Friday, August 9, 2019


Here are Dick's updates. Many of you are asking how he's doing. In the meantime, I am enjoying my stay here and involved in so many activities. Plus, the added bonus of being with Maggie now and then. 

July 29, 2019 - 9:13 p.m.

Did 29 miles today. Have to do more miles because water is scarce. I’m in my tent texting you. Still a bad phone connection. I head for Crater Lake tomorrow. Hope we can talk. Love you more than mountains.

July 30 - 7:08 p.m.

Made it to Crater Lake, got a shower and will get a bite to eat after doing laundry. Signal still bad here so using their wifi. Will pick up my resupply box in the a.m. and I’ll check to see if there’s a pay phone so I can call you. This place is a ZOO. I stayed in a campsite with 35+ tents. The park has no plan to deal with all these hikers! Everyone is fighting over 75 cent showers that last 4 minutes, and the washers are filthy - the ones that work. Typical National park food - high priced and low quality. After breakfast in the morning I think I’ll work on my foot and haul ass. Oregon is much easier walking so far - much flatter than California. I’m getting in 27 to 29 mile days. If my foot was better it would be 30+ days. Although there is lots of volcanic rock, little water sources, thick mosquito population and very hot. The good news is the smoke has cleared.

July 31 - 6:07 a.m.

Found a pay phone. I’ll call you when you’re up. Got up early and went down to the other campground and found clean FREE showers with no time limit. Wonderful. I’ll be leaving this morning and walking the RIM Trail back to the PCT.

Here’s the foot story. The little bastard rat that chewed my gear is what caused it all! After tying my shoe lace back together, it was too tight, which irritated the top of my foot up into my ankle. The Crater Lake store carried few supplies. Another hiker gave me four Vitamin I. She said she carried too much. The cashier at the store went out to his truck and brought back a brand new pair of boot laces. Old guys rock - Trail Magic! I bought some Icy Hot and it has helped. 
I now keep my pack inside my tent with me and not in the vestibule part. I sleep with my feet elevated on the pack which also seems to be helping. I “RIME” my foot as much as I can (Rest, ice, milkshake and elevate). Can you believe it - Crater Lake has NO milkshakes! I think they should lose their park status for that.

I’ve been hiking in a “bubble” with a great group of kids from all over the world.
I think there must be a factory in Scandinavia that makes nice people. These kids are also very smart and speak better English than 95% of Americans.
Back in Dunsmuir, as I stepped out onto the trail, I fell over the gate. This young girl in the bubble ran over to make sure I was okay. I know they were all thinking, “this old man thinks he’s going to walk the trail and he can’t even get out of the starting gate". Later they all passed me using my umbrella and all thought that was quite funny. They now call me “Umbrella Man” and think I fly like Mary Poppins. Two weeks later they are a day behind me. 

Crater Lake is so deep blue! Unfortunately, the actual PCT was closed near the park because of mountain lion activity. I was going to go through anyway because I’ve always wanted to see one in the wild, but the Rim Trail that goes around the lake is awesome so I didn’t mind the reroute. The color of this lake is so amazing that I kept stopping every now and then to just stare at it. I was told the trail has long stretches with no water but a south bounder told me there are some water caches with gallons galore.

August 1 - Noon - Day 14 on the trail, 358 miles so far!

Everyone else is talking on their phones. I don’t know why we can’t!

From now on I will refer to rodent bastards as FRB’s. I just discovered bigger tent damages! He also chewed the hem and it is beginning to rip up from the bottom. Luckily I brought a lot of gorilla tape and it has stopped the ripping for now. I hope it will last the hike if I don’t get a heavy wind. So upset about it.  I hope there is some California rat constipated from eating rip-stop nylon! 

August 2nd - Shelter Cove RV Resort

A section of the PCT was closed, probably due to an old fire maybe. The reroute funnels all PCT hikers right by this RV Resort. Only $10 to camp here and they have wifi. I took advantage of a hot shower and FOOD, plus I could charge my phone.
I sent a video of a dip I took in a lake today. That was another great thing about the reroute, it went by lots of beautiful lakes. (If you want to see this video ask Gaila to send it to you.)

The girl that waited on me at breakfast just started working here today. She and her boyfriend bought a RV and are working their way around the country. Sound familiar? This is a great place and everyone is so friendly. We must stay here with the motorhome sometime. 
Headed out you more than milkshakes!

August 4 - 2 p.m.

Contacted Hilleberg to see if they could provide me with a repair kit for my tent.
22 miles so far today. Very hot but foot doing well. I’m thinking it was the tied together shoelace chewed by the FRB!!  

8 p.m.

Stopped raining but I still hear thunder in the distance - camped for the night. 

When I hit the cut-off to Elk Lake Lodge today it started to rain and even some marble size hail. Everyone wanted my umbrella. Met a couple hiking in light t-shirts who wished they had one. I told them I’d sell mine to them for $500. They asked if I took Visa. I said, “No, that’s the cash price.” 
Most of my “bubble” went down to the lodge and into the towns of Bend or Sisters. My resupply box is waiting for me at Big Lake Youth Camp so I’m staying on trail. I wonder if I’ll see them again. 
I lost my hat yesterday. I don’t wear it when I use my umbrella so I had stuck it in my pack and somehow it fell out. Fortunately, a guy (trail name Butterfly Catcher) recognized it as mine. I’m the only one out here who wears one like this. I’m not sure how he ever found me. I was off trail up in the woods by a lake having dinner. I only realized my hat was missing for about 10 minutes and I was kicking myself when he shows up with it!! I’m so thankful to have it back. I use it a lot. The flaps hang down and discourage the mosquitoes. It might be ugly, but it’s very protective from sun and bugs.

That night I set up on a bald (hiking term for treeless, rocky summit). It was thundering and everyone was wondering what to do. I was already pounding stakes. Then the sky started falling. I climbed into my tent and they all hauled ass for tree cover. Snickers and Stevie Wonder said if they didn’t see me the next day they would know I was toast!!

August 6

I’ve been hiking with Gaper the last couple of days. A great kid. He’s going off trail for a couple of days but will probably catch me. He moves fast.
I timed Big Lake Youth Camp perfectly. I got up at 4 a.m. and arrived before the rush. Had a shower, did my laundry, had breakfast and picked up my resupply box all before 9 a.m.  The 10 miles of trail before Big Lake was lava rock and nasty - ankle twisting, boot shredding torture. I can’t believe how bad the burn is in this area - Apocalyptic!! 


Decided to not stay the night. I’m ready to move on. Made contact with Hilleberg and they are shipping to Cascade Locks a tent stuff bag (mine ripped out this morning) as well as a repair kit for my tent.

August 7 - 6:06 a.m.

Passed mile marker 2000 yesterday! All is well.

(....and that's the last I heard from him except his notifications from the InReach satellite communicator letting me know he's ok. I am so thankful he has this now.)


  1. Dick - what a trooper you are! The lake is unbelievably blue! and I think I see the reflection of your trekking poles in one of your pics? I use mine every day too. hugs and keep on smilin' my dear! Jean

  2. Lovin the updates. Beautiful photos. Making very good time. What a journey!! Counting the miles for sure now....😊