Day 135: (19.3 miles)
mile 1965.1 – 1984.4
Today was all about spectacular views. Although it was somewhat overcast, it made the Sisters more mysterious and spectacular. Just like sisters in a family, they were similar yet each had its own unique features and beauty. As we walked, we could see an expansive thick white fog had settled into a valley below. We wondered if we would be descending into that valley that seemed so far off. It beckoned like an abyss that awakens your curiosity and draws you in like the smell of warm cookies just out of the oven. Glacial snow stuck to the tops and deep crevasses of each mountain which we found unusual for this relatively low elevation and comfortable temperature.
Green meadows with narrow streams cross the trail.
Bright and colorful blooms of mountain flowers in white, yellow, purple and fuscia accompany the streams.
The trail winds its way through the Obsidian Limited Entry Area, a cornucopia of slick solid black and marbled boulders. Golf ball sized chunks and shards of sharp obsidian peppered the trail beneath our feet.
This area seems like it would have been the Costco for shopping for material to make arrowheads way back when.
We pass by Obsidian Falls and take obligatory pictures. Once out of the special area the terrain changes dramatically and it is like we are on the surface of another planet, like Mars maybe.
The trail now floats over rolling mounds and rivers of lava rocks as far as the eye can see. This is what our feet have been waiting for, a true challenge! The lava rocks are a colorful blend of red, black and sandy brown. We were glad it was overcast and not blazing hot. More snow began to appear beside the trail, and a faint sound of thunder permeated the eerie calm along with the sound of rocks shifting beneath our feet.
The now hardened lava flows softened back into tree lined and boulder pocked forest. Just before camp, we watered up at Minnie Scott Spring which bubbled up through its coarse gravel bottom, to the surface of a shallow pool whose cascading water created a narrow icy stream.
2 miles later we make camp just before a narrow meadow. We are cold and damp. To remedy the situation, Paul built a fire. After a warm dinner next to a hot fire we retired for the evening.