The next day we booked it into White Pass for a nero. A twenty four mile nero… So you know. Luckily for us it was an easy day, basically a very subtle uphill until a big down to the pass at the end. However, after our thirty one mile day our legs just weren’t moving as fast as we thought they were. We kept looking at our location and grumbling. We also started seeing a lot of people hiking out of White Pass so there was a lot of chatting to be done. Explaining what we are doing is a little bit complicated, by the end in order to save time we were just Southbounders, heading to Mexico. After amazing views in the morning we were mostly in the trees.
Finally we rolled into White Pass around three. We grabbed our packages and made panicked food decisions out of extreme hunger. We didn’t want to hitch all the way into Packwood so we just stayed at the Village Inn at the pass, but because there isn’t a restaurant at the pass dinner had to be improvised from what was available at a convienence store, so we found the ingredients for chili dogs and headed to our studio. The cool thing about the Village Inn is that every studio is privately owned by someone, so they are all different. Ours was super cute and simple, with a full kitchenette and tiny shower. We even had just enough service for me to check my email and find out that I got the job I interviewed for in Seattle, on the one condition that I could start no later than September 26th. I was able to get an email out accepting the position. Kyle and I high fived and giggled nervously. Our plan all along has been to finish this hike by September 20th, for Kyle friend’s Chris’ wedding and also for weather. This solidifies that date. At this point everything has to go right and we have to stick to a very strict schedule to make that happen. Which is both scary and exciting. It will require us to push ourselves hard, or we will be finishing on the weekends, something neither of us wants.
After four hard days it was lovely to have a night in a bed and eggs and bacon in the morning. From there we had six days to Cascade Locks, a resupply from my parents in person on FSR 23 outside of Trout Lake and exciting landscape to walk through like the Knifes Edge and Goat Rocks Wilderness. We couldn’t wait.