Jacob Leistra / "Game Boy" / PCT 2019

Day 76: Belden And Sunset Campout

Mile 1274.7 -> Mile 1307.3

What a weird day. I got out of the ridge from Quincy and started a long but gorgeous downhill into Belden. I had heard there was an “event” there, but nothing would prepare me for what was going on.

I just happened to be passing through during Sunset Campout, a small but formidable electronic music festival being hosted along the Feather River and right on Belden. I got to hike through the things of people and feel normal/square for the first time. There were multiple art installations, music stages, and bits of interesting festival accoutrements. Most notably, the people were there to party and were dressed as such. For once the guy in super short running shorts was not out of place.

I quickly met a guy name Kyle who wanted to talk forever about spending a month in his car and living in Portland. He was a nice guy, and even bought me coffee, but he didn’t really get that I was in a hurry to jam through this crowded area. It’s weird–ive been to many concerts and events with huge groups of people, but I couldn’t wait to gtfo this place. Maybe it was the isolation that the trail brings.

The rest of the day was a heinous climb from ~2200 ft. to ~7000 ft. over 14 miles. It was hot and nearly unbearable, but I did it. So much for NorCal being easy.

Main Photo: A view of the Feather River in Belden with a small glimpse at the party below on July 26.