Rock Creek to Trout Creek
Summary: You go up to the top of Sedum Ridge and then down,
down to the flood plain of the Wind River. Not many views or much water
make this one of the dullest sections.
Our first rather dull day of hiking took us up a creek tributary to Sedum
Ridge, where the trail paralleled an old mining road. We had to get water
early in the hike since there would be a 7 mile stretch without anything
until Trout Creek. Rick's Achilles tendon was bothering him so we took the
climb up and down the ridge slowly. The one strong point was the continued
abundance of old growth cedars and Douglas fir. I had never seen much lowland
old growth forest before. Now we were cruising through it-except for sections
that had already been logged over.
Near the end of the day we came to an overlook where I found, in the
distance, a crane towering above the tree tops. It was the University of
Washington's Wind River Crane,
where forestry scientists study the ecology of the old growth canopy. Since
I work for the UW I had heard a lot about it, now I saw it in action.
We lumbered down the ridge and found that our potential campsite at Trout
Creek was near a road and a bridge. The site had a couple picnicking at
the table, so I continued over the bridge to see if I could find a site
on the other side. No such luck, so Rick asked them if they were going to
leave soon. They were very nice about giving up the campsite so that we
could use it.
There was a table, firepit and even a tent site--what luxury. However,
the occasional car on the road took away any feeling that we were still
in the wilderness.
That evening we had chicken curry with couscous-one of my most successful
backpacking dinners. We also met more through hikers-Boy Scout and Salty
Bitch, a couple from New Jersey. While Boy Scout had hiked the AT, this
was Salty Bitch's first long backpacking trip. She said it was very hard
at first, but now she had gotten into the rhythm of it. I asked how she
got her trail name, and she admitted that she was outspoken at times and
not afraid to piss other people off. At the end of the conversation, her
boyfriend said, "Come on Salty, we need to get going." I was amazed
that even he used this pejorative trail name for his girlfriend.
Rick toasts our tent site--groomed by the Forest Service
for PCT hikers.
Day Eight-Part One
Day Eight-Part Two
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