Aug 10th
5mi N of Gibbons Pass(2239.6)-West of Bear Lake(2269.4)
Campsite Elevation: 8,304ft
Last night the wind picked up in the middle of the night and we were very happy to be in the shelter of the trees. Only problem was that there was a nearby tree that creaked eerily most of the night and woke me up multiple times. Cherry Picker said it kept him up too. It wasn’t until early morning that I got the energy to find my earplugs and they worked like a charm! I also was very hot through the night despite the cooler weather. As I came groggily in and out of sleep last night I remember worrying that I had the flu because I was u comfortably hot, achy, and had a sore throat. I woke up without the alarm at 6:30am, which is very late for me as I am usually leaving camp around that time. I was exhausted and felt like a truck had hit me. Then I realized that I must have started my period a bit early and I was right, shit! I in addition to uncomfortabke cramps, I felt crappy, zapped of energy, and annoyed to be in my own skin all day. I forced down food my stomach didn’t want knowing I needed it. It just sucks to be starting a 130mi leg this way and all I wanted to do all day was lie down and curl up in the fetal position.
I mentioned yesterday that we were entering the Anaconda-Pintler Wilderness today and that we heard from southbounders that it is one of the highlights of Montana. Well, we apparently haven’t hit the good stuff yet because today was pretty much walking through bland burn areas 90% of the day. This morning’s section had so much brush that the trail was barely distinguishable.

I was really hoping for a scenic distraction from how I was feeling and was sorely disappointed. There were consistent ups and downs, but they were fortunately gradual. Also, it was overcast most of the day with a coolness in the air and that helped a lot. We hit a lake that was nice and Cherry Picker quickly walked into it To pass the time, Cherry Picker and I finished listening to the last three hours of the most recent audiobook I’ve had called Gold. That was a good distraction and I really liked the book. After lunch, the afternoon clouds rolled in and the thunder rumbled all around us.

Fortunately, we dodged the storms and got a few minutes of a light sprinkle, which actually felt good. Then it cleared up again as we entered a dense forest and got our final water for the day.

We soon entered even more of the exposed burn area that is not good for camping. The plan was to hike til 7:30pm, but we did not see an end to the burn ahead and at 7pm, we saw a perfect patch of trees in a protected area. Neither of us were going to complain about stopping at 7pm as there were also more dark clouds approaching. Just after I finished my dinner and setting up the tent, it started raining and I was able to get in my tent with everything dry. It has stoppes raining for now, and I am sooo sleepy and dozing off repeatedly as I write this. Here I am, happy and cozy in my tent.

I am ready to SLEEP! Looking ahead in the map, it looks like we will hopefully get to some good stuff tomorrow, but there are lots of ups and downs. Hoping I feel more energized tomorrow too.

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