Halfway there (or not)
Today I passed the midpoint marker on the PCT, indicating the exact middle of the distance between the beginning and end of the trail. Of course, for me, this isn't quite the milestone that it would otherwise be, as I have been forced to skip a large portion of trail due to snow (but I'm in the process of working my way back to complete it). On the other hand, I've also already done several hundred miles of trail north of this point, so honestly, I think it just about evens out. I'm probably a little less than halfway done right now, but by the time I fill in the sections south of here that I missed, I will also be much more than at the "midpoint" of my ride. So it still felt like a wonderful sense of accomplishment to pass this sign. Sometimes it is easy to get so caught up in the daily grind of mile after mile, campsite after campsite, and forget that, a little at a time, we are making progress toward our goal. A reminder like this makes me feel good.
A little bit of fun trail magic during the day . . . two very generous guys were fixing lunch for passing hikers along the trail, so I stopped and gratefully accepted a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and an orange and some apples for the horses too. What a great little surprise! Traveling the PCT is like that--there are often these amazing moments of good will and simple kindness that completely transform one's day, and one's faith in humanity.
Also during the day, I got one of my first glimpses of Mt. Lassen rising in the distance in front of us. I had already seen it from the other side, of course, when I was riding southbound into the Hat Creek area, so it was like a beacon showing us the way back to where we were headed.