Date: Friday, 21 July 2017
Start: Camped by the trail at Mile 3.0 of the Oregon Skyline Trail alternative to the PCT
Finish: Camped at Shelter Cove Resort at Mile 20.5 of the Oregon Skyline Trail, 4802 ft
Daily Miles: 16.5 Oregon Skyline Trail
Total PCT Miles: 1360.8
Weather: Cool early then warm and sunny
Breakfast: Chocolate pies and peanuts
Lunch: Cheeseburger and fries
Dinner: Pizza and ice cream
Aches: Ribs and upper abdomen still very sore and tender, particularly lying in bed.
Highlight: Making good time to Shelter Cove Resort and finding their grill was open and serving lunch.
Lowlight: None really.
Pictures: Click here
Even though I stopped late and then stayed up late doing my journal for the last two nights, I got up at 5:00am and was hiking by 6:00am with the goal of covering the 16 miles to Shelter Cove Resort as quickly as possible, and hopefully in time to buy some lunch if they have a cafe (I knew they had a small store).
It was quite cold, especially for my hands, but that encouraged brisk walking and the trail was quite easy as it passed through a lightly-wooded pine forest on a sandy surface. I stopped for a break at a National Forests campground for horse riders after a couple of hours and then followed the trail steadily uphill for two hours into the Diamond Mountain Wilderness, stopping for my second break at a very peaceful mountain lake, one of a number passed on the Oregon Skyline Trail (which didn’t really follow any kind of skyline). To the left, the snow-covered peak of Diamond Mountain could occasionally be seen, but mostly the trail was through forest which prevented views.
The last couple of hours was steadily downhill following a raging crystal clear stream through shaded pine forest from which I emerged almost at the gates of Shelter Cove Resort shortly before 1:00pm. I asked whether they had any cabins available, but they didn’t, and it was clear the resort, which bordered a large lake, was doing good business. I settled for a tent site, had some lunch, and then spent the afternoon doing the usual laundry, showering, planning and food (and insect repellent) shopping for the next leg. I’m back on schedule and happy about that, and looking forward to a full day off in Sisters in four days time, assuming I can get a bed.