For Trip 9, trip leader Derek reports:

“Today, eight of us started on the trail from Snoqualmie Pass to Stevens Pass. Originally, we planned on hiking on the John Muir Trail in California, but with record snow fall (like 700 inches), the snow melt has caused the rivers and creeks to swell, making it unsafe to cross. (In fact, several have died already this season after falling in various creeks and rivers, and the weight of the snow incapacitated some regular bridges). Safety first, so here we are in Washington.

“This crew has hiked together several times now; we are well oiled and enjoy hiking together.

“Made it to camp by 3 p.m.; 7-mile day. Everyone hiked well, which is great given we had nine days of food on our backs.

“We’re at Riley Lake. Going to take a dip in a few and relax. A lot of trail runners today.

“Today we saw a naked bear. Couldn’t believe our eyes (we knew it was a bear because he had a bear ass). We made a lot of noise and assumed he ran from us once he noticed he was naked and was embarrassed.

“Not a lot of bugs hiking up. But, there are some bugs here at camp. No bears though.”

Trip 9 is not a llama-supported hike.

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