Rain over Mt Rainier

Yesterday I could only muster up 10 miles out of White Pass. I hiked until just after 6pm to Snow Lake so I could get an early night and a longer sleep than the previous night.

Today was the coldest and wettest day I’ve had on trail in 5 months. If Mt Rainier had have been 5 feet in front of me I still wouldn’t have seen it. I basically walked in misty cloud all day long. It rained most of the night so my tent was soaked when I rolled it up at 6:30am this morning. My shoes and clothes were still wet and the trail was a slushy mud pool which I slipped over all morning.

Last night the zip on my tent broke so it no longer closes and today my hiking pole snapped in half. I think after 5 months everything starts to fall apart, sadly it’s happening a little too soon for me. I can see how dangerous the weather can be, especially because of the steepness and rockiness of the trail. The up hills made me hot and sweaty in my rain jacket, then I froze as I slipped on the downhills. Not much fun.

The good thing about the rain was I had no desire to stop walking, although my poor shoulder which has been in a knot for a couple of weeks now was giving me grief! The pain is becoming unbearable and it makes these steep climbs much harder to bare.

I knew the only shelter from the rain would be at Chinook Pass, 18 miles from where I camped. I passed Leaky and Moonshine this morning who were also freezing cold on trail, and heard from a couple of south bounding section hikers that Bad Seed wasn’t too far ahead of me. It was Brooke’s birthday today (Happy Birthday Brooke!) so she wasn’t able to meet me at the pass, but luckily there were four drop toilets in the parking area, so I took over one for lunch and made myself at home out of the rain (I found out later Bad Seed had done the exact same thing, in the same cubical!).

The rain had stopped when I returned to the trail, but the wind had picked up and it was bone chilling. It was so hard to find the right balance of layers to not sweat through on the way up, but to stay warm as the trail went down. It was a roller coaster after lunch so I decided to stay on the colder side and save my layers and warmth for when I stopped to camp.

I eventually caught up with Bad Seed who hadn’t started hiking until after 10am because she was so toasty warm in her tent this morning. She was planning to go 3 more miles after we reached the camp I decided to stop at, but it was already getting dark and starting to rain again so we both stopped and joined Leaky, Moonshine and Bird Dog at the campsite. Miraculously Leaky found new hiking poles today and was able to give me his old one, amazing! Two odd hiking poles is better than one!

I’m praying for some sun tomorrow to dry everything out. If it’s rainy again I may have to stop at a shelter in 12 miles and try and dry my tent and sleeping bag, otherwise I will definitely freeze tomorrow night!

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8 thoughts on “Rain over Mt Rainier

  1. Oh man, you look miserable! Hope you managed to be somewhat dry and warm tonight. At any point did you consider camping out in the bathroom? 🙂

  2. The cold and wet make it easy to not stop, but they also make it easy to not drink enough water. This will lead to cramps all night, which combined with shivering in a wet down bag is basically hell. So drink up even if the water is cold. Also, never hesitate to camp early if you’re near hypothermic and you fear your judgment is out of whack, you may take a wrong turn. Be mindful of the times you’re hiking up a pass AND shivering, it’s a sign of pre hypothermia.

    Just a few tips from a 2012 hiker who has also been cold and wet.
    Scrub Rat

  3. Hi darling, great photos, you can feel the cold and wet, but not good for you. I think that Brett has some good advice. Make sure that you stay warm. Amazing how much room you had in that cubical, if it had a heather you probably would have stayed there the night. Hope that the sun came out the next day. You may have to get yourself ready for some cooler weather, keep warm. You are doing good. Love Mutti xxoo

  4. Hi Rozanne,

    Oh my! And I thought the ‘coast was clear’ as they say. Sorry to hear about the cold, wet and pain. The pics were beautiful though. Hope things look better tomorrow. You’re amazing!

    Donna

  5. You are a trooper. Eating inside the Lu …. I’ll have to practice that one. Did things ever dry out? Is raingear ever dry … either wet out or inside it seems.

  6. I LOVE when someone was trying to get into the bathroom! Even in the most miserable conditions, you can still find humor and make me laugh out loud. Thanks for sharing. You got this, girl!!

  7. Stay warm! It is hard when it is so wet. I laughed when I saw the picture of the sketchy logs over Bumping River. That is where I slipped and fell on my butt this weekend when I was hiking from White Pass to Chinook Pass.

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