July 22nd

Relaxing with Spock at the Red Moose Inn.

Today was a very much needed zero. I’ve had a lot of little things not go my way in the last week or so, and I need to hit the reset button. It is reality that the trail will have it’s ups and downs and here is a list of my recent downs.

Here’s a list of some things…
-I broke my camera falling in Kerrick Creek and had to buy a new one.
-I left the old camera in Echo and the hiker bringing it to me (Snowblind) got injured and I will have to wait til Ashland to get the disk.
-I keep losing my Gatorade bottles for water and buying new ones.
-An adapter on my charger broke and I had to take an unplanned night in Truckee to charge my GPS.
-I had to pay a lot to get a replacement piece for the charger sent to Sierra City.
-I somehow got distracted and didn’t pay my lone credit card bill and got a nice fat penalty fee.
-The rash on my feet returned after one day on dry trail:/
-The time is ticking and all the hikers are feeling the pressure to do more miles and less stops.
-I’ve lost 14lbs (down to 108lbs!) and feel more lethargic.
-Hitting dry ground only made my ankle worse!

Coming into town yesterday, reality hit me with my ankle and I am no longer trying to deny what I’ve done to it. I had a major surgery on it about 6 years ago after I had severed a ligament on the outside that caused pain and rolling. The first day out of Kennedy Meadows (before the Sierras), I jumped over a stream and it completely went out on me. For the past month, I’ve tried to tell myself it will be better after the snow, but a full day on solid ground yesterday definitely showed me otherwise. It is swelling and painful, so the trail angel Margaret (who runs the Red Moose) took me to a neighboring town to get a brace in Downieville. Margaret and Bill were amazing hosts and it was great to spend the day with them. Margaret showed me how she and Bill find gold out here and she let me know that I’m an enantiomorph because I’m a mirror twin. Coach K is a hiker from last year volunteering and since only one other hiker came in today, we got to have steak for dinner!

A steak dinner with Coach K, Jason, Bill, and Margaret. Mmmm!

Since I was in a small town, the only way to get a brace was to make an appointment with a doctor. While I was there, the trail again brought me one of the best surprise coincidences! The doctor I saw, Dr. Coleman(I hope I got that right!) reads my journal. What a small world! Her identical twin (I have an identical twin too!) lives in Portland (where I’m from!) and told her about my journal. The two of them hope to hike the PCT someday and they’ve been following the journal. Here’s a shout out to her sister Kelly in Portland. Hi! I look forward to meeting you after the hike!

Dr Colemen got me a sturdy brace that is helping a ton and I’m ready to hike on! Thanks!

As I said, know this trail will have it’s ups and downs and I am really working hard to start anew from Sierra City. This rest will be a great start and I’m eating a lot to fatten up. At the doctor, I was already up 4lbs from Truckee. Yay! I’m excited to remember what it feels like to be on dry trail soon. The snow is clearing up and my mileage should increase. I also want to say thank you for all the support I’m getting from family, friends, and people I’ve never even met! It has been so much more than I could have ever imagined and it is really motivating. The picture on the left is from my friend, Greg, who visited the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem and posted that on the wall. I keep it as the main photo on my phone and see it all day! Little things like that have been so great. I want to thank everyone who is sending care packages. My stepmom has been labeling the food and putting them in my resupplies as I go. It’s great to have dinner or a snack and see the name and think about the person who sent it:)

I’ve also had a surprising amount of offers from people I don’t know who want to send care packages. I wasn’t expecting that and it has also been a great surprise and motivation. I now have a PO Box that care packages can be sent to and I posted it on my Care Package tab. It is P.O. Box 42263, Portland, OR 97242.

That’s all I have for now. I’m off to watch an episode of Friday Night Lights before bed. What a great day!

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