Middle Fork Feather River to Buck’s Lake (alternate), 17 miles
Cost: Stayed at a Trail Angel’s house in Buck’s Lake, donation
We all slept in until 6:30am, not wanting to get up and face the massive climb that would start our day! The first climb was like a warm up, the second was 8 miles of climbing over 3,000 feet!
Mr Smith and I talked about food and cocktails the entire climb and it went by quicker than I thought. There was a lovely spring at the top of the second climb called Lookout spring where we filled up our water bottles and had a second breakfast. We decided we would take the Buck’s Lake alternate trail (a loop that would join back up with the PCT but add an extra 2.4 miles). This alternate route would take us past the lake and 3 restaurants where we could have lunch before continuing on. We were 7 miles away from the Lakeshore restaurant and lunch so we moved with quite some speed to get there.
We got to the Lakeshore restaurant just before the heavens opened and the rain started. We had pizza, burgers and peach pie and mine was washed down with ginger ale as I wasn’t feeling very well (I was hoping it was just the fact I took some strong painkillers on an empty stomach (for my ankle) and nothing worse.
The rain had set in and we really didn’t want to go anywhere! The lady at the bar gave us a phone number for a lodge nearby which we called but it was really expensive. She also mentioned some trail angels in town which reminded us that we had seen a sign for them on the trail. We called the trail angels and they said we could stay with them and that they would come and pick us up 🙂
They picked us up, brought us back to their beautiful home, fed us a delicious chicken and rice dish with vegetables for dinner, gave us beer and soda, allowed us to shower, do laundry, wear loaner clothes and we were treated to a ukulele concert by some locals. It was a wonderful evening and as much as I want to write more about this wonderful couple, they would prefer to not be on social media as they open their cabin to hikers for 1 month each year and want it to be a surprise. It certainly was a lovely surprise for me.
We slept under the stars on mattresses on the deck.