Day 22: The Dinsmore’s

October 2nd; Zero Miles Sometimes there are trail angels that really go above and beyond, people who have essentially devoted their lives to thru-hikers. The Dinsmores in Baring, WA are perfect examples, and there license plates say it all: ” PCT Dad” and “PCT Mom.” In the front law of their house they have a huge sign carved in wood that reads “The Dinsmores Hiker Haven,” behind their home they’ve got a big building used mainly for storage, garbage, and workshop space. They took us in to one of the sections towards the left where there was a huge shelf against the wall amongst all the clutter filled willed with packages they were holding for hikers. They let us pick up our stuff akdthen showed us to the hiker hostel area which was the farthest left compartment of this garage building. The space foe hikers was perfect and with tons
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Day 18: The Perfect Formula for a Vortex Zero

September 28th; Zero miles This entry will start back where I had left off in the hike before being cut off from civilization. The last thing that happened was that the sobohobos and I stumbled into The Howard Johnson in Snoqualmie, WA, which is basically just a ski resort area, after two consecutive, very rough zeros. Def: a Vortex Zero is a “zero” (when you hike zero miles for the day) that is unplanned. I.e. You get sucked in. 1) Bad weather: when we woke up in the morning, you could barely see past the parking lot in front of the hotel. Not very inviting for a day of hiking. 2) A tough, late hike the day before: we all got in either right before or after dark. We were exhausted and sore from the 60 miles in 2 days we had done. My achilles tendons were feeling really tender
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Finishing up a thru-hike

On October 11th, the Sobohobos and I made it to the Canadian border finishing our thru-hikes (Gangles, Steiner, and T-bone still have 400 miles in the south still to finish, but they’re almost there!).  So after a month and a day for me, and an average of 5 months for the others, it’s time to pack up and head home.  Finishing a thru-hike can be a very bittersweet experience. You spend  a very extended period of time living a totally different kind of life then what you’re used to in the “real world,” where food, lodging, hygiene, routine are all flipped upside down. The end, though, can be tough, as your body starts to break down, adopting what’s known in thru-hiker circles as the “hiker hobble.” We also had to contend with some increasingly cold weather at the end with some frost and snow coupled with some rain.  When you
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