We had a message on our phone ...
Jason and Cassandra made it to Government Camp, OR today, July 30th.
The got their resupply box, had a nice dinner, and back on the trail by 6:00 pm.
The trail has been mostly good, and they are making good time.  Their next resupply point is Big Lake Youth Camp, about 4-5 days.  We've sent them new shoes and socks!  They sent us old shoes, crocks, gators, and miscellaneous no lnger needed items, which we received today.
Go, Jason and Cassandra.
We love you and pray for you every day!
Rich here ...
Cassandra says I don't have to put everything she writes on the Blog. But, I couldnt figure out what to leave out.  It was all so interesting to Cindy and I. 

I'll take comments on this subject?
7-23-10    White Pass to Trout Lake (Rd23)
Sitting in KJ’s Café in Trout Lake.  The worst part about this section was not the snow or the mosquitoes, or trying to watch for a ride for over 2 hours before walking and then getting picked up, or the blisters, or sore feet, or jogging back a mile looking for a lost bug net (found it); the hardest part was walking by all of the huckleberry bushes and not having any ripe berries to pick!  It was torture!

I was really excited about this section, the goat rock, the famous knife’s edge, Mt. Adams, lava fields.  It didn’t disappoint, it was my favorite section so far and that’s not just because it was the shortest.  The views went for miles and miles, the lava field maze in the snow was really fun. 

My thoughts focused a lot on the fact that we are almost all the way through Washington and the fact that we are really doing it, and doing it together, and enjoying it and enjoying each other.  God is giving us a real gift by allowing us to travel this journey together.  We have been so dependent on Him just for strength and support, the reality for us has been that He has not given us any more than we can handle.  We met others that turned back because of the snow, but we have been cultivated through earlier sections and felt prepared.  There are so many analogies to life and marriage out on the trail and yet they are so easy to forget once you are back in the comforts of the “real world”.  I’m glad we’ve still got around 4 months to let them sink in.  

Oregon here we come!!
White Pass to Trout Lake
July 23 – Sitting at the Trout Lake Diner, waiting for breakfast!  It’s a beautiful morning, it’s a great little town, and I have coffee to drink!  It’s been seven days!   And I slept in a bed last night and it was sooo nice!........Sitting at White Pass, I was nervous going into the next section…”There’s lots of snow still up there!”  The locals were giving us the updates…Ugh…snow…what are the alternate routes?...just in case.  Well, there’s not a whole lot.  So we’re just like, “Well, we go out and see.  We won’t know until we get there.” 

So with an anticipation that was heavy on me, we left the store around 5 PM and started our trek up the mountain…and I mean up!  I was not feeling it.  At all.  I probably could have crawled faster.  And it was warm and I was sweating so much.  Faithful Jason – He naturally goes faster than me on up hills, and he especially could have been running past me on this day, but he stayed right behind me – acting as my cheerleader…I love that when I’m having a hard time, he sticks by me, and doesn’t just abandon me – being wrapped up in his own agenda.  This is our journey!!  Together!  I love my hubby!! 

We ended up walking in about seven or eight miles and found a flat spot next to the trail to set up camp.  Alright Trout Lake….we’re coming to getcha! 

Day Two (or one and a half) July 24th

Well it’s always lovely running into people going the other direction who say they’ve turned around because the conditions made the trail undoable…But we looked over maps with this gentleman, and he saw that we had ice axes and a GPS and said he thought we could make it.  OK.  I’ll take that.

We crossed several sections of snow before we got to the Knife’s Edge. (Nice name.)

Nothing terrible.  We still were using our trekking poles…  This “Knife’s Edge” tormented me because I knew from description that it was an exposed piece of trail…on the edge of a mountain, not very wide in places.  If it was going to have snow on it, I probably would pee myself!  And let me tell you, that feeling I had when in the distance I could see that the trail was clear of snow…Sheer Thankfulness!  In the purest form.  It was still sketchy, but really, really, pretty.  We could see all the way down to the left and right.  There were goats off in the distance!  The weather was perfect…couldn’t have asked for more….

Well then the snow came.  We pulled out our ice axes and from there, just carefully made our way over everything.  Totally doable.  I felt that God had prepared us for this… He’s so good!

For the most part, this was one of my favorite sections so far.  Goat Rocks and Gifford Pinchot.  Seeing Rainier, Mt. St. Helen’s and Mt. Adams all the time was so awesome.  The weather was great the whole time.  Boot skiing!  Goats, my first lava fields, springs, waterfalls, pretty sunsets…the mosquitoes were HORRIBLE, and going up and over snow is so tiring and makes my feet and knees hurt more than usual.  But other than that, we made it to Road 23 with a great sense of accomplishment.  One more section and we’ll be done with Washington!  Cheers to a continued journey!  We love and miss so many of you all! 

We saw a big group of people out there (NOLS, Outward Bound maybe?)  Met Frostbite – a gentleman heading North outside of Trout Lake a few miles.  Also Kristina Franklin and Travis Arket – first Northbounders!  They are doing Oregon later. 
So it's about 3 pm and we're just about ready to head back out on the trail-We sure do like to take our time and take advantage of our hotel room ;)

We're rested, we're full, we're clean, we've lightened our loads (bye ice-axes, hope we don't need you anymore!) and we have new shoes!  It's the little things...

Thanks Curt and Greg for your recent comments!  Sorry we missed both of you guys-but we'll meet again ;)

Now good bye Cascade Locks!  It should be about 2+ days until our next resupply @ Government Camp.  We've been looking forward to this section, the Eagle Creek Trail Alternative.  Waterfalls!  Love it...

And love you!  Bye everyone! :)
It's late right now, but I feel this kick of energy from getting the chance to communicate with you via the internet and connect with some friends...Rich and Cindy, we'll call you tomorrow!  This evening passed right by me and it was a little late by the time I thought to finally call!

So yes, Hello Oregon!!!  Today seemed to go on forever..I don't know what it was; walking more than 20 miles, not eating enough, being tired from lack of good sleep, having really achy feet, the thought of being in town...the miles just seemed to drag on.  We made it into Cascade Locks, Oregon, walking over the infamous Bridge of the Gods, around 7:30pm.  Then we decided to check the Best Western to see what their availability was for tomorrow and learned that they were all booked!  They said they had a room available for tonight, and so Jason and I decided to just go for it.  Two big things, they have laundry and internet, so those were the clinchers.  We're undecided as to what to do for tomorrow as we still want to spend another day here.  There are other motels, so we'll see what happens...

I took a nice long bath, ate some icecream and watched a little T.V.  Popped some blisters, cleaned my toes, rubbed my feet, did laundry...And now update, so I think I'm ready to lay my head on that nice, soft pillow!  Thank you Lord for mattresses...

I'm going to send our card of pictures out to Rich as well as our journals, so keep posted to finally "see" what we've been up to!  Thanks again for all the comments you guys!  It's really fun, like Christmas, to see them or hear about them from Rich! :)

We're well and still thankful that we're able to be out here with each other, taking each day as it comes-with the good and the bad...and let me tell you, there's plenty of both ;)

Much love,
Day One - Thursday, July 15th, 2010 

Jerry, Marti, and Gavin gave us an amazing farewell with a hearty breakfast of eggs, hash browns and pancakes, and a ride up to the Pass with lots of hugs and kisses and a prayer - they're such a blessing to us!  It was hard to say goodbye, especially knowing that it was our last "family" stop before being out on our own.  We've really appreciated the extra time spent with the Neylands and Crams.  They'll be highlights of our entire trip, I'm sure.

Despite not getting on the trail until around 10AM, we were still able to put in over 20 miles.  I never knew how pretty it was south of Steven's Pass!  Great views of Hwy 90 and then of Mt. Rainier!  There's little lakes here and there an pretty meadows.  Our guide books talk about clear-cuts dominating this section but I be to differ!  Go to the Olympic Peninsula if you want a bit of perspective!  Now those are UGLY clear cuts - these are clean and are growing back with green plants....  We cmaped by a road, one of the many we crossed.  I liked them because they helped give me destinations to keep working toward.  Sometimes you need motivation from the littlest things when you're backpacking all day!

People help too, which we saw a few this day.  My favorite was the Grandpa who took the grandchildren fishing at a little picturesque lake.  We ate some lunch and listened happily.

Day Two - July 16th
We decided that we had camped in such a spot that it put us within range of a shelter over 20 miles down the trail. We gave ourselves the lofty goal and sure enough we made it!  It was exhausting with some parts of the trail.  This was the second day I pulled my radio/MP3 out to get me up a big hill.  The trail changed many times which made for some interesting hiking - nonetheless tiring - but fantastic views again and more people!

When we got to the shelter, another couple named Scott and Jackie were there, having hiked in from White Pass!  I was so happy to hear what their hike had been so far, and we shared about ours.  They showed us some pictures of the snow that lay ahead - YUCK!

We shared the cabin, which by the way was really beautiful - definitely mice issues, but there were a lot of hooks to hang things on.  At one point I heard them chewing on something, so I woke Jason up to have him go check it out - that's his job right?!  Apparently things seemed OK, and indeed in the morning nothing had bee eaten!  I hate when mice win things! 

Day Three - July 17th
We had a beautiful sunny morning in Gov't Meadows - lazy, sleepy, lacking motivation.  Scott and Jackie awoke and we spent a little more time with them before finally getting going.  Talk about time warp.  Jason and I felt so weird all day.  1.2 miles seemed like 31. All day.  And it was warm, fairly dry, and my feet hurt so much.  The poor things developed some blisters from the days before.  No fun.

We saw even more people today - popular section!  Horse riders even!  It was fun chatting with them about what we're doing and answering their questions.  It's encouraging to hear other's enthusiasm.

It was a long day but still put in our 20 miles or so to Sheep Lake.  We set up our tarp in really windy conditions and snuggled up eat some yummy chili.

Day Four - July 18th
Hello Snow.  And hello Troy and Carrie!  Seeing these two was a huge encouragement!  Here we are, traversing a snow field, and here come two others right towards us!  We stopped and talked with them for a little while and it was so great hearing a little bit about them and why they were out there.  They had come from White Pass too and told us that we could do it!  I love that.  Thanks Abba!

We left them and continued on - snow, views, more snow, more views, clear trail, mosquitoes...oh yes - they're out in full force.  But we fight back with our awesome bug net that Jason sewed.  We sleep and even eat sometimes with no bug issues! 

We made it to a lovely camp outside of a meadow and next to a creek.  We've seen a lot of elk in this area which has been exciting.  We set up camp early and cleaned up a bit - now time for some pistachio pudding with Newman O's mint cookies!  Tomorrow, White Pass!

Day Five - July 19th
Being here at the Kracker Barrel is awesome!  It feels so good to rest and relax, use the bathroom, eat a good sandwich!

Well I must say that this last section was less "Extreme" - minus the very extreme mosquitoes!  But we just walked ourselves over 98 miles, seeing beautiful mountains, flowers, elk, marmots....It wasn't all easy, that's for sure.  We ran into snow for just a little while - thank God!  I'm nervous about the next section because it goes up to 7,000 feet again - yuck!  Good views from that high though, huh?  Reports are that there's a lot of snow so we'll see what happens.....

Blisters, tired feet - taking rest breaks feels so good!  All of our camps have been great.  The food has bee awesome!  MVP's on this trip:  chocolate Newman O cookies, crocs, sunblock, trekking poles, bug net, my hubby!  I wouldn't be able to keep going if it weren't for him - he's a fantastic companion!!

Thank you for praying!    Keep it coming!
Rich here...
Cassandra called from Trout Lake.  They made it a half day faster than expected. 
The trail has still had lots of snow, but not anything like the first week.  Cassandra feels God used that first week to prepare them for these past weeks.  Under normal hiking circumstances, they would have been tough.  But, now the miles seem comparitively easy!
The views have been fantastic!  And, they loved the goats through the Goat Rocks.
So far they've not met any thru hikers.
It was a 13 mile road from the PCT to Trout Lake, and it took 2 hours for them to get a ride.  But, they are now looking forward to a good night's rest in a real bed.  They have rented a room in the back of the Trout Lake Grocery.  It's very nice, and they even get a tv to watch!
Anyway, all is going well.

Also, we got journals from them in the mail for the Snoqualmie to White Pass section.  I'll post those tomorrow.
Rich here ...
Cassandra and Jason made it to White Pass!
They made it this Monday around 1:00, picked up the supply box, called in, and are headed back on the trail this evening for a few extra miles.
They sound fit, and eager to keep going!
They found snow above 6500 feet, but it never gave them any severe problems.  That said, they were glad to have ice axes and trekking poles.  They encountered a few hikers this time.  But, no thru hikers.  They are curious as to the conditions ahead, so if anyone has an idea, please leave a comment!
Cassandra has sent a copy of her journal, and when it arrives, I'll post more.
It's been over a month since we first started at the Canadian border and oh what a month it has been, impossible to put words to and I'm so glad that I get to share this with my wife.  She has been doing amazing pushing through blisters, knee pain, etc.  I'm so proud of her.  After our 2 days in Snoqualmie, where I was able to get a cheese pizza and chocolate milk, we were eager to hit the trail.  The forecast was positive and I was excited to see Rainier.  This has been the most southbound friendly of all the trails with emblems and signs all over the place.  The trail has been incredibly well graded and mostly free of snow until Chinook Pass.  The views have not disappointed, they have been fantastic.  Something in me gets all excited when I see big mountains, not that I want to climb them, I just want to look at them.  Overall the section went really smoothly, not much snow, tons of mosquitoes by the lakes and we met quite a few other people (2 couples section hiking north from White Pass and a few day hikers.)  Well, I'm not much for journaling so you'll have to wait for pictures!
   Hello "Jason and Cassandra Boyes ABoyesLIfe Pacific Crest Trail~2010" blog site readers!! My name is Gavin Neyland and it looks like I get the mic for a few minutes. So J & C arrived at the Summit Inn at the Snoqualmie Pass on Monday evening.  My parents picked them up and brought them to our house where they planned to stay until  Wednesday. We all enjoyed a nice time of relaxing, resting, and eating with them ( :
   J & C said their goodbyes and I drove them back up to the pass around 4pm on Wednesday. We took some fun pics and then they were off... at least for a couple minutes. Cassandra quickly realized that she had left her trek poles back in my dad's truck. So they decided the best thing to do was to go back to the house, get the poles, stay one more night and leave early the next morning since they were already getting such a late start that day.
   Interestingly enough, that night as Cassandra was checking her facebook she came to find out that their good friend Mark Hume, one of J & C's YD supporters, had just had a terrible crash on his bike and broke his neck! He was in the hospital awaiting surgery for the next day and was taking any calls from his friends and family. So both J & C were able to give him a call that night and give Mark their love, prayers and encouragement. Looks like God used their "delayed one more night" time to give them an opportunity to love on their friend Mark.
  So the next morning, after a large blueberry pancake, eggs and hashbrown breakfast, my parents and I drove them to the trailhead and said our goodbyes around 9am.  
"Love ya J&C! God Bless!"   -Gavin