Miles Today: 14.0

Mile Marker: 532.4 Partnership Shelter

The rain was non-stop all night and into the morning.  I kept waiting and waiting for a break this morning so I could pack up my tent.  I had all of my gear packed and was ready to go, but the rain wouldn't quit.  Finally I unpacked my sleeping bag and laid back down.  I started debating taking a zero in my tent for a while.  At 12:30 I gave up and packed up in the driving rain.  I decided I would make it to the next shelter four miles away and reassess.  

When I got to the shelter a trail maintainer named Chris/Cruise was there tidying up.  He thru hiked the AT in 2006 and most of the PCT a few years later.  He asked if I wanted a drink and held up a box of Franzia he packed out.  I sat and had a drink with him chatting until about 3:00.  I decided I needed to make it to the Partnership shelter ten miles away so I could get to town tomorrow.

I hiked the last ten miles non-stop and got in just before 7:00.  Much of the trail had turned into a small stream where the water was ankle deep in many places.  The rest of the trail was equally deep mud.  My rain gear completely wetted out and I was soaked to the bone.  The temperature never rose over 45 degrees.  The 20mph wind gusts were constantly slapping me with more rain; robbing me of body heat and forward momentum. Today was the first day where I've been truly miserable on the trail.  There is something about being uncontrollably saturated with no end in sight that is incredibly frustrating.

I got to the shelter and heard several people talking, but the shelter appeared empty.  It turns out this shelter is two stories.  I climbed the ladder to find seven other hikers taking refuge.  The general consensus seems to be everyone is heading to town tomorrow.  Hopefully there are enough places for everyone to stay.  The forecast is calling for rain all day again tomorrow and possibly into Tuesday.  After four days of rain I need a break for my sanity.