Dave and I had hoped to get an early start on the trail. We walked down the road a short distance to a diner attached to the only gas station in Trout Lake shortly after it opened. The food wasn’t fast but it was good.
I was beginning to notice this village has its own rhythm and it isn’t fast. Besides waiting for our meals to be served last night and this morning, we waited a long time before anyone could figure out how we were going to get back to the trail. Apparently there is a loose organization of residents who share responsibilities for shuttling hikers. It usually fell to one driver, but no one seemed to know where he was today or when he would pick up hikers.
In the meantime, Dave and I did what any two old guys would do in a small village. We sat on the porch of the general store, watching people go by and making occasional comments to each other.
The store's owners normally prefer that hikers do not sit on the porch, but this was a Sunday morning and they didn’t have any business yet.
Besides, we were old, or at least I was. I think there is some kind of expectation that old guys sit on benches outside of general stores. Otherwise, why would benches be put there?
The extra time we had to wait for a shuttle gave me a chance to make plans to visit my friends John and Erik. They had offered several months ago to host me for a zero day in Portland, and in four days I will be close enough to do that.
Dave planned to meet his family when he got to Cascade Locks, then go to his home near Portland for a day or two. He kindly offered to drop me off at John and Erik’s house, which was on his way home.
After a few text messages with John, my zero day plans were set.
When Dave and I learned we had still more time to kill before our ride to the trailhead, we walked back to the cafe and ordered the cafe’s specialty drink, huckleberry milkshakes. The huckleberries were locally grown, and the shake was made thick and heavy with vanilla ice cream.