As we were leaving the hotel today it started to rain. The forecast said 0% chance of rain and the radar didn’t show any rain in the area. Well, it was totally wrong because it was raining, how annoying. We drove west of Rice Lake to Polk County to start in the Polk County Forest with the Indian Creek Segment.
Before we could even finish the shuttle, we had some deer excitement! A deer jumped out, Jared slowed down, and it looked like it was going to run away, but then ran along side the car! I was afraid it was going to run into the car. (Luckily for me we weren’t in my car, so I wasn’t too worried about that, but still nervous.)
The rain stopped before we started, but the grass was obviously wet and the grass was long in spots, so it didn’t take long to get wet shoes and wet pants. My hiking shoes are waterproof, so my feet stay dry until they’re submerged in water. After 5 miles we stopped for lunch, the hotel continental breakfast didn’t keep me full. I had taken off my rain coat, but it was pretty windy and I got cold fast. I kept my coat on then the rest of the day. This also kept away the mosquitoes.
At some point I stepped in water and got one soaked foot. I was sick of a squishing foot, so I decided to change socks. My shoe was still wet, but the sock made my foot feel better. Jared thought he heard poles clacking all afternoon because we thought we were close to the Warrior Hikers. Later on we found out we weren’t close at all, they were 17 miles ahead of us. Jared just heard his own poles or maybe me coughing from the pollen (or he’s just crazy). We met a guy who has been doing trail maintenance for 20 years. He was out looking for the Warrior Hikers and thought we might be them. He offered to shuttle us in the future, which was really nice.
6 miles before the end I ate a gel and took some ibuprofen, which helped. I felt better after awhile and definitely didn’t feel as tired as yesterday. We ended at the ski trails again with 16.9 miles, and this time I found out that the bathroom wasn’t locked in the warming shelter, there was an outhouse. This outhouse was unique because the toilet seat was padded. Obviously the skiers don’t want a cold butt in the winter!
So far the two day mileage total is 34 miles! We had supper at Culver’s in Rice Lake and then headed east toward Rib Lake. As we were in the middle of nowhere we saw 4 bears, a mom and three cubs! The cubs were really little and cute!
Tonight we are camping north of Rib Lake near the Rusch Preserve. Tomorrow is another hiking day, but not as many miles!