I've had a much needed and very refreshing break here in Salem, taking care of some business and relaxing with family and friends. At the same time, I'm really missing being on the Pacific Crest Trail, and I'm really looking forward to the train ride back to Fresno, California so I can find my way back to Vermillion Valley Resort and get back on the trail at PCT Mile 877.
My train ticket says that I leave the Salem, Oregon Amtrak Station on the Southbound Coast Starlight at 3:37 pm on Saturday. In Sacramento, I take a short bus ride to Stockton, then back on another train and continue to Fresno.
Once I get there, I'll ride the Fresno City Bus to Highway 168, then hitch a ride back to Tomas Eddision Lake and the Vermillion Valley Resort. I can wait for the ferry or hike 5 miles to the far side of the lake, then hike the 2 mile side trail back to where I left the PCT back on June 23rd.
I've been checking the wild fire reports, and it looks as though things are in a little better shape than when I left the trail. I have not heard how the smoke is doing ... it was very smokey when I got off the trail there at VVR.
A fire is affecting Section M from Bucks Lake Wilderness to Highway 70 at Beldon, and another fire is affecting Section N in Lassen Forest from Highway 70 to Highway 36. It will take me a while to get that far North, so by the time I get there, the trail should be open again, or at least the herd will be there and I should be able to get better reports on the trail conditions.
Thanks to everyone that is following the blog, and I'm looking forward to seeing many of you in Sisters, Oregon in December! If you haven't already made your plans to come to Sisters, don't delay. Send me an e-mail with the dates you'd like to come and the number of people coming so I can reserve your space. There are still several dates available, but you need to let me know your plans as soon as you can. My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing from you. Also visit YTB to compare airline ticket prices and rental car rates. The airport at Redmond, Oregon (RDM) is 30 minutes from Sisters, and I'll be providing free shuttle service to the airport.
And remember, I won't be near a computer while I'm on the next section of the trail, so it might be a week or more until my next up-date on the blog. I always appreciate your prayers and I love to read comments, e-mails and text messages on my cellphone, so please keep all of those coming my way!