In Oregon me and Simba had to skip about 45 miles due to forest fires. That was demoralizing, but we had heard that Oregon is known for its fires. What we didn’t know is that Washington can burn as well.

Now a part of Washington is closed because of a recent fire. And we thought this whole time that once we got to the last state, it’d be smooth sailing to Canada.

Yesterday the smoke was growing. We had heard that there was a fire, but that it didn’t affect the trail.

Me and four others walked north from Chinook Pass. At each ridge we crossed, we could see more and more of the smoke. Even some flames. The trail just went closer and closer. Nine in the evening it had gotten dark and we could see how a huge amount of flames lit up the sky. We decided to turn around, nine miles from the road, go back to Sheep lake (1.5 miles from Chinook Pass) and camp there.

The next morning we walked down to the road. Half an hour later, the forest service came and closed the trail.

We’ve been trying to hitch our way to Snoqualmie. So writing this, I’m at a Starbucks in Enmeclaw, trying to figure out how to get there.

Having to skip another section isn’t fun. But nature has its course. And nothing is as easy as going from point A to B. Even a path through the country.

In the end, I think it’s these challenges that makes this journey the most special. That teaches us to be a adaptable and open minded. This is what grows us humble, this is what grows us strong.

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