Daily mileage: 27
Turns out my campsite was perfect. When I cowboy camp it doesn't bother me to sleep on the trail, it's usually just the easiest thing. But at 4:45 there were definitely people on the trail and I sure was glad I was tucked away behind some rocks all cozy and unobtrusive.
Finished the climb contouring underneath some pretty cool rock.
Around the ridge line I went, enjoying the views. Especially cool seeing the backside of what I had just walked around.
That's Mt Jefferson, my goal for the evening.
Then it was back to walking through burns. A trail crew said they had cleared 89 trees from the trail the day before. Much appreciated but there are still plenty to climb over as you head up the mountain. So that's the jagged looking rocks I was on earlier this morning.
Nice break at Shale lake.
More views as the burn continued sprinkled with a few actual live trees.
Only one big stretch of confusing snow and then back to lakes and forest and just patchy snow. Finally made it to Milk Creek, a bit more than I expected later in the afternoon.
Doesn't look to bad but over my knees and pretty darn strong. Made it across and started up the mountain. Basically just hiked till dark trying to get a view of the sunset. I've heard Russell Creek can be a nasty crossing so the morning sounded like a better plan.
No such luck with such a great campsite tonight. Back to cowboying on the trail, hope there aren't any early risers.
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