|Permit filled out and ready to hike at the Tunnel Creek trail head|
|Viewpoint over the gorge of Tunnel Creek from the trail|
At a particularly scenic viewpoint of the creek gorge below I stopped for a sip of water and then decided to wrap the kilt around my waist at least until I got onto more open trail and a little further in.
|My homemade hiking kilt worn on a previous hike.|
It must have been a sixth sense but no sooner than I'd pressed the edges of the waistband into place around my waist here comes this beautiful black Labrador and a nine to ten year old girl around the hidden curve of the trail before me. I stepped aside as she stopped and said 'hi'. Moments later mom and dad come huffing down the trail carrying heavy backpacks and making good use out of dual trekking poles each.
Mom and dad were initially a little taken back by this half-naked hiker but actually quickly recovered when I asked them how far in they had gone. It's a technique I find that works well . . . diverting attention to something innocuous. And it kept the encounter mellow and an excuse for them to be civil and pause to catch their breath. They had actually gone all the way to Trap Lake (a good six miler one way) and it was the girl's first hike. The girl chimed in with all the things she had seen on the trail.
|Mountain goat occupying the trail in front of me|
|Nude hiker wins out over mountain goat . . . lol, the goat booked.|
|Connecting to the Pacific Crest Trail|
|Approaching Trap Pass|
|High elevation alpine meadows on Trap Pass|
|On the return trip, exploring Tunnel Creek within the gorge|
|Nearing the end of the hike|
|Back at the trail head, cognizant that there are still other hikers on the trail somewhere|
Encounter tally for the day: Nine (two neutral or dismissive, seven positive, none negative)