Day 96 - Zero Day in Castella. Lots of eating food, relaxing in camp, calling home and taking at least 4 showers. Though a very simple town to take a zero, Castella is one of my favorite places in Northern California to take a zero. I think the free showers had something to do with it.
Through trial and error, I learned how to cook a pizza over a fire pit. With 3 pizza's to get it right, the first was under-cooked, the second was unevenly cooked and the last was PERFECT! Split between a large group in camp, the 3 pizzas were quickly devoured so everyone moved onto their trail dinners and beer or wine.
Butterfingers and my strategy for the next section was to push longer days, so we would arrive in Etna and be able to take a nero. We both had enough food to hike an additional day in case we wanted to slow down.
From Castella, the PCT climbs gradually for nearly 20 miles past the Castle Craig's, which seemed to tower over me as the trail passes below them on the hillside. With Mt. Shasta and Castle Craig's as the backdrop for all the views, it felt like a new region of the trail... not the long up and down trail through trees that I was getting use to at this point.
Near the end of the day, I stumbled upon a couple baby snakes. I have no idea what type they were, but it was becoming cooler at this point and I did not see a snake den or mother around. I expect they did not survive the night.
The views continued all the way to camp and I saw my first unobstructed sunset for what seemed to be ages. Also, 1500 miles!!!