Wednesday, 3 June 2015

PCT Day 15

Day 15
Miles: 28

Man it felt so good to sleep in an actual bed. As soon as I pulled the covers over me I sank into a deep sleep. The room was so dark and must have been well sound proofed against the roaring free-way. I woke up a few times thinking it was time to get up due to the misleading darkness. My body use to the sun being it’s alarm clock. When we do wake we are slow to mobilize, getting out and heading to Mac D for breakfast. I got my usual pancakes with golden syrup and a large refillable drink, they taste good. I don’t want to know how much sugar I just consumed…

The next water cache isn’t going to be for 26 miles so I drink loads. We head out for 7am and chat briefly with Globe and Namastay under the bridge where they slept. Then the long ascent begins. It’s so foggy and the visibility is terrible all morning. I can hear freight trains but can’t see them hidden by the damp clouds. It’s a long slog up but feels good in the cooler weather.  I ascend 15 miles going from of 3500ft  to 8200 ft. Then the sun comes out at midday and I have an amazing view above the clouds. It's so dull and dismal a few feet back and right here it’s stunning. I then get a phone signal and chat to the folks back home. I sit there on the trail for a good hour. I air my feet which feels good, a habit I’m always doing now whenever I stop. Soon I realise I have to continue and hikes on. The sun is now beating down and I’m beginning to wilt. It takes me ages to hike up the beast. Poptart and I had planned to camp at highway 2 and hitch into town the next day.That was only 3 more miles, then as I’m eating my cold, soggy noodles, surveying the view I get a message.

She says a trail angel is picking us up in 2h about 8 miles from where I am. Bummer!
I scoff my food and begin to pack up just as the blond shadow arrives on time. A guy who's happens to hike passed me at this time everyday. He is a faster hiker than I so I figure he must hike half in the day, half in the night for me to always be headed somehow in the late afternoon. His name I find out is Eric. We chat briefly and he confirms my 8 mile hike. He leaves me to pack up and I jog out ten minutes later. I then hike pass him 2 miles down the trail. The scenery at dusk is amazing and I’m missing it all. Rushing and stumbling to catch up. A part of me isn’t sure (looking back) why I was so eager to catch up. I could have easily just solo camped and hitched into town the next day…it's not like I hadn't slept in a bed and showered recently.

It’s close but I think I’m going to make it. I jog on the flat and cringe on the uphill. I text Poptart how close I am but get no reply. I reach an abandoned ski resort with creaking ski lifts and random shacks. I criss cross a dirt road which is a good sign that I’m reaching civilization again.  I’m half a mile away when a car appears which beeps at me. I’m saved. I still descend pretty fast when the driver a trail angel called Mike gets out and tells me to slow down waving his hands. He loaded my pack into the boot and I clamber in, my feet are pounding with blood. I sit back relieved knowing I can rest easy.

We chat to Mike well Poptart does and I’m just so happy that I made it but also exhausted so zoned out a bit in the back. I hear them talking of his home where we can shower, be fed a proper meal, sleep. We zoom down into Wrightwood where he points out shops where we can find food, collect mail and I can buy the new shoes that I so desperately need. We arrive at his house, a family home. His dog greets him but is very distrusting of us. Then we meet Sue his wife who is rocking her grandson to sleep. She invites us in and ask what are our priories; food, shower, sleep? Those in that order! We eat a chicken dish with carrots, onion, pineapple. Mac and cheese is also on the menu which it tastes so good. I get a second helping, my body thanking me, I thank the Trail angels. I swing my legs to and fro from the chair, my feet aching from my bad shoes. We chat to the family and I gain my trail name of Yorkie. We finish up and are shown to our bunk bed and where the laundry is. I shower first and it's amazing. Even though I showered a meer 24h ago it still feels awesome after a day out in the sun. I sit in the bottom of the shower and let it rain over me, feel little guilty with the drought in California. I clean my feet which are filthy and blistered and massage them. I chill in our room, laying on the top bunk relaxed. We head to sleep at 9 ish.