Sunday, June 23, 2013

June 22, 2013
Day 5 - Pitamakin Pass
Atlantic Creek CG to Two Medicine CG
~15 miles

For the first time this trail I woke up with sore feet. The soreness went away after a mile or two, but returned towards the end of the day. 

The hike up and over Pitamakin Pass was very nice, with beautiful views on the way up and from the top. I seem to end up in the lead more often than not when we get to the snowy sections. I don't know if its because I just have more energy or for navigation purposes, but either way I don't mind, and actually enjoy taking on the challenge of leading through the snow. 

The original plan for the day was to continue on from Two Medicine Lake CG over another snowy pass and into East Glacier, but I decided it wasn't worth the extra effort considering the fact that I need to pick up a package at the PO and they won't be open until Monday anyway. Additionally, my feet could use a bit of a rest (happy feet = happy hiker).  And as a bonus the campground store has food and beer!

Since arriving at the campground I have been enjoying the sunshine, food, and beer, and the fact that I don't have to hang my food (bearproof  lockbox). Sitting in the store eating food and looking out the window onto the lake  it felt as if I was on a mini vacation within the hike. 

At 8pm there was a ranger talk about birds, conveniently located in the amphitheater right next to my campsite. The guy (Dave Hagan?) was very entertaining and got many if the kids (as well as adults) involved in the talk. I learned that some birds can fly at altitudes of 30,000' and dive in the water as deep as 1,500'! Also, the Clark's nutcracker has an incredible memory, stashing seeds/nuts in up to 3,000 different places over a 25 mile area and are able to remember roughly 2,900 of those places. Craze amaze. 

Sent from my iPhone


  1. Sounds like a lot of fun. I'm glad you can do this to "recharge" before nursing school. I hiked my first little piece along the pct from the santiam pass to 3fingered jack on Sat (nothing by your standards, but fun nonetheless). Maya was going wild sliding down the snow, then climbing back up and doing it all over again. I enjoy reading your posts, and imagining what you are going through. Stay safe and have fun! - Chris

    1. It is already a pretty crazy experience and I can't wait to see what happens next! I loved that section in central Oregon hiking between all the cascade volcanoes down there. Sounds like Maya had some fun glissading too! Wish I could have seen that. And thanks for commenting!

  2. Dear Alex,
    Fantastic! It is so great to read about your days and to picture you on this adventure.
    After returning from Yachats last night, your Dad emailed us some of your beautiful
    photos. Wow! Although, I didn't really like the cougar paw print one so much :-).
    Take good care, safety first. Uncle Jim says "Hi!".
    Much love, Aunt Bonnie

    1. Thanks Bonnie! I talked to my dad a little about Yachats and it sounds like it was a constructive weekend, but there is still more to do (not too surprising see how much stuff was there). I'm doing my best to stay safe and I think the big animals up here are more afraid of me (or my smell) than I am of them, so they tend to run the other direction. That is with the exception of the flies, mosquitoes, and ticks that seem to be incessantly "bugging" me.