Day 159 – The Last Town

September 16th

Five miles and we made it to the shuttle with plenty of time to spare. 45 minutes until we had a ride into Steheiken!

 Before the shuttle arrived a dozen hikers had hobbled out of the woods to wait for a ride. A separate bus from a nearby ranch pulled up and let out dozens of Sierra Club hikers. The people poured out, along with Hummingbird, Teflom, and Rainbow! They had stayed at the ranch the previous night.

With only a few minutes to catch up we tried to put together some basic plans for meeting with each other again at Manning Park or maybe Vancouver. We chatted in a hurry until our shuttled arrived and the driver called us to come on board.

It was a slow ride down a dirt road. Everyone was extremely excited when we pulled up to the bakery outside of town and the driver let us out for a quick splurge!

Bushtit and I spent nearly 40 bucks on pastries and coffee. We got everything to go and ate on the bus during the last few miles to town.

Once in town it was the same routine. We finished our food before laundry and showers and post office stuff.  The hikers took up a couple of picnic tables on the far end of the resort. The lake and mountains were beautiful. Steheiken seems like a great vacation spot for outdoor activities.

Few hikers funneled in and out throughout the day, but we did see Runaway and Hot Mess! Those two had started in Campo on the same day as us and we had seen them regularly until Northern California. It was great to catch up with them about the last couple of months.

The last shuttle took us and several other hikers out to the trail at 6pm. The driver was from Texas and had been a horseback PCT traveler in previous years. He gave us a tour on the drive back and even took us on a quick detour to see Rainbow Falls at a hiker’s request!

Everyone settled in to camp at the Ranger Station the shuttle had dropped us off at. Once we were set for the evening we gathered at a picnic table with the other hikers around. We chatted and shared stories with other hikers for possibly the last gathering in the trail. 80 miles to Canada is all that remains. A few more nights and we will be at the northern terminus. We’re starting to say goodbye to our friends.

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