July 24 – Brand New Day

It’s a brand new day
The sun is shining
It’s a brand new day
For the first time in such
A long long time
I know I’ll be okay
– from “Brand New Day” by Joshua Radin

Big Lake Youth Camp to mile 4 of Mount Jefferson Fire Reroute
21.4 miles

After a very dry and warm night in the shelter provided by Big Lake Youth Camp, I leisurely ate breakfast at the camp and packed up. The weather had improved and I left about 11:00 warm, clean, and happy. Thank you Big Lake and your staff!

BIG surprise…an on trail introduction. Just as I reached Santaim Pass, I recognized the hiker ahead as Balls. I have had much correspondence online, but have never actually met him in person. Think Outside interviewed Sunshine, his daughter last year. Balls and Sunshine are father and daughter that have completed the Triple Crown hiking the PCT, CDT, and AT. I was thrilled to talk with him and catch up.

Most of you that are reading this are aware of the multiple fires in central Oregon and some of you have expressed concern along with well wishes. Thank you everyone.

Currently, north of where I am there are 2 detours or reroutes with additional miles, some trail and some road walk. Many hikers are skipping up to Timothy Lake to avoid the whole area. I decided this morning to go ahead and do the first detour and see how it goes. My main motivation is to see Jefferson Park and Ollalie Lake which is right after the Mount Jefferson reroute.

I am camped about 4 miles into the 23 mile Mount Jefferson reroute. The trail is through an old overgrown burn area. Luckily, the forest service recently cut many of the logs that had fallen over the trail.

It was tough finding anywhere to pitch my tent. I finally settled on a little clearing beside the trail that I think the forest service dug out. It is spooky camping in an old bun area. Weird noises in the trees. Gotta say…not my favorite.

The highlights of the day was entering Mount Jefferson Wilderness and traversing around Three Finger Jack. It is one beaut of a mountain.

Tomorrow should be very interesting.
















  1. Burn areas s*ck! -Nice taught pitch!

  2. I can just imagine those trees creeking all night long.

  3. So sorry about fires! I did that section last year, and it was grand. We were just evacuated because if fire in Winthrop, but all is well now.

    Sent from my iPhone

    • Skyward, I just read about the fire. Man that had to have been so scary and stressful. Glad things are better. Well it will be another year for Washington. Darn that lingering snow and work. Hope you are in an adventure somewhere.


  4. Glad you are OK and dry…Balls !!
    I’ve watched the 2011 You Tube videos
    of his river crossings including His famous epitaph to “Skippy” !!
    (lost peanut butter jar)
    Stay dry, safe and most importantly
    ENJOY !!!
    Wired and Jett Cat are tearing up
    Maine !!!

  5. How fun to meet Balls. Live the pix of the two of you. I agree about the burn area plus all those widow maker trees. I’m excited to spend some time exploring those mountains in the future. Hope these fires end soon. Fingers crossed!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *