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Oudeis - Pacific Crest Trail Journal - 2011

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Lawman
City: Laguna Niguel
State: CA
Country: USA
Begins: May 15, 2011
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Mon, May 16th, 2011
Start: Just Shy of Fobes
End: Saddle Junction 178.8
Daily Distance: 14
Trip Distance: 29.0
Hours Hiked: 10

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 598
Journal Visits: 5,120
Guestbook Views: 356
Guestbook Entrys: 1

Last PLB Location

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Pacific Crest Trail Map

Fobes to Idyllwild

Monday I awoke to slightly lower winds, but still very cold temps. Half awake and in the middle of stretching outside my tent for my boots, a booming hiker's voice came down from the trail from about 30 feet above my campsite. "What a night" he said. "That was coooold," he said as he raised his hands in the air holding his poles up for emphasis. He had camped at Cedar Springs and got so tired of shivering through the night he decided to get up before sunrise and get moving to build up heat. I think he was mad. I never caught his name.

After freezing my fingers off trying to stuff everything back in my pack (including a frozen water bottle), I headed off down the trail with my gloved hands gripping cold aluminum poles & expecting improving weather so that I could warm up. I really thought I had remembered the long term forecast to involve one weak front coming for one day then sunshine & warming trend for the following days. I would soon find out that was either very wrong, or had changed drastically since I read it. When I got to Fobes, I snapped a pic of Trail Ratz chairs and his "kitchen" in the shade of some scrub oak & moved on thinking those chairs would look really inviting on a hot day in mid-May. Weather seemed to be improving, but that also seemed to depend on whether the trail was running leeward or windward of the ridges. Windward was still very windy & chilly, & things just were not warming up.

Somewhere between San Jacinto Crest and Andreas Canyon, I met again with Pat Whyte and Lake to Lake, two of the hikers I had met Sunday on the trail. They were slack packing from Idyllwild/Devil's Slide to Cedar Springs where they had stopped the day before and they were completing the section they had missed Sunday due to weather. Lake to Lake gave me bad news about a weather alert for the local mountains. High winds and snow above 6500 ft. for the next two days with snow possible in Idyllwild. "See," she said pointing to the West, "the clouds are already building." Wonderful. They both suggested that I should try to make it up to Saddle Junction and then down the hill to Idyllwild. So much for my resolution to go steady & slow. And as if I needed more convincing, a young German through hiker moving fast came up behind me. He had also seen the alert, and suggested I try to make it to Idyllwild. Did I look that bad? I told the legs to pick up the pace, & they did their best.

After steadily climbing to 8,400 feet just past Andreas Canyon, the trail turns west toward Saddle Junction and is mainly a gentle downhill run for the next several miles. The westerly downhill track encouraged me that I would make it to Idyllwild no later than 7PM even if there were no rides down the hill from Humber Park Trailhead (aren't there always rides there?). Along that down-hill section there are still large swaths of snow straddling the trail. In my encouraged state, each patch became an opportunity for mini-glissading & acting foolish.

Thanks for reading,

Rich

C 2011 All rights reserved

Entry 4 of 5
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150 Days & Nights On The Pacific Crest Trail

"...is the picture a tenth of the thing? A hundredth? Is it anything without the smell and salt breeze and the yellow warmth when the fog lifts? Oh, but I got all that too. It is exposed forever on the sensitive emulsion sheet of my mind." Terry and Renny Russell, On the Loose 1967

 

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