Day 82, Mile 1197.5 – Into the Doldrums

Leaving Lake Tahoe was extremely difficult. It meant leaving a bed, shower, toilet, refrigerator (with ice machine!), beers, an absolutely GORGEOUS house on the lake (oh yeah, did we mention that our friend D. Jay’s parents have a house directly ON Lake Tahoe?), and most importantly our friends. Six of our University of Washington alumni friends, mostly from the Bay Area, came out to meet us in Tahoe. We stayed at D.Jay’s parents’ beautiful home (thanks so much Dianne and Rafe!!) and spent our days paddle boarding, swimming, sun bathing, eating, and drinking by the lake. It was wonderful – a luxurious break from the trail. Saying goodbye to our friends and the lake was hard, but the call of the trail was strong, and at long last, we had to leave.

Now, we are officially setting off for Northern California – the great unknown as far as we are concerned. The terrain has been getting easier, and the miles come quicker. It’s been rolling hills and long ridge walks, with cedars and pines providing shade from the sun. But It’s starting to become more of a mental challenge than a physical one. Northern California, so we’ve heard, is a monotonous and boring section – “the doldrums,” as it’s known among thru hikers. So although it is no longer physically difficult to put in big miles, we now face the challenge of motivating ourselves to get up every morning and hike. Our spirits are high right now though, and we are feeling great physically.

We’ve made it to the tiny town of Sierra City and are staying with Trail Angels Bill and Margaret Price, who run the Red Moose Inn and allow hikers camp in their backyard. From here, we will hike north toward a parade of tiny towns in Northern California, the next being Belden.


The pier in front of Dianne and Rafe’s wonderful home


Brent, relaxing in the sun


Good times in Tahoe! Shy even brought a swimsuit for Ashleigh to wear!



Hiking the PCT never looked so good. Hanging with Grunder, Ben, Brent, and Shy.



A little family meal on the pier



Pow-wow on the floating dock, with beer!



Our first morning back on the trail – breakfast at Lake Aloha


This is what Northern California has looked like so far.


The Benson/Anderson Sierra Club Ski Hut where we stayed with hikers Drop Bizkit and Honey Bunny (whose awesome boyfriend gave us great trail magic the next day – fruit, soda, chips, awesome. Thanks Brian!).


Thanks, Sierra Club!


The amazing two story outhouse at the ski hut


Hiking along a ridge


We are still surrounded by amazing wildflowers!


The very hiker-friendly Red Moose Inn even has this awesome PCT sign outside (though according to our maps, we are just shy of 1,200 miles).

1 thought on “Day 82, Mile 1197.5 – Into the Doldrums

  1. diane roehrich

    wow! such beautiful photos and so interesting to read your journal – what an exciting trip!
    Proud of you for such a great accomplishment!!


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