The Post Office, where everyone had a resupply package (literally everyone), did not open until 10:00 am. I decided to pack all my gear up before meeting the group for breakfast. It was a relatively relaxing morning in town. We all couldn't do a damn thing till the post office opened up, followed by the shuttle that was scheduled to depart for the trail at 11:00 am.
After buying a few more snacks at the shop and enjoying the morning sun over Lake Chelan, Signs, Slingshot, Bravo and I figured it was smart to get in line for our packages. By the time we arrived, there was a line and someone coordinating a list so we didn't actually need to stand in a line. This was an hour before the Post Master would arrive.
When he finally showed up, the Post Office became center stage for hikers and it was a very small space. When my name was called, I went in swiftly with a small package, consisting of non-essentials for the last leg of the journey, and presented my ID to the Post Master. Unfortunately my package was in the lot of boxes, but was likely in the much larger storage room. So my name was once again put on a list. Once said list had a few hikers on it, he took us downstairs and to go through his back room which was filled with THOUSANDS of thru-hiker resupply boxes. I felt for the man.
Rapidly approaching 11:00, I was ecstatic to have my package and not need to eat convenient store snacks for the next 4 days, but I didn't have time to unload the box before the bus was going to leave. I figured I'd be able to take care of it back at the trail, and that's what most other hikers ended up doing.
On the road back to the trail, it was essential that we stop at the bakery to load up on cinnamon rolls and other pastries, as well as have another cup of coffee.
I took another 30 minutes once back at the trail to organize my resupply and trade food with others doing the same. The trash bins were packed to the brim from all of the resupply garbage.
Signs, Slingshot, Bravo and I did not setup a camping reservation at the ranger station in town. That means, we had to walk at least 18 miles to exit North Cascades National Park to camp legally. Our real goal was Rainy Pass, a major highway in the area. We figured it'd be a great place to start tomorrow. A relatively easy section for today, it is the beginning of a nearly 25 mile uphill section. So, the 19.5 miles we hiked today was a very slight uphill. Tomorrow would be a much steeper section.
Fun note: This section is one of the most well known along the trail for it's bear sightings. Many years ago, with my family, were eating lunch along this section when a momma bear and cub wondered into our line of sight, across a seemingly narrow river with many logs giving her access to the side we were on.
This time around, I didn't see any, though the ranger warned us there was lots of activity and a bear canister is advised. None of us even had a hanging bags. In the tent with my food, I slept rather soundly.