Mileage: 0 (but with 35 miles of hitching)
After getting to Stevens Pass and camping by the ski school building overnight, we woke up the next morning with the plan to get into Leavenworth, which is about 35 highway miles away from Stevens Pass. Leavenworth is a touristy Bavarian themed town that has real restaurants, real hotels, and most importantly: a real grocery store. Our plan was to get into Leavenworth, resupply, and decide how to tackle the next wildfire and closure ridden section of the trail north of Stevens Pass.
From Stevens Pass, we called a bus company that runs routes along the highway and arranged for a pickup in the late morning. Luckily though, we didn’t even need the bus. About 20 minutes before the bus came, we got a ride from a really nice guy named John. Thanks John!
John dropped us off in downtown Leavenworth, and we immediately started making a game plan for how to get our town chores done. First, we went to Fresh Burger and ate a delicious lunch complete with shakes and lots of doting by the staff (they were all really nice and wanted to hear all sorts of info about our hike).
From there we booked a room at the Fairbridge Hotel, then walked several blocks to the post office to pick up a few packages that we had sent there. Unfortunately, the post office could not find our packages even though all the tracking numbers indicated that they were, in fact, there. The very nice PO worker took my number down and told me he’d look around for them more thoroughly and call me with the results.
This was a bummer, but it had a silver lining… In the process of making this scene at the post office, an extremely kind women named Heidi learned that we were thru hikers and immediately showered us with trail magic.
Heidi proceeded to give us her number, and in the most kind-hearted and earnest way, told us to call her if we needed anything. Some people just say this kind of thing, and other people mean it. It was clear to us that Heidi really meant it.
We thought that was the end of it, but after Heidi was done with her own post office chores, she found us again out front and gave us a $50 gift certificate she had been given to a fancy restaurant in town named Sulla Vita. What!? I know, crazy right?! Caitlin cried a little, I nearly fell to the floor. It was insanely generous. Thanks again Heidi!
So now we had dinner plans. Sweet!
After thanking Heidi profusely, we left the PO and walked to our hotel. They let us check in early because, you know, people just shower us with kindness on this trip. It’s really wonderful.
Our hotel room was immaculately clean and really nice overall. It had a king size bed. Caitlin was in heaven.
Next, we cleaned our clothes in the hotel’s laundry facilities (I did this in a towel and nothing else… we don’t have a change of clothes, remember?). With that done, I called Heidi and asked if she might be able to give us a ride to the grocery store and back (which was about a 2 mile round trip otherwise). It turned out that Heidi was tied up, but she got her mom to help us out in her place. What?! I know, crazy right?
Heidi’s mom Mary cheerfully picked us up about two hours later (per our request) and took us to Safeway. Mary ended up being every bit as kind and generous as her lovely daughter Heidi. What an incredibly nice family!
After the supermarket, Mary drove us back to the hotel, let us drop off our groceries, then drove us to Sulla Vita where we had our gift certificate to eat. Is that quality service or what? Thanks again Mary!
Our dinner was lovely and delicious. It was a real treat that we wouldn’t have ever experienced without the generosity of our Leavenworth trail angels Heidi and Mary. What a night!