Encounters

Day 103

After writing last night's post we were startled by a log cracking close by. It had to be something large, and something not afraid to be noisy. Within a few seconds we heard and felt giant footsteps approaching our tent. A huge huff exhaled from the beast- you could see its towering frame outlined by the moon on our vestibule.

We clapped and the giant thundered off. Thinking he was easily startled we went to sleep. About an hour later we both woke up- it was right next to our tent! I fumbled for my trekking poles, Ian tried to peek out to see what the hell was out there. What he saw was amazing...

A gigantic elk towering over our tent! Ian let out a yell. Startled, the elk galloped off, the dust cloud building in the ice blue light. After all the commotion we fell asleep, knowing we had a brush with the king of these woods.

Waking up slowly we hazily broke camp, ate breakfast and boogied. The day had a few snow hiccups early on, but otherwise it was just as scenic, green and quick moving as yesterday. Until the end... There was no sign for the spring we were banking on camping at and we overshot. It's amazing how little water resides in these relatively lush mountains.

Rushing forward, our water was dried up and so were we- the heat is taking it's toll on us. We hiked another two miles and came to a confusing intersection that was suppose to lead us to water. Frustrated because it was unclear where the spring lie, we split at the fork. Mine descended, but ians path kept shooting east. My dead ended, so I followed Ian along- hopeful we would find a spring and wouldn't have to keep going, dehydrated and exhausted. Then Ian gave a whistle and we hit h2o! We set up camp next to the path and small, but good water source. We were thankful, severe dehydration is never fun out here.

We tested our culinary skills and amped up our mashed potatoes with Backpacker pantry's salsa and spicy omelette sides. It was killer and filled the holes growing in our stomachs. With my trekking pole by my side I fall asleep in a very lively forest.

-Andy