So of course when it was all said and done, after such a big under taking, we had to do some very major celebrating.
After the border and the official terminus of the Pacific Crest Trail, there were 8 more miles to hike into Canada before a road where we could get a ride. We got picked up at the end by a hiker that had done the Sierras with the Sobohobos, Lady LNT who lived nearby in Washington and rented a 12 person van to pick us up. Grinder couldn’t come across the border because his passport had expired which would cause some problems coming back into the U.S. So he would backtrack a total of about 30 miles where we could drive and pick him up. The day after finishing the guys all rented a car to go pick up grinder at Harts Pass and the girls went to Seattle to set everything up there which included getting our sweet rooms at the Marriott in downtown Seattle and picking everyone up “outfits” at a thrift store to change in to.
We had a real long drive to pick up a grinder (a total of about 8.5 hours in the car roundtrip) due to the slow windy mountain roads amd a particularly precarious cliffside drive for about 15 miles at the end that took about 45 minutes each way.
And once we were ALL officially done with the hike, it was time to head back to Seattle and get things started!
You know a night is going to be good when it starts with you walking into a hotel lobby without your pants on. Since we were doing laundry, all I had to wear on bottom was my long underwear which is how I walks into the Marriott. I think we alarmed the staff a little but it was all ok once they saw we actually had a room and weren’t just homeless people walking in. So you’d think after that it would be good to change into some normal clothes that the girls had picked up for us… Well normal by hiker standards at least. We definitely looked pretty ridiculous, but it worked and we were loving it. So once we changed and had some beers and wine in the rooms (the wine actually came complimentary with one of the rooms. We were really living the good life), we hit the town.
Unfortunately, since it was a Tuesday night, there was not much going on, but we were enthusiastic enough and in the right spirit to bring the party with us! We went bar hopping checking out different places but the best place was the one we went to last and ended up closing down. It was a pool hall with a dance floor and dj who was doing a request night, and most importantly the drink special was happy hour all night.
There’s no way I could possibly describe the night and do it justice, but luckily I took plenty of video so when I get a chance they will be uploaded. The major themes of the night though, to give an idea, were mainly 80’s with some gangster rap at the end. All I can day now though is that it was one of the most fun nights I’ve had in a very long time. It was a nice extra to have people ask us where the costume party was or if we were an acting troupe.
We closed the bar at 3am and headed back to the Marriott where we hung out some more and had pizza.
It’s true what they say, “you can take the hiker off the trail, but you can’t take the trail out of the hiker!” Despite all the festivities, we were nearly all up by 8:30 without alarms, with our biological clocks and metabolisms still finely tuned for the trail. It was a nice bonus to be able to take advantage of the Marriott concierge lounge with their full breakfast, tv, and selection of newspapers.
But after all the fun is when the goodbyes had to start and the first to go was Swiss Miss as the rest of us began our trip south, first stop, Portland.