Even though the sun leaked through the canopy of the trees, the morning was cold. We broke our rule. We were not only wearing our down jackets as we started to hike but our rain jackets and gloves, and we would not remove them until mid-morning. Typically, you have to remove them before you start sweating, but the cold air chilled us to the core.
The miles today climbed less but our elevation came all at once. We had one big climb, and once we reached the top we treated ourselves to lunch. Fifteen miles in, but the hardest part of our day was finished. We powered up the hill. Each time we stopped mosquitoes would begin to swarm and we would force ourselves to keep moving. Once at the top we sat down for a short lunch. We took our shoes and socks off to let our feet dry out, and then started on our way down to Marshall Pass trailhead. As we followed the trail round, patches of snow began to cover our path. Luckily, we could avoid some and the ones that were unavoidable we could just take a couple of steps and find dry ground. When we reached the trailhead, we saw Charlie and Hannah!
We both were planning to camp at the same spot so we told them we would meet them up trail after we filtered some water. The mosquitoes were still bad, maybe worse. We filtered quickly and started up the ascent to camp. The campsite that was reported on our maps was flooded and surrounded by snow, so we dropped back down trail a bit to the road where there was evidence of an old mine. What mattered to us was that it was flat and dry. We set up camp, and then we all sat together to enjoy dinner. We had nine miles till Monarch Pass, so an early morning was planned.
Garbelly & Critter