The first thing we did when we awoke was check the skies and the horizon. The sky was a clear blue and the horizon was tinged in a warm sun rise light, today was going to be a good day. The reason for these checks was to ensure that as we did Knife’s Edge ridge this morning we were going to have stunning views and that was certainly the case.
About half a mile from where we had camped we began the steep climb along an alternative route up Old Snowy. Once on Snowy’s ridge, our eyes widened and jaws dropped. 360 views slammed into our retinas as the sun peaked up over the Cascades. I can’t even begin to describe the scene, there was just far too much beauty in the gnarled and jagged ranges around us.
We then descended a thin trail on either side of which were sheer drops. Our feet skidded and slid on the loose scree under foot but the whole way down we exclaimed at every detail. The trail stuck to this knife edge for the entirety of the the ridges length before broadening and dipping off away from Mt Rainier. Once among the meadows of the foothills, we took a break to reflect on just how amazing that experience was. A true highlight of the PCT.
We now plunged into the valley forests with the aim of making good ground as the days next big thing was to reach White Pass where we would pick up a resupply package from the gas station. It was a long green tunnel walk with gradual but extended climbs to exposed ridge lines and down to the forests once more. We smashed it though, and soon found ourselves approaching the junction from which White Pass was only half a mile.
Here however, was some unexpected trail magic. Chilli, apples, juice and baked goods found their way into our bellies before a shuttle came by to drop us off at the gas station. The station had a good general store and cafe attached to it, and with package in hand we made the most of charging points and food. It was a hub for passing hikers, many of whom we knew and eventually Will, Audrey and Sour Patch turned up. None of us really wanted to leave its comforts that evening so we decided, like pretty much all hikers, to camp in its grounds out back.