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Mike564 - Pacific Crest Trail Journal - 2014

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Mike "Driver" Rumsey
City: Los Angeles
State: CA
Country: USA
Begins: Apr 16, 2014
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Sun, Apr 20th, 2014
Start: Mile 42.6 Mount Laguna
End: Mile 55.9
Daily Distance: 13.3
Trip Distance: 55.9

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 553
Journal Visits: 5,596
Guestbook Views: 314
Guestbook Entrys: 7

Pacific Crest Trail Map

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It's Easter, Apparently.

We woke up at 4:50 and started packing. We both took quick showers so we'd be as clean as possible on the trail. Hygiene on the trail is actually a huge deal. If you don't stay clean you'll start developing the dreaded rash known as "Monkey Butt." We do our best to stay clean using a combination of soap and water and wet wipes. Another big issue is chafing between your thighs. I've been suffering from this a bit and I'm doing my best to treat it using Desitin.

I any event, the morning was breathtaking. We hit the trail at 6 AM and went through a huge variety of blooming wildflowers. I snapped photos as quick as I could (still no way to upload them yet) as Natalia caught up behind me. The birds were singing and we saw two different types of woodpecker. With a gentle downhill slope and the cool of the morning, the miles just passed by.

We ate a fairly quick breakfast a the GATR pump and met a few more hikers. As we were packing up, Mr Cup came in tired from the trail. A hiker from Japan, his English was poor but enough to be understood. He hiked with a long staff sticking out of his bag which held a custom made flag for his journey and a cup for water given to him by his daughter. Hence his trail name - Mr. Cup. We wished him well but had to reurn to the trail before it got too hot.

Our next section was hotter but tolerable. As we walked we wondered aloud if we'd meet up with Sweet Spot and Topo who had left yesterday afternoon. How far had they gotten yesterday? Had they left early today? Were we past them or behind them? Where was Doc who had left this morning? The miles passed pretty uneventfully, arriving at the Pioneer Mail picnic area around 11 AM. We were delighted to see all three hikers when we arrived.

The picnic area was amazing. It had trees and a breeze and we napped through the heat. We ate our lunches and Natalia managed to yogi a few burgers from some of the picnic goers. We took a long break as some hikers came and went, passing into the heat of the day. We finally hit the trail at 4:40 with only a few more miles to go. The other's could have the heat, we'd rather wait it out in the shade.

We arrived in the camp among a boulder field with plenty of light left. We scouted our campsites between the thorny shrubs and eventually settled on one that was small but sheltered from the west wind. I mentally thanked the PCTHYOH (PCT Hike Your Own Hike) app on my phone for letting us cache the weather reports.

We met Blue, short for Blue Butterfly, who was hiking southbound to the kickoff. She was older and hiking solo so she was setting up her Spot device to reassure her kids. We were saddened to hear that her husband had passed a way about a month earlier. I suppose that a long hike is a good way to process difficult life changes. We chatted as she cooked our dinner and the sun set over our campsite. There were about 6 other hikers with us nestled among the boulders.

As it grew dark, we climbed under Shamu and slept easily.





Entry 7 of 9
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Journal Photo

Drag Me Into The Wild

The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a 2,650-mile national scenic trail that runs from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon and Washington. The PCT traverses 24 national forests, 37 wilderness areas and 7 national parks. The PCT passes through 6 out of 7 of North Americas ecozones. Learn more: www.pcta.org

 

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