Last night as I was ensconced in my hammock I saw yet another hiker come into the shelter area. Young, male, beard. I didn't recognize him but his voice sounded familiar when he introduced himself as Cookie. Soon a woman walked in and she also sounded familiar when she introduced herself as Chief. So this is the couple I've been hearing about in the last few days. Still eaves dropping I heard Cookie talking about when they started the trail and he said "We started on April 15th with a woman named Shelly". It finally hit me that this was the couple I had started with way back at Campo but then their names were, geeze, I don't remember now. Anyway I unzipped my hammock and leaned out, shouting "Hey it's me, Shelly!" A wonderful reunion ensued and we caught up on the last three and a half months, at least until the mosquitoes broke it up. It seems they have been steadily heading north and having fun along they way. They both are way thinner than when they started but still doing well. How fun.
In order to attempt to beat the heat this morning I was on the trail by 5:30 am, having packed my stuff and left without eating. At 7am I stopped to make coffee and eat breakfast and was just finishing up when Cookie and Chief came along and joined me. We yacked it up for an hour and then we walked together for the entire morning, only parting ways when we reached highway 140 at noon today. They to continue on to Crater Lake to meet family and I to Fish Lake Resort to pick up more food as I'm depleting my meals with my slow going pace. Still, with the two mile walk here I made 14 miles today. Not too bad in the heat, which, BTW, is hotter than Hades. It must be one hundred million degrees outside today. Or something close to that anyway.
Having company, good company, certainly made the miles roll by this morning. We actually have the same pace but I can't keep it up all day long like they can. Still, it was quite enjoyable while it lasted.
Today's images are of Chief and Cookie, a sampling of our lava rock trail this morning and my little cabin for tonight.