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Sunday, May 6, 2018

PCT - Day 17: 5/5/2018 - Mixed Bag

Trail miles: 10.6 from 266.1 - 276.7
Miles hiked: 12.4
trail woodpecker
Today was a mixed bag for me. I woke up after a decent night of sleep in the most comfortable bed on the PCT. It was 6:03 am. I hated that I couldn’t sleep in anymore.

I did some last minute chores. I sewed another button onto my shirt. I ordered a silk liner for my sleeping bag for more comfort when attempting to sleep. I need sleep so bad that the extra 5 ounces is no big deal. I’m sending more gear home when I get to Wrightwood anyway. My 3oz Patagonia Houdini jacket is going home, as is a small massage ball. My extra camera battery and my Kindle are going in my bounce box.

I’m also likely replacing my jacket with a lighter and more compressible down jacket of equal warmth. I am also considering getting some flip-flops to replace my Crocs, even though I hate flip flops. I also need to replace the shitty hat I bought in Idyllwild after losing my previous one.  One of my peeps from Massachusetts should send me a dope-ass Boston Red Sox trucker hat. 🙂 Preferably the flat bill type because it shades better and I can squeeze my sunglasses under them too.

I also called and talked with my wife. It was sort of heartbreaking to hear her voice. I discussed some resupply needs with her and asked her to order me a smaller hip belt for my ULA Circuit since I’m now losing weight quickly.
burn area
I was in sort of a somber mood this morning when leaving Big Bear Lake. I didn’t see any other hikers the entire time I was in town. I was feeling lonely as I slung my pack that was weighed down with 5+ days of food and 3 liters of water. I then lumbered over to Big 5 Sporting Goods to buy a fuel canister. After leaving, I hitchhiked back to the trailhead and got a ride within 15 minutes or so from a wonderful gentleman named Tom. Tom and I had a good conversation and he taught me about the mine and the dry lake that is east of Big Bear City. I got a view of this man destroyed area while walking a Jeep road around a burn area closure.

I hiked the rest of the day without seeing anybody, other than the weed gang who are a group of four guys that are often stoned.

I put in an obligatory 10.5 miles which on paper seems respectable for a nearo day. I stopped way too frequently to take pictures of birds and Cedar trees and a forest floor covered with juniper berries and pine cones.

At 4pm, I setup camp at a nice spot. It’s much earlier than I normally stop, but I was tired, lonely, frustrated with human beings and their impact on this planet, and to top it off I was burdened with a heavy pack. All I wanted to do was to sit and eat as much food as I could to lighten my pack, and then read my book for a bit.

Anyway, I’ll try to do close to 20 miles each day until I get to Wrightwood. There, I am most likely taking a zero day where I may auction off a kidney to lighten my base weight even more. 
camp site
One odd note. As I was walking up that Jeep road today, a group of Jeeps drove by. In a couple of Jeeps were the same folks I was chatting with in Big Bear Lake the previous night. It’s such a small world we live in. If that’s true, why does it take so long to just walk to Canada?

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