Despite getting almost no sleep we got up early the next morning so we could get into Chester early. For the first couple of miles I thought we were both going to be really sullen and cranky. Kyle didn’t even ask how my poop went. But after three miles he turned me around and stated that he was in a good mood and everything was going to be fine. What a relief. The air was cleared and we laughed and teased. Today couldn’t be a bad day, because today was the day we made it to the half way point. That’s right, 1,325 miles down, that many to go. But first we had to make it there, and we had to go through some of the thickest brush we have seen on trail yet. It’s starting to become a trend that whenever the Backcountry Horsemen are in charge of a section of trail it is really overgrown. I imagine that from up there on their horse they don’t notice the sticks stabbing and scratching. Well we did. We pushed through it all though, went up and over Butt Mountain (we have been looking forward to Butt Mountain for the whole trail) and pretty soon we were at the midpoint.
What can I even say about being halfway. It feels amazing, like a huge accomplishment, but it also feels like there is still so much to do and like we are on a tight schedule. It is a very different trail than the AT. We also still have quite a bit of California left. But seeing that midpoint, it was a relief. It was a milestone in the longest state ever. It meant we were really getting somewhere. When we look at a map we will be sitting pretty. Now every step we take really feels like it is taking us to the boarder of the US and Canada. Now it feels real. We took pictures and videos and danced a fair bit. But we couldn’t sit there forever, we had places to be, so we ate a quick snack and moved on. We stopped for water and hang out with some hornets. Then we got down to the bottom, where it became truly flat, and I called my mom to chat while we finished the last few miles to the road. When we got there we had a soda, supplied by the trail angel, Piper’s mom and got a hitch after standing out on the highway for a while, cars whizzing by.
Chester is lovely, for a hiker town. We are staying in the nicest hotel we have had so far on trail, and we’ve raided the grocery store in town, drunk some fabulous milkshakes and I got to read all many birthday love I have been carrying around with me. Such wonderful notes and treats, foot care, candy, and love. It was incredibly touching and sweet and so good of Kyle to put it together and of my mom to send it. I stayed up late blogging and editing photos and of course, in the morning, neither of us wanted to leave. So we took a zero today, which was much needed because we have been pushing hard and far, and we didn’t get any sleep. It is good to relax and it will be good to get back out there. It always is. But first I have a pint of Ben and Jerrys to eat.