Daily mileage: 31.7
Well I woke up in a cloud this morning. I was dry but my pretty view of the mountains were all gone, just mist now. Headed down the trail feeling good. A few miles later I ran into the big group from Etna packing up camp. Said good morning and kept going. Pretty flat trail, hard to see much but there were some breaks in the misty cloudy morning.
The trail headed down to Marble Camp, an old ranger cabin and no camp to speak of. The whole big group had caught up to me by then so it was a very crowded and chatty breakfast stop. Then the climbing started and I was shortly by myself.
Enjoying the views and just being on the trail. Plus the miles seemed to be flying by, which hasn't happened in ages and felt fantastic. Over 1000 ft of climbing and I hit the top, then it was back down the other side. Even had to walk across some snowy sections. Been awhile since I saw more than a single little patch of snow on the trail.
The morning started out dry but it was not to be. At about 11 the mist turned to drizzle and the rain gear actually had to come out. Some climbing and contouring but the the real fun began. I think that it's something like 16 miles total of down before Seied Valley and I ended up doing quite a big chunk of that today. Right after I officially left Marble Mountain Wilderness the rain went from light to crazy downpour. My umbrella is actually pretty great in the rain too. It's nice to not wear the damp cold hood and it kept my torso pretty darn dry. Danimal caught up and we flew down the main climb hitting Grider creek and getting soaked by all the bushes on the trail in the process. After awhile I slowed down and lost Danimal, the day was starting to feel a bit long. At 28 or so miles in I was pretty ready to camp. Only problem was where. Normally I just lay out on the trail but with all the rain I thought my tent might be a nice safety net. So on I went following the creek and feeling like I was in a rainforest. Foggy dripping green everywhere, very cool. Ended up getting to Girder Creek Campground with the big group from Etna. Only 6.5 miles to Seied Valley in the morning and it's all along a road. Shouldn't be too bad.
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