6394 ft of climbing
PNT Mile 113
We did even more climbing today plus some bonus miles.
We also reach the 100 mile mark and entered the 10 Lakes National Scenic Area.
We got to the top of Mt Wam (7203 ft) at lunchtime. There is an old fire lookout here built in 1931. The Forest Service had been renting it out for $20 per night. They took it off the rental list and are now renovating it. It will be on a first come first serve basis. The view is incredible.
From Mt Wam we could see the lookout on Stahl Peak 5 miles away. That one is off a .8 mile, 600 ft side trail and the view is even better. There is no water at or between these. I was pretty sure I had enough water for the night and I decided if it looked inviting I would stay the night at Stahl Peak making a longer day tomorrow. When we got there it was occupied by a couple who were obviously not interested in sharing. Emma and Chris were going on anyway so I joined them. It was still worth the effort to hike up for the 360 degree view.
It had rained earlier but stopped just in time for our side trip up Stahl Peak. Once we got back down the rain started again and never stopped for long for the rest of the day. We missed a turn (it had a PNT marker that we didn’t see) and descended 3/4 of a mile before realizing our error. More climbing.
We arrived at Bluebird Lake to the wonderful sight of a campfire. 3 cousins were on an adventure together and called out to us to warm up. The rain almost stopped while we set up our tents. We ate around the fire. I’m sure I’ve never before stood under an umbrella next to a fire. After I went back to my tent it took forever for my cold, wet, wrinkled feet to come back to life.
“It always works out” is one of the things I’ve learned from hiking. I was disappointed not to have been able to stay at the lookout. It was for the best. I’m glad I’m here, 5 hard miles further down the trail.