Mile #2586, South Fork Camp, North Cascades NP

Today was a difficult day, but for reasons different than the past few days.  I woke up this morning with an easy, 15-mile descent to the Stehekin River and its High Bridge ranger station/campground.  With my mind finally off of bushwhacks, blowdowns, and bridge collapses, it quickly signaled hunger.  Apparently all of the physical strain of the past week had gotten ahead of my calorie intake and at around 10:30 this morning I became voraciously hungry, more than breakfast and a 2oz morning snack of Fritos could handle.  I quickened my pace and began fantasizing about well-stocked hiker boxes, vending machines, and even Girl Scouts selling cookies at the ranger station (ridiculous I know, but the mind wanders with appetite!)  Of course, the ranger station was just an outpost by the river, seemingly without electricity even.  There was an option to take a shuttle 10 miles to the small, lakeside resort of Stehekin, where there’s a bakery, but wasting an afternoon chasing down doughnuts wasn’t appealing (remember, I’m trying to make this a continuous 261 miles in the wilderness).  I met Bob, the caretaker of the ranger station, and while I slowly ate a snickers bar and “brewed” coffee, he brought me two oranges.  Delicious.  I must remember to send him a thank you note when this trip is through.  Appetite quelled, I marched on 12 more easy miles to camp.  

Strangely, I’ve barely seen a soul today and encountered no-one on trail.  I’m probably going to have to bum some food from passing hikers if my appetite keeps up.  I’ve still yet to see a northbound thru-hiker since crossing into Washington weeks ago.  Less than three days to Canada.  I’m camping alone by Bridge Creek.  Camping alone is peaceful and quiet.  I’ve camped alone for most of Washington and truly enjoy it.

ELEVATION RANGE (ft): 1,550-5,360

DAYTIME TEMPERATURE RANGE (F): 42-82

WEATHER:  Cool, overcast morning.  Warming through early afternoon with dark clouds gathering and moving NE by mid-afternoon.  Early evening sprinkle, but stopping after 20 min.

BREAKFAST: PB&J granola mixed w/ carnation instant breakfast and instant coffee (895 cal)

LUNCH:  Black Cherry Almond Clif Bar (250 cal)

                Snickers bar (280 cal)

DINNER:  Freeze-dried beef stew (480 cal)

                Instant apple cobbler (580 cal)              

SNACK: 4oz chili cheese fritos (640 cal)

              2 oranges (90 cal)

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