I got a very slow start this morning, not hiking until 9:00. My foot was more stiff than usual and not loosening up after a couple of miles, despite taking ibuprofen and moving slowly. I started worrying that maybe continuing my hike right now was not the smartest thing. Googling while I was in town didn’t help since it pointed towards metatarsal stress fractures, a common thru hiking injury. Even if I don’t have full stress fractures yet, maybe continuing to hike would lead to them. Should I rest now and hope it gets better so I can continue hiking later, or keep going, possibly leading to more serious injury which would end the hike? It’s a crappy situation.
Stretch caught up and helped me go through different options and come up with a plan. There was one more road back to Ashland coming up before I’d be in the wilderness for a while. I didn’t think another day or two of rest would do anything since the day I already took off did nothing. Whisper was still in the area so I figured I could go rest with her and Mailman for a while in Eugene, and then move to Portland to rest more with my old roommate Sean. I could get back on the trail at PCT Days in Cascade Locks on the 28th, hike north through Washington by the end of September, then go back and do Oregon in early October, when the weather will be cooler and the smoke less. I’d still be near the same people going through Washington, instead of behind from going so slowly, and I could visit with my Oregon friends more too. Not a bad plan.
I texted everyone involved and they said yes. Whisper and her mom came and got me at the road, arriving the same time I did. We dropped her mom back off at her home and then continued to Eugene. I will probably go get xrayed in the morning, although stress fractures often don’t show up on xrays.
5.3 miles today.