Sunday, October 31, 2010

Warner springs! 110 to go. Soaking tomorrow.

Friday, October 29, 2010

In for the night near Anza. 151 miles to go. Thanks to Pete Lee for the lodging and hospitality and MC, BR, and Kevin for the welcome wagon

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Sobo again, and it feels so good
Back on the PCT, headed South to Mexico. Things I've missed about about SoCal which I saw today (in order):
- A deer hunting policeman who told us the PCT is dangerous and we should go home
- No water for 17 miles
- A tennis ball-sized tarantula
- A baby rattler
- Thunderstorm for the last 11 miles of the day

The last 11 miles were especially brutal. The thunderstorm was at its peak as we walked under powerlines. We crossed train tracks, and promptly lost the trail. Even after bushwacking to the next set of train tracks, we still couldn't find the trail. The sun set as we were looking, so we dug out our headlamps. We went down a connecting road, and wandered onto private property copiously covered with "no trespassing" signs. And a rusty tractor parked in a cactus patch. And a trailer home with lights on. And a pile of old auto tires in a rusting shed frame. So, not the best.

We turned off our headlamps so that it would be harder to aim shotguns at us. We followed the barbed wire fence until we figured our way out of private property.
Fortunately, we found the trail, and followed it through a tunnel under another set of train tracks. We finally got to the interstate, which the PCT crosses by running underneath through a box culvert (i.e. a pitch black tunnel with no apparent exit).

We worked up the courage to go through the tunnel and emerge under a road paralleling I-15. We walked up the unlit road and notice 4 parked cars, engines off. We noticed the first car had someone in the drivers seat--creepy. As we kept walking, the cars turned on their engines and manouvered around us. One u-turned abruptly to face us, shined high beams at us, then parked again. Gangles thinks we walked through a multiparty drug deal. I thought it was more likely to be a prostitution thing.

We skedaddled to the safety of the nearby McDonald's, then checked in to the Best Western. Zero tomorrow for Gangles' birthday. Back on the trail Thursday.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

BR and Moosie finish the PCT!

Currently in Portland, OR and driving down the coast back to San Diego. What a journey - on October 11th our trail family (9 of us and the stories we could tell about the times we had together... much love to all of them) reached the border and finished the trail. Thanks to some serious trail magic from Lady LNT, we got picked up right at the Manning Park Lodge and driven back into the US. It's been a whirlwind since. Moosie and I have officially finished our thru-hikes, Mexico to Canada. Congratulations to Swiss Miss, Bigfoot and Grinder who finished with us. T-Bone, Steiner and Gangles now go south to Devil's Punchbowl and start the southern 400 mile stretch to finish theirs, which i'm sure will go fast and smooth. Hee-Haw and Bouie's spirit monkey joined us for the state of Washington and it was awesome to have him along.

Too many thoughts and not enough processing yet - ecstatic to be done and incredibly sad to be finished. Thanks to everyone and congratulations as well to all the thru-hikers who finished this year. Can't wait to see everyone at kick-off next year ;)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Arrived in Canada this morning. In Bellingham, WA tonight, Seattle tomorrow

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Under 200mi to go!

Plan: Arrive in Manning Park, BC (Canada) on October 11th.

To do:  ~200 miles to hike between now and then.

We are stopped in the bustling metropolis of Baring, WA, at the Dinsmores' Hiker Heaven.  It is a little slice of heaven indeed.  We have had laundry, hot showers, and we are now watching "Fried Green Tomatoes", as a hormone-balancing chaser to "Terminator 2".  If the boys don't carefully monitor the VCR, I may slip in "Ghost".

The weather has been incredible, blue skies and no clouds.  The views have been phenomenal--Sierras-like, with granitic towers, deep glacial lakes and snow fields.  Gangles and I took a 30 minute detour today, atop a ski lift operation booth.  Possibly the best place I've shared a candy bar ever. 

And, at Deception Lakes, we took our probable last swim on this section of PCT.   Swiss Miss called it the "gangliest swim video ever".  I think the average BMI of video participants is in the mid-teens.  We'll post the video later.  Stay tuned. 

Anyhow, spirits are high, as we are so close to the border.  Our next and last stop is Stehekin, WA.