Thursday, June 28, 2007

Day 34 - Tuesday, June 26

I've decided to join up with Wisconsin Kurt for the Sierra section coming up. I want to start doing higher mileage and think that Kurt can do 25-30 mile days. Litsl decided to head out last night about 5 PM with Dude, Tracy, and Champ since they would be going at a pace that he would be more comfortable with.

I waited to see if my watch would come today but it didn't so I asked the guy at the store to forward it to Muir Trail Ranch. Kurt has a good watch with an altimeter that we can use. I was going to do a bounce box but decided to just send my box back home and let Jerry send gear I need back in my resupply boxes. I've gotten my pack weight down to 18-20 lbs by offloading items. I will need to carry a lot less water and I am sending home my steripen since I drink the water from here through Yosemite without treating it. I will have Jerry bring it to me in Tuolumne.
I forgot to congratulate all the finishers at Western States on Sunday, especially my friends, Andy Kumera and Xy Weiss. I think both are doing the grand slam this year. Good luck at Vermont. Jerry paced a runner who finished his 15th WS under 24 hours.

From here to Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite is 241 miles which is about 9% of the total PCT mileage but has over 20% of the total elevation gain and loss - and that doesn't even include going up and down Mt Whitney which is not on the PCT. This section doesn't look as extreme as the Southern CA elevation map but it is because of the scale. We go over 6 peaks that are 11,000 feet or higher. We plan to summit Whitney (14,494') which will add about 15 miles (roundtrip) to our hike. Kurt also has a resupply at Independence over on Hwy 395. It is about 24 miles (one way) off trail over Kearsage Pass and down through Onion Valley. We haven't decided if we will take that time off trail or not. If we do and are lucky, we could catch a ride from Onion Valley to Independence and back. That would cut the distance in half both ways. I won't have any cell reception until probably Reds Meadow near Mammoth Lakes unless we go into Independence so I am listing my expected itinerary in case anyone wants to try to come out and join me. Although, it will probably be difficult to connect with me between here and Reds Meadow if you can't catch me in Independence. This will likely be my last blog post for several days.

"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks."
John Muir

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Days 31-33 - Sat-Mon, June 23-25

WooHoo! Made it to Kennedy Meadows on Monday. The end of the desert & water challenges. I've completed the Southern Calif section: 702.8 miles down - less than 2000 miles to go!

The two days getting here were uneventful. I could tell we were finally in the Sierras since we were passing streams with water - Joshua Tree spring, Spanish Needle Creek, and Fox Mill Spring. I started the descent down Rockhouse Basin and spent a few miles hiking along the south fork of the Kern River. Not much water in it because of the low snow year.

We set up camp near the store. The store is only 0.7 miles off the trail. There are about 20 hikers here - Swan, Loon, Junk Food, Muir, Bastian, Dude, Tracy, Champ and Wisconsin Curt are some I met. I actually remembered meeting Wisconsin Curt last year when I was on the JMT and he was doing the PCT. The hikers are all enjoying this place, some have been here for a few days recovering from the desert and some are jumping back in for the trek north. Everybody has a much-welcomed resupply box here. My resupply box, foot tape, and new Atalanta skirt were all here but not my new Suunto watch. I haven't had cell phone reception since Walkers Pass and still don't. I have a phone card that Jerry put in my resupply box so I can make a couple of calls from the local public phone but really can't contact many people or send any pictures for my blog. :-(

I was able to get cleaned up, do some e-mail, read all the comments and good wishes on my blog, and just enjoy a lazy day with people around to talk with about our trail experiences. Some campers really run up big bills at the KM store. A really popular item is ice cream - some hikers eat several pints. Since I don't eat ice cream, I got off cheap.
I'm really happy to get new clothes to wear. I'm wearing my new Atalanta Inspiration skirt that was designed after I tried Heather's (the owner/designer) other skirt and gave her some suggestions. Jerry sent me a bouquet of lavender blossoms with a new haiku in my box. I got my new Tarptent Contrail that Jerry bought to replace my old tent. It is really cool and has a floor! It is only listed as a 1 ½ person tent which means one person plus gear. Wisconsin Curt has been stuck here for 4 days waiting for his resupply box to arrive so I shared my tent with him. We both fit fine so we figured that we only add up to 1 ½ persons. I guess the fact the he is 5' 6" and 140 lbs and I am down to 107 lbs helps! LOL!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Day 30 - Friday, June 22

My friend, Chris Rios from Ridgecrest (ultrarunner, Race Director and Pres. of Over The Hill Track Club) came to Walkers Pass to meet us and bring us food and supplies. He also invited Linda Dewees (completed her 1st 100 Miler at AC last year) and Corky Furnish (another bad ass old school ultrarunner). I got to Walkers pass earlier than planned since I did 18 miles in under 7 hours. Litsl was about 3 hours behind me. I also meet a hiker, Angie and her dog, Momma who hitched in because the heat was getting to Momma so they were camped waiting for her boyfriend to pick up Momma.

Well, Chris took many great pictures so here is his report with his pictures.

Catra had phone service around 2 pm or so on Thursday. She said she would most likely be at Walkers Pass around 2:30 or 3 pm on Friday. I asked again what I might bring her. Made a list to go shopping on Friday. I called her again on Friday while at the market for any last minute request. I ended up getting her fruit, lemonade, potato chips, corn chips, salsa, water and clif bars/gels. She also asked if I had a pad for sleeping for her companion Carl. His was shot. Turns out he had slept a couple of nights on the bare ground. I happen to have one so I brought that along also. Oh and Carl wanted Coke. I brought two bottles for him.
Well, I left my house about 1 pm, drove to get my car gassed up and bought some ice for my cooler and for a 5 gal. Gatorade container. Arrived at the Walkers Pass campg
round about 10 minutes to 2 and as I parked and let my two dogs out of the car I heard Catra's voice yelling at me. She had arrived way ahead of the time she thought she would be getting there by. She said she was really moving fast. She was on the trail by herself as she had left alone that morning. When she had all her stuff down I asked her for a big hug.

Catra looked so good, you wouldn't thought that she had been going for so many days and miles. She looked pretty damn fresh.

Well, my friend Linda Dewees had gotten there before me and had gone up the trail and told me she met Catra about a mile from the camp site. Not much of a workout for her as she is running the Tahoe Rim Trail 100 and later the Wasatch 100. I parked at a spot that had a table and some shade. Catra was up the hill a ways and brought all of her stuff down to where I parked.
A little after unloading all the food stuff and drinks a girl comes by and asked, "well who's Catra". She met Catra and ended up hanging with us all the while that I stayed. I think her name was Angie from Truckee. She had been hiking the PCT with her 4 year old dog but had left the trail. I forget at what point because it was just to hot and she couldn't carry enough water for her and her dog. She hitched a ride to Walkers Pass and was waiting for her boy friend to pick up her dog. She would continue hiking the PCT to the end.
Way later, I forget what time it was, Carl shows up. He is a Brit and is a fun guy. Turns out he knew me as he had ran our Ridgecrest 50k last year. His is an Ultrarunner and has done a number of Ultra's. We all had a fun time hanging. Between Catra, Carl and Angie I heard lots of fun stories of their adventure up to Walkers Pass.

I left a little after 6 PM.... Chris

Wow, it was so fun to see all of you.The food and drinks were great. Chris, you are the best!

We are camped at Mile 651 and will start our 2-day push tomorrow to Kennedy Meadows.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Days 28 & 29 - Weds & Thurs, June 20-21

When we were in Hikertown, I ordered a new watch that will be delivered to Kennedy Meadows. I bought a Suunto Vector in violet to match my hair. ;-)
It will be nice to have a watch on my wrist again instead of in my pack. I also ordered a tyvek sheet for litsl to use under his thermorest pad. He counted 8 holes in his pad from the rocks. It doesn't hold air so he hasn't been comfortable sleeping for several nights. My friend, Chris is bringing him a foam pad to use when we get to Walkers Pass.
We had a little section of forest this morning as a tease but then we were back in the exposed terrain of the past several days. We have been steadily climbing and are now consistently at 6000'. We have finished four waterless legs, each 13 to 18 miles long. Every hiker looks forward to the water caches at Golden Oak Spring, Robin Bird Spring, Kelso Valley Road Cache, and Bird Spring Pass Cache between miles 583 and 631. But we didn't have the problem with lack of water like we did further south.

We will be at Kennedy Meadows all day on Monday, June 25 if anyone wants to come out to see us. It will give us a chance to get our resupply and wash our clothes.
I want to send my best wishes to all my friends running and pacing at Western States on Saturday/ Sunday. In my original plan I had hoped to be on trail there for the race. I hope the race conditions are better than last year for the runners.

I have to say how disappointed I am in the PCT hikers who are leaving their trash on the trail. There are empty bottles, food wrappers, broken gear, etc everywhere. Litsl has been taking pictures of all the trash. One hiker left a cardboard box with some excess food for other hikers to take but now the empty box is just laying on the trail.

We will camp at mile 634 Thursday night near the highest point just under 7000' before we reach Walkers Pass. I think we will catch several hikers soon - Hustle & Flow, Springing Jenny & Loon. Litsl is hanging tough. He has done 189 miles since joining me. He is suffering with blisters on his feet but is dealing with them. When he has reception on his cell is posting to his blog from his phone. A link to his blog is under my links.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Day 27 - Tuesday, June 19

We left Mojave at 8 am to get back to the trail. We have been seeing so many Joshua trees, I began to feel like this was a ride at Disneyland called "Hiking the Mojave" and the joshua trees were moving and we were sitting on a ride watching them pass. After getting back on trail in the heat, I knew this wasn't Disneyland!
We were walking along Hwy 58 and getting the passing truckers to honk their horns by giving them the universal up-and-down arm signal. It helps pass the time.
Today we are still passing more windmills. We met a hiker from Walnut Creek named Joe who rides 400 mile bike races. He is a world traveler and has hiked Europe.
By the end of the day we were at mile 580 and technically in the southern Sierras. We are looking forward to moderate temperatures and cooler nights that lie ahead. Plus we will make the 600 mile mark tomorrow and the end of the Southern Calif section. I called Jerry to contact my friend, Chris Rios who is going to meet us at Walkers Pass. Still having spotty phone reception.

Days 25 & 26 - Sunday & Monday, June 17-18

Today we started crossing the Mojave. We walked along a dirt road adjacent to the LA aqueduct. We are looking to do 20 miles today. The aqueduct was flat and hot and seemed like it would go on forever. We were glad to find some water at Cottonwood Creek Bridge. We made camp after 16 miles for the night and had a hot winds all night.

On Monday, we started out to the same landscape, heat and lack of water. We ended walking along the windmills of the Tehachapi Wind Farm for a couple of hours.
We had passed about 7-10 hikers as we got near Hwy 58 and decided to head into the town of Mojave to get a shower, food and get out of the heat. We were able to catch a ride the 12 miles to town. After hiking 24 miles today, we were at mile 558. My phone reception is really spotty so I go for several hours without service.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Day 24 - Saturday, June 16

Here's a picture that my friend, Andy took when I was coming down Mt Baden Powell to meet him. I was happy to see Andy! He took one of us together but it didn't turn out for some unknown reason. :-(

Today was a long dry day. There are 3 hikers named Hustle, Flow and Colin that we expect to catch soon. We did see this bush with these pretty blossoms. I don't know what it was, maybe lilacs, but took a picture since the color matched my braids. LOL!
I had to hike this ugly section of about 7 miles that is a lot longer that it needs to be with an overgrown path and bad trail bed because some rancher won't let the PCT cross his land so we have to go around. Litsl is about 2 hours behind.
My Highgear watch band broke - the plastic part where the pin fits into cracked! This is the third watch this has happened to. Jerry repaired the first one about 2 years ago but it only held for a short time. I got the watch free since they're one of my sponsors so I'm not losing anything but it's a nightmare having to keep it in my pack and take it out to check elevation when I am climbing. I'm going to buy a different kind of watch.
As I am leaving this section, I'm sad because my friend, Kevin that I met last year on the JMT won't be able to come out and see me. He normally has Fridays off but had to work a 12 hour shift at LAPD. We have gone way past the area where he could come out.
Here I am in the afternoon totally dehydrated and looking pretty cooked in this hot section heading toward Hwy 138. We had to go all day without any water refills.
Litsl was about 3 hours behind by 6pm when I arrived at Hikertown. No one was there except me and this kitty who was visiting with me. I set up camp on a lawn and waited for litsl to show up about 9pm. We did 28 miles and are at mile 518.
I talked to Tattoo Joe and we both know we won't be able to get the speed records that we were trying for. We decided that we will team up in 2009 and give the record another try. I am still going to try for the women's record of 91 days but it doesn't matter how long it takes me, I am going to finish. Some hikers were saying that people who try for records usually quit if they can't get the record. NOT ME, I am out here until the end!

Day 23 - Friday, June 15

Me and Carl hiked on Thursday night under nice temperatures. We came on this skunk on the trail that decided to hike in front of us for about a half mile. It didn't seem to mind us so we weren't too afraid of it spraying us. We slept for a couple of hours next to the trail in a ditch and got an early start to avoid the heat. In the morning we came to this Leona Divide 50 mile sign that lists all the winners since 1992. I was surprised that the markings are still up from the race in April and there was still fresh flour arrows in places.

Carl complained about his trail name so he's going to use his climbing name from Tahoe, litsl ( life in the slow lane!) because he is such a slow climber.
We hiked for about 3 hours on this lame trail but finally came upon a water cache with pink flamingoes, skeletons, and a hanging dummy. This cache is maintained by the Andersons.

We took a break from the trail for two hours to head down to Joe and Terry Anderson's place. It is really wacky, pretty much like what the Hippie communes in the 60's probably were like. There is a wall with all the names and drawing on it. Normally, Terry surprises every hiker by mooning them but their daughter was having a baby so she was gone. So Joe said he would take her place while she was gone.
You can probably guess now why their place is called Casa De Luna! LOL! Like Green Day sings in American Idiot, this place is a "subliminal mind f--k"!

I met this hiker, Rambo who has been waiting to meet me. He has a friend who runs ultras who has wanted to meet me for a couple of years. Rambo has giardiasis and is taking a few days off to recover. He may get to Kennedy Meadows and then go north to Washington and do the upper section so he doesn't get caught in snow later.
Joe said each hiker has to put on a costume so he can take their picture. I looked around and found a hula skirt and decided that I would be a Tahitian hula dancer. Joe said he didn't have one of those pictures so he snapped this one of me and Rambo with his eyes bugging out. He said his friend is going to be SO jealous!. LOL!

We got back on trail and reached mile 490 before setting up camp. About 9 pm a hiker we had passed earlier, the French Guy (not Julien!) showed up and is camping by us. So I'm talking on the phone and litsl gets up and moves away... then I realize why... he left me smelling his "scent" - must have got that from our friendly little skunk last night - ppeewww! ;-)

Friday, June 15, 2007

Days 21 & 22 - Weds & Thurs, June 13-14

Got an early start today. By 6:45AM it was already 80° on the trail.I met a couple that had passed Lon on the trail. I texted him and he is at mile 413. I am at mile 446. Maybe I'll see him at Agua Dulce.

I arrive at Agua Dulce at 10AM. I went to the Sauffly's Hiker Heaven to meet Jeff (J-Rod) and Donna (L-Rod for lightning rod). We have been waiting two years to meet. It was worth the wait, I love them. Their place is really cool. They have just about everything for the PCT hikers - two vehicles for us to drive, 6 bikes, a trailer for hikers to sleep, showers, computers for internet access, loaner clothes while you're here, & spare trail shoes and gear from other hikers. They pick up people from the airport in Santa Clarita. Wow, what amazing people! Carl is here waiting for me.
Trailer, Loaner Closet, Extra Hiker Supplies

Here I am with Big Red which I drove into Santa Clarita to get some supplies.

Me on one of their bikes

There are 9 other PCT hikers here. I met a plastic surgeon and his wife. He is going to leave the PCT because he got a great offer from Stanford Hospital that he can't let pass. He was 1 of 3 Drs chosen out of 100. He'll just have to come back later and finish.

Health check: After getting cleaned up, I weighed myself. I have lost 9 lbs total which is good since I had the biggest weight loss by Day 13. I am at least maintaining my weight for this week. I am feeling good. My shoulders have gotten used to my pack. No leg or feet problems. (Crossfit Rocks!) No blisters at all. I am not taping right now because I am out of elastikon tape. My friend, Mike Palmer is sending a roll for me to Kennedy Meadows. I have new Hardrock shoes in my resupply that are 1/2 size larger so my feet should be fine crossing the Mojave.
Here I am leaving my old hardrocks in the spare trail equipment bins, 454 miles is enough for me but maybe someone else will need them.

Me and Carl discussed our plan and decided to hang here overnight and through the heat of the day tomorrow. We will leave at 5 PM on Thursday, travel 7 to 12 hours at night and then rest on Friday during the heat.

Here are some of the hikers I met, posing outside the trailer as we are getting ready to leave. Becca (who is having some issues so her boy friend went on and she is going to jump back in at Kennedy Meadows); me; Bison; Lon (he arrived on Thursday and will lay over a couple of days); and Carl.
I gave Carl his trail name: High Maintenance. LOL! He doesn't like it but, dude, his pack weighs 40 lbs. He is carrying way too much, he'll see!
As we leave Agua Dulce on Thursday evening, we see this woman riding a camel. Only in AD! Makes me think of Marathon de Sable and the desert ahead. Well I finished MdS so, Mojave, I'm ready for you! ;-)

Day 20 - Tuesday, June 12

Moving along Mt Gleason's north ridge I can see the MoJave desert below to the northeast and know what's ahead for me after Agua Dulce. But today I'm just focused on moving quickly so I can reach AD tomorrow morning early. About 8am I'm sort of daydreaming and HOLY S--T! I come within 2 feet of stepping on a rattlesnake laying in the middle of the trail. :-O
I jumped back just in time and then went around it. Better keep my eyes open!
By Noon I am at mile 431 and having fun! I know that I will make 30 miles today.
I stopped at this campground where there were all of these derelicts camping out. I wasn't sure that I wanted to hang around there but this older Korean woman came over to talk to me. She has a fruit stand nearby and gave me a peach and a Korean melon. She told me that she sees most of the PCT thru-hikers that come through so she knows which ones will finish. She looks at me and says, "you girlie, you are going to finish, I know". She told me to set up my camp in the middle of this lot and no one will bother me because she will watch out for me.

I just remembered that my niece, Tiffany got married in Hawaii today. Congrats Tiff and Sam!
Wish I could have been there. They are coming to California before Sam gets deployed to Iraq. I hope to see them when I pass through Tahoe.

Here is what I did the last two days on the elevation map. I am at mile 443.

Positive Brain Food: It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that they are difficult…. (Seneca)

Day 19 - Monday, June 11

Having camped at 7500', I start the morning on rolling terrain dropping to 6000’ through wooded hills over the next 10 miles.

The Angeles Crest Highway is closed from Islip Saddle to Cedar Springs due to a landslide last year. The PCT is closed from just east of the Cedar Springs gate and is rerouted along the Angeles Crest Highway for about 2 miles due to the protection of the Mountain Yellow Frog. I had heard that some hikers were getting lost here but I just walked down this deserted highway to get back to the trail.

It's pretty lonely in this section as I haven't seen anyone for most of the day. I finally stopped at mile 413 and set up camp. I've started just adding water to my powdered hummus and eating out of my bowl. With the heat, the corn tortillas were just disintegrating in my pack and I'm out of Wasa crackers.
I'm feeling good and I'm not really sunburned. My phone camera makes my face look red in the pictures. Jerry told me to switch to a higher resolution for better quality pictures.

Day 18 - Sunday, June 10

I started this morning at 6500' and have been climbing up to Mt Baden Powell at 9399'. There is a plaque at the top for Baden Powell who was the founder of the Boy Scouts and had a great love for hiking and camping. I counted 93 hikers coming down from Mt Baden Powell. I am familiar with this section since I have run Angeles Crest 100 mile race. It does look different since I'm hiking and not running and have time to look around.

Near Vincent Gap I passed this sign -
373 miles behind, only 2277 ahead! :-)

I am traveling along Angeles Crest and Hwy 2. My friend, Andy Kumeda, who I know from running several 100 milers down here, met me near Islip Saddle on Hwy 2. He had worked a 50K race in the morning and then drove 4 hours to meet me. He brought me a cool card that was signed by lots of the ultrarunners and brought me cold lemonade, water and apples. Yum! Andy, you rock!

I passed a man & woman thru-hikers from Salt Lake City. I set up camp for the night near Angeles Crest Hwy at mile 383. The SLC hikers came through planning to hike another 2-3 miles before setting up camp. I'll probably see them tomorrow or at Agua Dulce.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Day 17 - Saturday, June 9

Getting ready for the trail today. I've started eating my oatmeal right out of the packet. I just pour in water, stir and eat. Saves having to clean my bowl afterwards. ;-) Now to throw my home on my back and I'm out of here!

I headed down into a highway services area near Cajon/ Hwy 15 to a McDonalds that is only .4 miles off trail to get a cold drink and charge my phone where I met a 2006 PCT hiker, Girl Scout. He told me that he was just coming back from a trip to the Liberace Museum in Las Vegas. He highly recommended it. He said he's been following my blog. I was telling him about the sketchy section of trail I was on yesterday. He said that is the section where No Way Ray, a well known PCT Hiker and writer, fell to his death last year. He also told me that where I saw the weird guy was where Charles Manson and his "family" used to hang out. Maybe that guy was the last of the Manson family! LOL! Whew, glad I'm through there!

Picture courtesy of Terri Steele-

Got a message from Lon that he went to Wrightwood. I am skipping my resupply at Wrightwood so it looks like I will get ahead of him. Tattoo Joe left a message that he just left Agua Dulce 2 days ago.

Had an uneventful, relatively easy day. I'm having to carry 6-8 liters of water so my pack is heavy. As I was setting up camp, I could hear and see lots of jeeps and 4-wheelers driving up this dirt road. I'm wondering what they are doing way out here - going camping, I guess.

I am camping at mile 357 at this perfect site on top of this little ridge at 6500'. I'm just east of Gobber's Knob - funny name, huh.

Here I am in camp at sunset. You can see the valley I will be hiking above tomorrow in the south end of the San Gabriel Mountains.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Days 15 & 16 - Thursday & Friday, June 7-8

Got back on trail to find it's still windy but not bad. I caught up to a section hiker named Lorax who is just going to Agua Dulce and stopping for this year and then will do another section next year. He does 10 miles per day. He lives in Auburn and hikes on the Western States trail sometimes. He likes taking pictures of the trail for his relatives back East.

The first eight miles are at 7500' then I start descending into some canyons. I'm weaving in and out of these super hot, long canyons for what seems like forever. Sometimes the trail is hard to find but I am following Lon's footprints since he is wearing Montrail hardrocks. So I just search around until I find his prints. Jerry did the same thing on the first day when he was running backwards from Lake Morena since two of the boys are wearing hardrocks. I knew I loved hardrocks! LOL!
I caught up to this guy with his ass hanging out of his pants and acting pretty strange. He was carrying a rolling suitcase on his back like a pack with an indian blanket and a gallon jug of water strapped on top. I just passed what looked like a homeless encampment with a smoldering fire. I'm really nervous about this weirdo so I take off running for a couple of miles through the canyon to get away from him.
As I neared mile 313, I started looking for a place to camp. It is really windy and there aren't any good places to camp. I finally decided to camp right next to the trail.

On Friday morning I awoke to find my sleeping bag wet on the outside. I had put my waterproof tarp over me because of the wind and the condensation from my body heat and the hot ground couldn't escape. At least the inside wasn't wet. I had to hike a few miles across these sand trails on the side of the canyons that were really narrow. The footing was bad and I had to use my trekking poles just to keep my balance. It was really sketchy! One mis-step and I could fall off the edge and no one would find me.
After about 8 miles, I came to an overlook of this huge lake. The trail started down towards it and then followed the shoreline for several miles. It is Lake Silverwood. The largest lake I've seen down here since I've done Angeles Crest, San Diego and other ultra races. Of course, it isn't as big as Lake Tahoe which is 165 miles around on the TRT. As I passed several little beach and camping areas, I could see lots of boats on the lake pulling water skiers, people BBQing, and just having fun. And no, guys, I didn't go skinny dipping! Probably should have though ;-) I came to a campground but decided to skip it for my night camp.

Here I am eating a peach and apple that I got from a cooler the trail angels put out. Was I glad to find it. The fruit tasted so yummy! I know where they get their name, they are definitely angels in my book.

Lon had called and said he was 10 miles from Cajon/ Hwy 15. I figure that I am 20 miles away. Hey Lon, I'm still carrying your sunscreen. I'm getting on trail by 5:50 these mornings so I could catch him by Agua Dulce.
Tattoo Joe called and still wants to hike with me. He told me he isn't doing the yoyo but some eastern loop after he reaches Canada that no one has done before. I still think I am too far behind him.

I reached mile 332 before setting up camp for the night at 3800'. Here is the elevation profile of my trip for my last 2 days.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Day 14 - Wednesday, June 6

I got up this morning and got ready to hit the trail. Ed, the owner of Nature's Inn who was giving me a ride, said there was 35-50 mph winds on the mountain I was going to cross. The winds had been fairly bad yesterday when I came down and I was thinking about Lon having to camp in high winds. Ed convinced me that heading out in these winds would be a bad idea. I hate losing another day but don't want to do anything stupid either.
He drove me into town to get some things. Turns out his wife is in alcohol recovery so I ended up telling him my experiences and gave him advice about how to be supportive of her. They just bought the hotel 9 months ago and are still trying to get settled in. He has had 400 PCT hikers through this season. I got a room at Nature's Inn for the night and spent some time on e-mail and My Space.

Day 13 - Tuesday, June 5

Here I am checking my maps in the morning for my trip to Big Bear City. I only have about 10 miles to go so I should get there by Noon. It should be an easier hike since I stay between 8000' and 6700'. I found a couple of water caches stocked by Nature's Inn people so I have plenty of water. I'm feeling good today after getting dehydrated the last two days.

Talked to Carl from Tahoe. He is getting his gear and supplies together to meet me at Agua Dulce in a few days. He is here on a work visa and has to leave the US to go back to England on August 24. He's wondering if he can make Canada by then and just goes into Canada, does that count as leaving the US and then he can come back? I met Grizzly Adams on the trail (JK). This old guy looked just like him. He was hiking with a couple of huskies. He found a nickel and I found a quarter on the trail. I believe that finding money on the trail means that my Mom is watching over me. I also saw two bears - but they were in a cage in this backyard I passed.

As I got close to the place I would leave the trail I caught up to Lon Cooper. He had stayed two days at the hotel in Big Bear City and was heading out. As we talked, he noticed he had lost his sun screen. I told I would pick up some and would likely catch him in the day or two and would give it to him. We decided that when I catch him we will hike together to Cajon / Hwy 15 if he can do 25 miles a day.

I caught a ride into Big Bear City from the owner of Nature's Inn, a really nice guy. He said he would drive me back to the trail head tomorrow morning. That will save me the 3 mile walk from and to the trail head. I got a room at the Mission Creek Hostel. They had a single room for $40 but I decided to go into the shared room with this guy hiker for $20. It was nice to get all the dirt off my body (you should have seen the tub!) and wash my salty clothes! I have lost 8 lbs since starting. I left the trail at Mile 274.