Mile 1534 to 1557
I wake to the sound of a galloping horse, which turns out to be Deadfall Lake slapping my shore with wind blown waves. I take my sweet time making coffee and gathering my things. I have 23 miles to cover, much of it flat and down hill. Terri is leaving home after work so I do not expect her at Highway 3 until late. About 8:00pm by my calculations.
As I meander I keep seeing Mount Shasta poking its bald frosted head in my scenery. It reminds me of a time I asked Daniel to take a few pictures of Shasta and he ended up taking something on the order of 400, completely wiping out my camera battery. I am beginning to understand the problem. In this part of California no matter what you try to take a picture of, Mount Shasta will shamelessly photo bomb it.
During the entire day of walking I only encounter one other hiker. She is an exhausted southbound solo section hiker carrying more than twice my load. Her pack looks like something I might carry as a guide on a typical Fitpacking trip, but at this moment cannot comprehend. I wish her well and keep moving. Terri has always had to wait for me at trailheads. Today it will be my turn. I hope to sleep a few hours before she arrives.
As I reach Highway 3 there are several cars parked on the shoulder. The one attached to a boat has its hood open with three men leaning in, scratching their heads. It reminds me of every boat trip we ever took with my Uncle Bob or brother in-law Mike. Something mechanical always demands the attention of someone mechanical. I notice the last car in the lineup is a Honda Pilot, very similar to ours. I ask a woman standing nearby “Is that your Pilot?” She replies, “No, that is your wife waiting for you.” Now I was not fooled into thinking I am married to a Honda Pilot, but it did reveal I am in fact a fool. How did I get the pickup time so wrong? I have been meandering thinking I am three hours early, when I am over an hour late. Terri is more forgiving of me than I am of myself.
In Weed we stop for old fashioned milkshakes and food. Terri drives me home, probably wishing the car windows were rolled down.