It was just as dark in that forest in the morning as it was the previous evening. We jumped back on trail and meandered our way through the dense wood until we popped out on a slope which showed us that we were among a valley. The weather was quite miserable, but didn’t dampen our spirits too much as we marched up a long switch back climb to a ridgeline summit.
Up there we had lunch, though the clouds moved in on us shrouding the views of barren rocky mountains around us. There was a distinct chill in the air which drove us to press onwards along rock fall slopes towards Harts Pass, the last dirt road of the PCT. Along the way the clouds rose allowing us awesome sights of the valleys and snow capped mountains that we walked among. Around each corner was a new feast for our eyes, and the feeling of a journeys end was starting to close in on us.
At Harts Pass we enjoyed a little break at the guard station before hiking on up its heath like hills. We were aiming for Windy Pass for camp which would put us with less than 30 miles to the Canadian border. We found a lovely spot sheltered among some trees, and Will managed to somehow get a decent fire going with the damp wood around us. Huddled around that warmth, we all discussed our feelings on the impending end. General consensus was that of mixed emotions. We were sad to soon be leaving the lives we had led for 6 months and the beautiful nature that surrounded it, but home comforts were calling all of us on. Nonetheless, tomorrow would be our last full PCT day setting us 3 miles from the goal, so we went to bed knowing that we’d make the most of it no matter what.