Day nine (mile 2625.3-2650.4)

Day Nine
5 September 2016
Mile 2625.3-2650.4
Day total 25.1
Tally 188.8 miles
Total up/down: +4270/-6530ft
Camp: Castle Creek passed Monument 78
LL: 49.000288, -120.802120

Today we reached Monument 78, the official US-Canadian border marker.  At the border, the rainy clouds in Washington stopped right at the peak along the clear cut marking the border. Canada was sunny and warm compared to the cold, wet and windy Washington we left behind. The moment was surreal. The old monument has been sealed closed since last year, and the trail register was simply sitting out in a dry bag. We have no idea why it was sealed. Though we also found a grocery bag filled with weed, and that reminded us that last year there was also a lot of weed stashed in the monument with the completion register. I can easily imagine the monument being sealed to prevent the storage of illegal drugs. Technically weed is legal in both Washington and BC, Canada. However it is not legal to cross the border with it. Regardless, it feels really strange to officially be here, to have completed the trail on foot as I intended last summer. It is a strange thing to actually be finished now.

Today we met a woman named Cougar. She started the PCT last year too. She caught back up to us at the northern terminus and we all shared the moment of being partial PCT 2015’ers and 2016’ers. Cougar had a longer distance than us this year, but I can still understand having the end of the trail looming over like dark cloud until this glorious moment of true completion. Something really incredible about our encounter with Cougar is that she had a copy of Seawolf by Jack London that she picked up in White Pass. Last summer we were all reading Seawolf together on trail and had found it in book form at White Pass. It could be the same one!

Overall today was a relatively easy last day, despite the abundance of downhill miles. It was also a beautiful day! And we saw numerous falcons soaring the valleys. After our terminus party part two, we walked to the camp 3/10 mile further. We found a guy named Brandon with a big fire and a friendly dog named Maya. Brandon was an interesting guy, but it was the first night in a while where I went to bed completely dry and warm!

I am thoroughly exhausted and ready for a good night’s sleep.

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