INTO CASCADE LOCKS
PCT DAY 125: Mile 2128.3 – Mile 2144.4
Tuesday August 16, 2016: 16.1 Miles (25.8km)
DISPATCH FROM THE TRAIL
The campsite I was in was located in quite deep forest and I did not have the rainfly on the tent. As the large moon got higher in the sky it was like someone had turned a streetlight on. It did not stop me from sleeping but made it interesting each time I woke up.
I was on trail by about 6am and not far along the trail I came across the first small waterfall which was a harbinger of what was to come. There was a large waterfall before coming across the well photographed tunnel falls. You actually walk through a rock tunnel behind the waterfall, it feels really quite odd. Again hats off to the trail makers for the superb job they have done in putting the trail in. The trail continued along the creek with Upper Punchbowl Falls, followed by Lower Punchbowl Falls. The pools around the falls were so clear and there were further smaller falls as you followed the creek down the valley.
I walked the last 3 miles with a guy from Bellingham in Washington. He is also a teacher and works at an alternative school, set up by a group of outward bound instructors. He has been off work travelling through Iceland, Spain and Europe.
Made it to Cascade Locks and the end of Oregon. Once in town we stopped at the first food outlet for a burger and milkshake. I then found a motel, had a shower, picked up my resupply, washed my pack and got some laundry done. Who said you have a relaxing time in town.
I went out to see if I could hunt down a pizza and ran into Smiles and Lid who were trying to find the Cascade Locks Brewery. So I joined them for a beer. The first beer is free for thru-hikers. People pay for a beer and are given a coaster to write a message on, which is kind of neat. Mine said keep on truckin’ to the God’s! Jnek and Eric. Thank You, Jnek and Eric, the beer went down well.
Back at the hotel I am watching some beach volleyball from Rio, the first bit of the Olympics I have seen. And it’s back to the trail tomorrow – crossing the Bridge of the God’s into Washington.
CORKY – OFF THE PCT
I saw my Sydney orthopaedic surgeon this morning. Now that he had a full history of the progress of injury he was a bit undecided about surgery. Based on the scans from last week he favoured surgery. The fracture is healing only slightly out of alignment and it would have meant re-braking the bone in order to pin it. Considering that I am now 5 weeks post accident and 4 weeks of non-weight bearing my healing would be set back for another 6 weeks. The surgery should have happened earlier but I was tardy about getting the follow-up.
So he ordered more scans before deciding. Based on these results he was happy with the position of the ankle and recommended against surgery. It is not often a surgeon does not recommend surgery! So I am happy about that.
He recommended physiotherapy starting next week and to continue to increase weight-bearing to pain threshold. I will need to see him again in 3 weeks and hopefully will be cleared to resume our travels. However he thinks it will be about 12 months or longer before I can be running again. Not happy about this.
As there is no prospect of me returning to the PCT this year I will be signing off from this blog for now.