On July 1 I spent my first full day in Oregon. I got an early start because I wanted to get to Callahan’s lodge by a reasonable time so I could rest a bit after my two big days.
Midmorning I caught up with Seven who had passed me while I was still sleeping. I was grateful for his company because I knew the time would fly by while we chatted. He was with a section hiker named Drake and I pulled the two of them along for awhile.
It was a gorgeous day, even if it was unseasonably warm, and there were a lot of day hikers and weekend backpackers out. It’s great to see people in the Northwest take advantage of every piece of nice weather.
We were only about 10 miles into Oregon when we found our first trail magic: a cooler filled with soda, apples, and granola bars! We sat in the shade for a few minutes and enjoyed a cool snack. What a pleasant surprise! I wish I could thank the people who supply these caches in person; they are amazing.
By 2:30 pm we were pulling into Callahan’s lodge on the outskirts of Ashland. They are a family run business and treat PCT hikers well. They have a special that includes a shower, laundry, one beer, dinner, breakfast, and camping on the lawn for $60. When I asked if there was a discount if I didn’t want breakfast, the manager offered the deal to Seven for $40 and to me for $35! We immediately agreed.
The previous four days were the hottest on the trail. I think it was above 100 degrees each day. I sweated buckets constantly, especially going up that huge hill. And the water sources we had were not big enough to even rinse my legs in at night so I was covered in dust, sweat, and grime. Even though I had showered just three days before, my feet and legs were black with dirt. I was so grateful for the shower and laundry. The best part of the shower was that they provided bathrobes! It was fabulous to wear the bathrobe while doing laundry because the only bottoms I have other than the shorts I wear every day are my long underwear and it was far too hot to put those on for even an hour. I was able to wash all of my clothes which was a nice treat.
I got a cider at the bar, which helped to relieve my parched mouth and also downed several glasses of ice water.
Dinner was all you can eat spaghetti and sauce with side salad and bread. We were joined by Indy, Breathless, Huck, Rocky Point, and Fox and we all had a great time putting away a lot of pasta. I ate one huge plate full, which was about what everyone else did. Indy ate two and a half plates!
The lodge also converted part of a conference room into a place for hikers to hang out in so after our early dinner I hung out there to catch up on this blog. Slowly everyone else retired to their tents outside, until it was just Seven and me left at 9 pm. I knew it would be hot and full of mosquitoes outside so I suggested that we ask the night manager if we could sleep there. Seven asked and he said he didn’t care, as long as we packed up by 8 am, so we got an extra bonus of sleeping in an air conditioned room (on our sleeping pads)!