My last few days of hiking in California were almost completely solitary. And my trip north had me dealing exclusively with people and situations completely unrelated to hiking. But now I was setting off down a very popular stretch of trail in a time when hiking is more popular than usual: the week leading up to Labor Day. I sure wouldn’t be getting the trail to myself. But with my legs rested, my pack feeling light, and the trail pretty worn and gentle, there was a good chance I would be outpacing any short sectioners I came upon.
Note that in this section, I had to walk north to the border and then south from there. Because the Canadians have closed the border to all Americans, this backtracking is mandatory. Otherwise, I would have crossed into Canada and hitchhiked or bussed or whatever to Manning Park to go south the easy way. But since it is required for everyone this year, I get to say that the trail is 30 miles longer than usual. And to that end, I’m counting both the northbound and southbound miles north of Hart’s Pass as trail progress.