My mood had much improved by wake-up in the morning. While waiting for the hut guests to eat, I went down to the falls and lay on the granite, relaxing while the water rushed past a few feet away, then poured over the rocks in a series of falls. It was very similar to Sioux Falls, save for the type of rocks.
A short day. A pattern was beginning to emerge – short day, long day, short day. Some kind of hiker SOS? Maybe! This one was only 4 or 5 miles; I stopped early because I was rain-scared, and thought I saw dark clouds coming in. I did not want to get my other set of clothing wet. Even when not raining… the path would push through short pines at the altitude I was at. The effect was similar to the side brushes in a carwash. Constant cold wet brushes. Eeesh.
So, anyway, I stopped early, even though the path from Zeeland Falls was quite easy. I was of two minds about this, but I lay down to take a nap, slept longer than planned, and that settled it. Apparently a moose came and went at the pond while I was asleep. Very annoying.
Later, other hikers arrived and my mood improved. There were also two groups – one of trail maintainers, and a younger, mixed-sex group. The latter was fascinated by the leeches in the pond – myself and a Canadian section hiker were down there chatting and enjoying the pond views, particularly at sunset, but peace and quiet were not to be found for a while. Still, I did get some beautiful reflection shots before heading back up to the shelter. Very rocky terrain!
The shelter was almost full that night, and there were several tenters as well. This was an unusual shelter – the cooking area was pretty far away from the shelter, and covered with a tarp. Also, one of the groups was CHOPPING UP FRESH VEGETABLES RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME AND MY MOUTH WATERED UNCONTROLLABLY.
Ah, yes. Caps lock got stuck. Really. I was perfectly happy with boiling water poured into a pasta side. Really…
I hiked on.