PCT DAY 11: Thursday July 6, 2017
Mile 1904.1 – Mile 1922.6 + 2 miles on Shelter Cove Trail
20.5 miles (32.8km)
It was hard to leave Shelter Cove this morning. Leaving everyday comforts, knowing we will likely have some more snowy traverses in the next few days before we reach Sentiam Pass.
However we were rested and I was excited to see the lakes ahead which Hammer talked about. Our packs fully loaded with food we left before 6am with a horde of mosquitos for company.
The view of Odell Lake from a lookout off the PCT was too good to pass by. We stopped at the lookout and had breakfast, finishing the last of the delicious fruit Jim had brough for us yesterday. The lake below was dotted with fishing boats drifting about slowly. It looked idyllic. Definitely a spot to return to.
It was lovely walking in the cool of the morning with one happy bird singing in the surrounding forest. And the sight of one of my favourite flowers of the PCT just about made my morning . There were several patches of bear grass, the first we’ve seen on this hike.
We soon reached the three Rosary Lakes, each was just as stunning as Hammer had described. Being early, not a ripple disturbed the surface of their crystal clear water. All three lakes have great campsites and would be fantastic to visit when the mozzie season is over.
After leaving the lakes we hiked through lush green forest with majestic looking pines. We took a short detour off the PCT to visit the Maiden Peak Shelter, a winter backcountry ski shelter. Reminded us of the many huts we’ve stayed in on our cross-country ski trips in the Snowy Mountains.
Temperature was starting to rise and we could hear the wind whistling in the tree canopy above but not a whisper of wind penetrated to the ground.
It was hard work, hiking uphill. But we were rewarded with views of the Rosary Lakes, edge of Odell Lake and snow capped Diamond Peak below us.
About 4 miles out from Charlton Lake we started to encounter patches of snow. The snow was slippery but not overly difficult to navigate as it was beginning to break up. We reached Charlton Lake just after 4pm and thought we’d stop by to have a look. It looked so beautiful we decided to stay. We pitched our tent right by the lake and soaked our pounded feet in the cool water of the lake There is a light cooling breeze blowing through the tent as I lie here writing this. The sweaty labour of today is almost forgotten – a truly wonderful day.