August 22, 2017
Mile 2111.65 – Mile 2136.14
Got up and hiking today earlier than we have in a while, which felt good. I swear I’m a morning person in real life, but I struggle so hard to get up every morning out here. We stopped by a water source for a breakfast break, and ran into Tripod, another hiker who we hadn’t seen since the hostel in Tahoe. It was really nice to see him again. The morning was pretty uneventful, although we noticed the valley below was filled with some white substance. We couldn’t tell if it was smoke or just mist, but we couldn’t smell any smoke so we thought it was likely just clouds. However, as we neared midday and descended into the valley a bit, the air suddenly became very hazy and thick with the smell of campfire. Something was definitely burning nearby.
After a lunch break with Tripod, we continued walking in a white world. We were up on some exposed ridge, but any kind of view there might have been was entirely obscured by the smoke. We eventually came upon two forest service personnel, who informed us that the nearby Indian Creek fire had blown up overnight and was still growing in size and approaching the trail. They let us know that we were still free to continue on, but warned us that the trail might be closing later today or tomorrow, and they took down our name, number, and planned camp spot in case they needed to evacuate us during the night. This definitely added some excitement to an otherwise highly uneventful day.
We continued on, periodically running into more forest service employees. Another pair took our information again, and told us they were not recommending that anyone camp in the valley tonight. Luckily, they said our planned camp spot would probably be fine. At one point, we came out into an open area and could see the huge plume of smoke rising out of the forest below. We could even see the fire fighting planes flying over dumping stuff onto to the fire. It was pretty crazy.
We got to camp while it was still light out, which is certainly nice, and we only have 8 miles down to Cascade Locks tomorrow, which is super exciting. We’ve already planned out everything we want to eat and drink while we’re in town. Last day of hiking in Oregon tomorrow!!