JUL / AUG Updates

Group Camping Trip to Silent Lake Provincial Park

Beach is awesome for swimming any time of day or night. Love this beach.

We hit Silent Lake Provincial Park north of Peterborough for a two-night stint with a group. My two kids (Chantal and Noah) and Heidi came with her Daughter Chloe and her GF KJ. My friend Michelle came with her dog Lucy and Heidi’s friend Renyolds also came. We had a dry first night in our tents.

Just dumping stuff at Heidi’s campsite that was in between the parking lot and our site which was farther in. I love the walk in campsites but hauling stuff to and from once it’s over is not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. When doing it… you wonder why you picked these sites… but at Silent Lake they are close to the beach and a quick minute thirty to walk there.
I did have help lugging crap to our campsite. Next time we will just backpack in. Chantal had an arm free to record it looks like.

The second day we went for just a little hike and after that closer, to dinner, the rain started and didn’t let up till the next morning which forced people into tents and some left for a dry bed. It was not a great experience to test out gear with all the people. We did try some food a little and felt another trip with just the 3 of us would be better so Heidi and Chantal and myself can each just bring our own gear and set up ourselves and cook and clean up after ourselves… So we booked another night down the road for a return to Silent Lake and we will hope Chantal can get the time off work to come. Overall our tent “The Bear Hotpocket” as we call it did pretty good with all the rain.

Here is the locations we stayed. The Group spot for the post above and the next post below is shown as the “Spot w/Heidi” on the map of Silent Lake

Going Back To Hike Silent Lake / 16km Loop

Dan’s little camping cook set up with his little stove that goes on top of the fuel canister. Chantal has the better MSR pocket stove. Mine is the $19CAD AliExpress one from China.

Our second trip to Silent Lake Provincial Park turned out pretty good. Chantal could not come so it was just Heidi and myself and we packed like the PCT and we each set up our tent by ourselves and set up camp. We also packed some hiker food. I made some Ramen and put some bacon jerky on top which was quite nice. Heidi made a Ramen Bomb with instant potatoes and she added pepperoni sticks into it I believe. I had a bite and it was pretty good also.

In the morning, we made some oatmeal with some dehydrated apples and berries and also took advantage of the nice lake to go for a swim.

Ramen Bomb with Gluten-free Ramen, Instant potatoes, pepperoni pepperettes, and some Frito chips for crunch.

The next morning we both packed up camp after heating up some instant oatmeal and added some dehydrated strawberries and apple slices, and loaded our packs, and set off for the 16km loop around Silent Lake.

Our Tent is a 3 person MSR tent on the left above and Heidi’s which is a 2 person MSR tent on the right. I gave her some earplugs so she wouldn’t hear me snore.
7.5 miles is 12 Km’s

Was pretty good with using my Garmin watch. There was a tiny part, I forgot to track. I’ll break down more on some screens below. All these metrics are for me (Dan). You will see that we recorded it in miles since I was curious how many miles per hour I walked. The total pace was around 30 min miles.

You will see that we didn’t make it all the way around. More on that later. We started our hike at the beach where the walk-in campgrounds are and went around the lake clockwise. There is way more elevation up and downs for the first part of the trail as you can see below. The whole trail has up and downs… but the first part has more dramatic up and downs. We started early in the morning and in the afternoon the temperature rose naturally.

Backstory: in 2014, the kids and myself hiked this with hardly any water and we took lots of rest each hour and felt this hike was not too bad. LOL, I hiked it with my 30-year-old Nike Aqua Socks without any blister issues. Then last year I went for a hike with Heidi around the lake and the two days before the hike I didn’t really drink water and didn’t have that much on the hike. I had about 2 liters that I brought. I was dehydrated and walked at a pretty fast pace with not too many stops. I bonked. I had my apple watch and going up the hills I could feel my heart pounding and my brain was telling my body that I needed to catch my breath at the top of the hills. Obviously, I was out of shape and older at this stage in my life carrying extra pounds. By the time we got to about the 12km mark of the 16… my legs started cramping and I could not walk. I had to lie down at the side of the trail which was actually near the road and wait for Heidi to hike about 20min on the road to go get the car.

So this trip was the second time hiking Silent Lake with Heidi and I drank more water and had more. Honestly… I would say I’m in the same shape as before but the extra water helped. I still bonked… and more about that later below.

I have no idea how to read the blue graph below but the red one shows my heart rate pretty good in the challenging section and worse as the hike goes on. One thing to point out is that we didn’t stop too much and about 30 mins for lunch. We both had backpacks on. Mine was pretty heavy with about 75% of PCT weight but way more than a normal daypack. I could reach without taking off the pack one 1-liter water bottle but that was empty about an hour from lunch. I think the heartbeat rising was due to being more dehydrated as I went. At lunch and taking off the pack, I had sipped from a new water bottle but with the shorter lunch of 30 min the water didn’t absorb and I wasn’t guzzling the water either. I had more water on this hike but I think more rest stops for me were needed. Heidi was trailblazing along at a good pace. Around 70% of our distance… I needed to stop and catch my breath at the top of some hills. Lots of mosquitos so stopping was not fun. By the end of the hike, Heidi was about 5 minutes ahead.

Back to the map up a bit… remember the backstory of hiking a year before and stopping with cramping. That was after a beach when the trail comes back into the campground near the visitor gate. So for me… I was feeling pretty good. Sure I was sore but walking on flat ground was good. Going uphill just made me have to catch my breath at the top… which is no big deal really. But that beach had me wanting to go for a dip when I hit it. So with the temp in the high 80’s and getting to the cold lake… I got right in and my body was warm and then it was cold right away and that made my legs seize up. I got out of the water since I had to in pain and got my pack and my clothes and sat down on the ground…. after that my legs would not let me stand up without crazy charlie horses. So again… Heidi walked about 25 min’s to the car to come back to the first swimming beach to get me.

So average moving speed has me down for 2.5mph. We are going hiking again and will look at the metrics for that hike and see what’s up. For that hike… it will be a 12km hike with a backpack and we will see how I do.

Small Purchase

Dan didn’t use any PCT money for these purchases since they are more personal. The only one that might be added to his PCT kit might be the Beanie for the Sierra Mountains. He will test it out this Fall/Winter. Not sure if the PackLiner will be added to his kit as a storage bag. I think it was 20 or 30 liters.

Hiker Passes Away On Trail / Heat Exhastion

To learn more what happened and the dangers with the heat you can click here.

The Forest is On Fire

So sad that this year was a brutal start of the wildfire season in California. Last year was bad also and the fires touched different parts of the PCT that this year hikers had to go around with getting a hitchhike or simple road walk around it. Next year there will be closures and alternative routes if the PCTA can get agreements with landowners to bypass some of the places where there is a fire closure so the area can start to heal. The size of the fires was crazy especially the Dixie Fire. California closed all state and national parks leaving all the people trying to hike the PCT Southbound… it made them have to leave the trail and go home or move to other trails not affected to still get some hiking in. So sad for everyone who lost homes and also the devastating effect on wildlife and the land itself.

To dig deeper at the wildfires on the West Coast you can click here.


Murder Hornets Kind Of Freak Me Out | Bees Not So Much Unless They Don’t Like Me

Wasps and Bee’s kind of freak me out. In Washington there has been some action with the “Murder Hornets” and they scare the fuck out of me. They are hoping to find more nests before new Queens can be created. FML

An Asian giant hornet from Japan is held on a pin by Sven Spichiger, an entomologist with the Washington state Dept. of Agriculture, Monday, May 4, 2020, in Olympia, Wash. The insect, which has been found in Washington state, is the world’s largest hornet, and has been dubbed the “Murder Hornet” in reference to its appetite for honey bees, and a sting that can be fatal to some people.

Thanks To A New Patreon Member

Thanks, Sarah for being a “Follower” and helping Chantal with her 4-5 pairs of shoes. We will be going soon to fit her for her first pair that she will test out on training hikes. We will make a video of that process.

Timothy Olsen | FKT | Mind Boggling

On Thursday, July 22, 2021, ultrarunner Timothy Olson set a new men’s supported fastest known time (FKT) on the 2,653-mile Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) in the western United States. His time of 51 days, 16 hours, and 55 minutes bests the previous record set by Karel Sabbe of 52 days, 8 hours, and 25 minutes in 2016. Olson started at the PCT’s southern terminus on June 1, hiking and running an average of 51.3 miles per day.

Olson kept the his progress on the route hidden from public view for the majority of his run, in an effort to reduce the risk of COVID-19 and prevent large crowds from gathering on the trail. But less than one week before his finish, Olson’s team opened a public page, enabling his followers to track his progress in the final days of his attempt. The Fastest Known Time website administrators, however, have been tracking his efforts for the last nearly two months, occasionally posting updates.

A re-route on the official trail due to the Lionshead Fire closure in the Willamette and Mount Hood National Forests made Olson’s attempt somewhat unusual. However, Olson stated he wanted to “honor the PCT by covering as much of the full distance of the trail as well as run as much of the trail as possible and practical.” Working around the fire damage, Olson ran to the southern edge of the closure, back to the nearest trailhead, and was driven three hours to the closest entrance point of the northern side of the closure. From there, he traveled back onto the PCT, backward on the PCT until he reached the northern side of the fire closure, and then turned around and continued north. His re-route added 23 miles to the course, and the entire closure was 22 miles, so Olson did well honoring the official distance of the PCT. According to the Fastest Known Time website administrators, he’s negotiated a few other brief wildfire reroutes and closures along the way, all of which were observed by the administrators.

Olson was crewed by a small group of family and friends during his 51-plus-day endeavor, including his wife, Krista Olson. In one of the last Instagram posts before his finish, Olson posted a photo of Krista by his side, announcing she was 35 weeks pregnant with a rainbow baby, an infant conceived after losing a previous pregnancy to miscarriage. Stating how important this run was to him and his family, Olson wrote, “This is an immense and powerful time for my family, bringing us deep healing and transformation. I’m running the PCT in support of other families’ healing journeys [with infant loss].”

While painting inside I had this podcast below playing and such a wild human being. Was so sweet to follow his journey running the PCT from bottom to top and touching Canada.


I Still Want One Of These Huge Pine Cones | I Will Get It To Canada

When I find the right one… I’m going to strap it to the outside of my pack and haul it into the next town. Then I will box it up and mail it to someone I know in California to hold on to it. Then they can mail it up to the last town before the Canadian border so I can hike it the last 30 miles across the border and into Canada where I can then mail it home from Vancouver or bring it in my carry-on luggage when we fly home.

PCT Class Of 2022 | Book Your Day Off Work To Get A Permit

You can hit our blog post to learn more about the PCT Permits here. We are almost 1 year away from the November that we will sit at the computer and try and get the start date that we want for the following year.


Hiker Struck By Lightning In The Sierra Mountains

You can read the story from the FresnoBee here that is so sad about this hiker passing due to a fatal lightning strike.

What? | A Four Year Old | Huh? | No Way

Episode 5 | The Podcast | Trail Lingo

To hit the show notes of the episode (and see some of Chantal’s new Tattoo I was freaking out about and to listen… you can find the show notes here.


Timberline Lodge | I’ll Dream A Little Bit On Trail

The lunch buffet is from 7:30 am to 2 pm and is $25USD and we will camp near it and hopefully walk in and enjoy our fill. I’m sure we will be thinking about it the full two weeks walking towards it in Oregon since I’m thinking about it now typing this. You can hit the website here for more info.

Class of 2021 | Starting To Finish

Then there is these two. Started off with 2 teachers and her Daughter “Cheif” who also had a great vlog that I followed along. They were hiking crazy miles and it was great to see her Daughter hike it since it reminds me of Chantal hiking the PCT. Check out HRConthePCT on YouTube.

My Instagram is flooded with Class of 2021 hikers finishing and I love reading their posts and seeing them standing on the monument. Some are naked. Some are splashing their Tramily with beer and champagne and all hanging off of it. Come have ashes of loved ones to sprinkle since they carried them so they could hike the PCT with them. I can’t imagine that last mile walking towards the Northern Terminus. Such an incredible feat this year hiking through super crazy heat when afternoon temps touched 115 degrees and all the fires that knocked out some hikers. Some of the early starters got past the fires luckily and finished.

To see some of the class of 2021 and some that dare to get naked at the finishline you can hit the post here.


The Depot | Is Not Enough

Did some painting for a friend of a friend for a rental unit to bring in some extra cash. Over 60 hours of painting done which is nice. Hopefully, I can get some more side painting gigs and a good steady amount of dog walking this fall and winter.

Working nights at the depot putting in 22,000 steps and sweating like a madman is great. Only having like two nights a week working… I need more exercise now that the gym is a shitshow in the Covid Era. Need way more walks outside and that will pick up going into the fall and winter to get walking every day.

Heading Hiking & Camping In September | Charleston Lake Provincial Park

Details on this trip will be in the next update that you will find here.

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