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Sunday, April 29, 2018

PCT - Day 10: 4/28/18 - Idyllwild

Trail miles: 9.8 from 159.8 - 168.6  (re-route on Spitler trail due to fire closure up to 178.0.) Miles hiked: 15.1
Morning View
The sunrise landed a few rays of sun on me as I was finishing packing up my isolated camp.

I made myself a smoothie (thanks Packit Gourmet) for breakfast. It was delicious!

One of many lizards
I hiked the entire day without crossing paths with any other NOBO hikers. I did see a day hiker and I was catching some rays on the saddle between Apache and Spitler peaks. Mostly, I saw lots of lizards. They would climb on a rock and pose for me. Sometimes they would run down the trail in the direction I was walking so it appeared like a lizard / hiker race.

The climb up to the Spitler Trail was arduous. My energy level was low mostly due to lack of rest days and poor sleep, but partially because of feeling isolated.
On the way to Idyllwild
At the saddle with the junction of the Spitler trail, I just laid down and listened to music for an hour. I thought about my brothers, my sister, my daughter, my wife, and my puppies.

Good place for thoughts
My feet are getting worse. I had an issue with my gaiters and the sand getting in my shoes has resulted in multiple blisters.

Dusty Trail
I also rolled my right ankle twice today on the 2000 ft descent on the Spitler Trail. Once I reached Apple Valley road, I walked about a mile while hitchhiking. I finally got a ride after walking nearly a mile. The guy who picked me up was clearly very wealthy and his very old mother was in the passenger seat. She was clearly unimpressed with me. Neither of them had ever heard of the PCT. They dropped me 5 miles short of Idyllwild since they were not going that direction. The elderly lady insisted that I take a couple books to read. Both of these books spew religious bull shit, so they are now sitting in the trash can under the bathroom sink in my hotel room.

My second ride was from a thru hiker who finished the PCT in 2008.

Idyllwild Inn
Now, I’d finally reached Idyllwild where I will stay the next two nights at the Idyllwild Inn. Tomorrow I will enjoy a much needed zero day.

Upon arriving, I showered and watched in amazement as dirt just kept streaming off my body for 15 minutes. I then dried off and the towel still had large dirt spots on it. It was my first real shower in 126 miles.

I trimmed my beard a bit, and brought my clothes to the front desk to be washed. When these clothes were returned to me clean and with no grinding sand or stench, I was giddy and overwhelmed with joy. This was the first time since Mexico that my clothes have been washed.

View from Adam's beard 1
My buddy Whiplash arrived at the Inn a few minutes after I got back from the grocery store with the essentials: six pack of Mountain Dew, six pack of Firestone Union Jack, and a 1 lb brick of sharp cheddar cheese that I plan to pack out when I get back on the trail on Monday.

Now, Whiplash and I are going to go get some food and beer. I can’t quite grasp that I’m in an temperature controlled room, watching the Celtics/Bucks game 7 on TV. I can’t wait to eat something from a restaurant for dinner. I can’t wait to sleep in a bed tonight.

I have to remember all the chores I need to do on my zero day tomorrow. Flush filter, get fuel, clean/repair gear, ship bounce box, charge battery pack, buy headlamp batteries, replace the hat I lost, laundry, download latest water reports, get weather forecasts, etc.

I will get back on trail Monday on the other side of the fire closure. I’ll only be 2485 miles from Canada at that point. There’s snow in the forecast for Tues/Wed.

1.  This is the editor's way to see if anybody is actually reading this.  Comment if you do.


  1. Wishing you a good rest and healing feet. There are two other bloggers I came across that are also in Idyllwild. One is a German woman and you need Google translate to read her blog: The other is a couple staying at the same inn you are at. Their blog is at:

  2. I read your caption. It was actually a photo from the Spitler trail of the burn area from a fire a few years ago.

  3. Hope you can rest up and heal for the next leg of the trail. Also hoping your intestinal problems have cleared up. I totally look forward to reading your adventures every day. It makes me feel like I'm right there with you (albeit without the blisters, pain, etc). Love you.

    1. Yes, my stomach is better now. Just blisters and a rolled right ankle are the latest body related challenges. I’m glad you’re reading and enjoying this. Seeing comments like this make the 20-30 minutes I spend writing in my tent each night worth it. Love you mom!

  4. I'm enjoying the read and sending you good vibes! Thank you for keeping us all posted.

  5. Reading this in retrospect. Cool blog, entertaining and with some excellent info & insights. Kudos to the the cooties who took the "View from Adam's beard shot." ;)