6/29/19 – Belden Rave

Day 9

Miles: 1,293 to 1284.29

The night brings a peaceful rest. In the evening a doe visits our camp, walking around Swayed’s rent. Couple of times it lifts its head, looking directly at me. Such a beautiful moment.

The morning is a tad bit chiller than the previous one. I think the chill comes from the swift Chip creek. Soon after we leave it’s proximity, the temperature rises.

Couple miles down the trail we meet Packratt. He made it to Myrtle Flats, according Guthook’s App prime camping spot, and he is complaining about mosquitoes that were unbearable there last night. The site was spacious and flat in a nice forest setting but our one with the music of Chip Creek, some views, and no bugs was clearly a winner.

The descent is painful. It’s rocky and rough and spots, and incredible long. And it’s not downhill the entire way. We clearly have to make it to the bottom of the valley but somehow the trail manages to sneak 600 feet of climbing in.

In Belden, Priceless, an EDM festival is taking a place. We catch the setting stage but the small town, if you really can call it a town, is already overflowing with people, tent are set up along the river, and if we want any sleep at all, we know we have to get out of here.

Local trail angel, Brenda Braaten of Little Haven picks us up and takes us to her home about 1.5 miles away. She lets us take her two guest rooms, shows us where to do our laundry and where to shower. Afterwards we walk 1/4 mile to Caribou for milkshake. Everyone’s raving about the milkshakes here, we have to give it a try. It’s ok. Not necessarily the best I ever had but on a hot day it hits the spot.

In the meantime the rave in Belden grows. We walk back to town for dinner. Tent cities grew on any flat area, tents are perched even in slopes that were never meant for tenting. Several stages are built so that the music can start tonight at 9:00 p.m. and continue until the end of the weekend.

We were hoping to reconnect with Trudi and Jeff here but in the end their plan changes and they are not coming coming. That means tomorrow we are back on the trail and first thing we have to do is climb a 4,000 foot hill.

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