heat. After more elevation gain, I got my views of Shasta and Shastina and Castle Crags, then the trail began a long descent to Castella. I tweaked a calf muscle and it was pretty painful, so I wrapped it and took some Advil and double-poled for awhile. A couple passed me during that time. No, YOU’RE using your poles wrong.
When I hit Soda Creek Road, I couldn’t see any trail markers. I continued via the directions in eTrails and made it to Castle Crags Campground, where site 25 is reserved for PCT hikers ($5 per night, coin showers). There I found the couple from earlier and another couple they’re hiking with: thru-hikers who had skipped the Sierras and decided to head NOBO instead of SOBO like the crew I had met before. We discussed the infamous snow between Etna and Seiad Valley. A solo male hiker had described it to them as ‘a wall of snow’ but we’ve all been unable to find evidence of substantial snow with online resources.
I sent a resupply package to Castella, but have decided to go into Mount Shasta for a sickness rest day and much-needed laundering (the ‘handkerchief’).