Raven dropped me off at the trailhead at 7 am and he headed out to a different trail head. The plan was to hike 20 miles and meet up to camp together.
My day was mostly uphill. Around the four mile mark two moose checked me out and then went on their way. After the moose, I entered the Sheep Study Area of 16,000 acres. The Department of Agriculture moves herds of sheep into the high mountains in July and August each year. What they study exactly is unknown to me.
There were many huge views today. There was one almost flat area of 2 miles where on the right was a huge view of Idaho and to the left was a huge view of Montana. I feel so fortunate so see some of these views.
I messed up a bit in that I did not carry enough water to traverse 12.5 miles comfortably. Toward the end of the 12 miles I was rationing my water. One mouthful every 15 minutes. When I got to the next water source I filtered enough water to fill my auxiliary bottle and drank the whole thing.
The water source was only .3 mile from our agreed upon camp spot so I carried water to filter at camp.
Today I met 7 people headed north on the trail. One Speed and Just Paul are doing a section hike. Justin, from Butte and his friend from Jackson, WY are sectioning. Golden, an older thru hiker, was walking up hill and states he had been hiking uphill for two days. He looked tired. Finally, there was Chips Crusher and Damian, thru hikers we met south of Dubois, WY. They both got off trail by 4 miles, meaning they walked 8 miles off trail. Ouch!
I arrived at camp at 5 pm. Raven hikes faster than me but he wouldn’t have gotten on the trail until an hour and a half after I started. With that in mind I expected him around 6:30. 6:30, 7, and 8 came and went with no Raven. I turned on my phone and voila! I actually had service. A text to Raven determined he got lost and ended up hiking almost 30 miles before he found a road and hitched back to the truck. It was good to know he had not been injured.
Just as I was dropping off to sleep, there was a loud animal noise not far from the tent. I have no idea what type of animal it was and after 20 minutes it moved on.