Although I didn't make it out of camp by my goal time of 5:30, I did get out before the others by 6. I hiked and hiked and hiked, and suddenly, I was at my water source half an hour before I was expecting, 20 minutes before my original goal schedule: awright! If there hadn't been a sign, I would have blown right past it, I wasn't even looking yet. I celebrated by wasting time there until I was right back on schedule. It felt really nice to stop for lunch right at 12:00, right when and where I wanted to be, with nobody waiting for me, already halfway through their lunch. In fact, nobody caught up to me until I was packing up to move on according to schedule- and it was neither Micro nor 16, it was Gnar, back on the trail and going strong.
Around 5:30 or 5:45, I hit the trail junction that my databook said was 1.1 miles before our water source and camp spot. Yes! Sweet 16 caught up to me by 6:00, and we got to a little creek with great camping by 6:20. We dropped our packs, and celebrated our goood work by washing our feet in the water. Microburst came at 6:30 to burst our bubble: the data book was wrong, the true Honeymoon Creek was 2.5 miles after our little seasonal creeklet.
Despite our already long hike (20 or 22.5 miles) to do before the Crater Lake Post Office closes, we decided to stay here: end a good day on a good note. Unfortunately, everybody is going to try to get out really early in the morning too. I'm wondering if my "mental problems" are a self-fulfilling prophecy: if I'm behind, I feel I must be going slow, so I do. Tooday I broke that pattern, by leaving early and staying ahead.