I feel incredibly lucky to live in a place where I can drive 30ish minutes up to the highest point on a road in the state. Last weekend I ran from Hart's pass to Rainy pass on the PCT with my friend Stacey, her friend Ryne and his girlfriend Kristen. After a bit of a rough start with a flat tire on the way up (caution: watch for rebar sticking up from the road), we started off on our mountain adventure on a clear, warm morning. Stacey's husband, Dave, started with us and did an out and back before generously driving back down to Mazama and then up the highway to meet us at Rainy pass.
The last time I did this as a night run, starting at midnight on a full moon. It was incredible, but I was excited to see everything during the daylight, especially through the overgrown, brushy parts where I managed to roll my ankle no less than seven times. That section this time was really fun, and there were huge mountains to look at, too! We were graced with some cloud coverage through the heat of the day, which was a welcome break. This truly is a must-do run. Even with tons of hiking, it's possible to do in a day, and the grade is perfect, making even the climbs quite enjoyable.
|Kristen, going down, down, down.|
|Oddly, this section was not visible in the middle of the night.|
|Me, Stacey, and my weird, contorted shoulder, almost done with the final climb|
|After many miles of climbing, we make it to Methow Pass. Almost all ridge running from here.|
|Matching Canadians, rockin' the last stretch of flat|
|Looking west-ish. Mountains are ok.|
|And finally, the descent to Rainy Pass.|