Day 98, 32 miles
Cascade-Siskiyou National Forest
Teri dropped me off at the trailhead on her way to work. It was a misty morning. Several miles in, as the trail slowly climbed, I could see down to Ashland.
This long, strenuous trek I have been on for months has been the most physically challenging commitment I’ve ever undertaken. I’ve never pushed myself so hard. I didn’t know I was capable of such physical demands and I’m still surprised at where my body is taking me every day, day after day, week after week. But more than even the physical challenge, it has been a mental and emotional one for me. I am mostly alone with only my thoughts for 10-14 hours of hiking each day. When I think of my grown children, I am comforted by the knowledge that they are happy and busy getting on with their young lives. They are independent and enjoying their friends and their jobs. Since reaching Oregon I’ve allowed myself to think of how much I miss them. I am getting closer to seeing them. I want to touch them so badly. Be close to them. Hug them. Feel their warm cheek against mine. Look into their eyes. My 26 year old daughter, Rachelle, still holds my hand. I love spending time with her. She has a calming energy. When my son, Cody, 22, looks into my eyes and smiles it warms my heart. He has me wrapped around his finger and knows it. It’s all wonderful. I’m so lucky.
Camped at Klum Landing Campground. Empty except for a few hikers. Right on a lake. Where are all the car campers? Free hot showers! I took one right away. I charged my phone in the clean, unused bathrooms and used hot water to make my dinner, coffee, and oatmeal the next morning. Great spot!