Mile 1090.5 South Lake Tahoe to mile 1195.5 Sierra City

  It seems like so long ago. It was an overwhelming hot afternoon in the small desert town of Agua Dulce and I had just awoken from a much needed siesta. After taking shelter from the heat on a shaded church lawn, we were now heading out to hike through the night. The Juggernaut blazed ahead as the road quickly turned back into trail and the peaceful desolation of desert returned. I would only see one person that afternoon, a tough older man who was out trail running. I think we both thought each other to be crazy so naturally we stopped and talked for awhile. He offered me smiles and the last of his water, the latter which I denied. I told him I was heading home to Donner Summit and possibly ending my hike there…if I made it at all. After saying goodbye he turned back to me and shouted “It’ll be hard to walk past your old home but I think you will, you will keep going.” I smiled and trudged on up the dry, sunset drenched mountain side. “Ha!” I thought, “I’ll be lucky to make it to Casa De Luna…past Donner Summit…ummm yea right!” But…eventually…as with all things, time would pass. I would go on to reach the next oasis of Casa De Luna and would then go on to reach many more oases and waypoints over a 700 mile stretch…until one afternoon I would find myself standing on the ridge line looking down upon the small town of Soda Springs. I was home yet it was “home” no more…at least for now. And here it was I remembered the old trail runners words…”you will keep going.” So, as I dropped down off the ridge into my old stomping grounds, I thought “Yea, you’re right old timer, I think I will keep going for awhile longer.” And so far I have. But being “home” for a few days was amazing! No where on this earth have I ever felt such a sense of community…I was immediately welcomed back with open arms, warm hugs, friendly voices and familiar faces. It was awesome! But…as the saying going goes “home is where the heart is” and my heart now resides in Portland, Oregon so on I go…for awhile. But while “home” I did have the pleasure to experience the following…

best friends and ice cream…

   The return of the hi hatts…and they didn’t even get that dirty in 1200 miles Some of the greatest people ever and lots of love…I was fortunate to see so many of you. Justin…thanks for assuring me that Portland isnt far away and for your encouragement…when I think the trail is harsh for me I think of you and Shawn on it this past winter…you guys are serious bad asses! Thanks for taking us in Brendan, we love you!    I missed out on some great group photos but I still remembered to capture some great moments…the worlds greatest arborist…  The best General store ever! Thanks Tony and Cheryl!     Trail side reunions…  Thanks for meeting us on the trail and for being incredibly stellar people… And this was one of the most relaxing nights ever…seriously…thank you so much Dale and Kelly!!! Yum…but I’m sorry I drank a Mexican coke instead of an Icky!

 A sad but heartfelt goodbye with The Juggernaut…It was an honor to hike with you Mike…I’ll miss you!  And…lots more beauty ahead!!! 


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