I hated to leave that hotel, but I knew I would be staying at one of my favorite hostels in a day and a half. I had a maildrop box going to Rock N Sole Hostel. It was one of my favorites from 2016.
The forecast said more rain was coming with a cool front. Finally, blessed relief was on the horizon!
When Bud made the reservation, the owner told him that there was a section of the trail that was flooded, and that it would be knee deep. All I could think about was that nasty beaver dam that I had crossed the day before! I had planned to hike a short day, and then a short day into Rock N Sole, rather ham a long day, and a few miles the next day. Going the whole way would have put me over 20 miles for the day.
The forecast was dire with flash flood warnings for overnight. There was a shelter that I was shooting for that was right next to a highway. It boasted of a solar shower, a portable water outlet, and an enclosed shelter. Pizza could be delivered there.
When I got there, the building was so stuffy and moldy smelling. There are these lines in some shelters that hang from the ceiling and have cans on the bottom with a hook underneath. They are for hanging backpacks to keep the mice out of them. They had these lines on the inside of the enclosed shelter, indicating that there is a mouse problem in the building. I didn’t want to set up a tent with a storm coming. I was also worried about how bad that swampy area would be. I hired a shuttle to take me to the hostel early.
At supper that night, I quizzed some of the hikers who had come through the swampy area. They said it was bad, and the water was up to me their knees, and that it went on for several miles! I contemplated skipping that section…seriously! I knew, however, that I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I did that.
It didn’t rain as much as they predicted, and when I got up the next morning, the forecast wasn’t as bad. Since I was going to have to pay for another shuttle to the 501 Shelter, I decided to hike from the Hostel to the shelter. My thinking was that I needed to get through it before more rain came and filled it up, making it deeper! The hostel owner said it was run-off from the bad rain a few days ago, and that it usually goes down in a few days.
I asked Bud to pray for me, and took off with my slack pack. It was only about 9.5 miles. When I got to the swampy area, I found that the trail was indeed flooded–for several miles! The water had gone down enough that the side trails around it were not under water. I was able to go into the brush on the side of the trail, only getting my feet slightly wet. I was so relieved!
The water had gone down a lot. I could see how even the side trails had been flooded out before today. It’s just another example of how God is taking care of me out here.
Just a quick word about the Hostel, since I did a full blog post about it in 2016. The hostel here is very nice. I love the owners, and it is so peaceful here. Breakfast and Supper is included in the price. Not only is the food incredible, it is a LOT of food! Everything is decorated so cute, and they have made improvements since I last stayed here. It is still one of my favorite hostels.
I head out again tomorrow. The front has moved through, and the air is finally cooler and drier with several days ahead of very nice weather!