I’m so tired from pushing to 20 miles today that I just brushed my teeth in my tent and opted to swallow the toothpaste. I hit snooze until 5:00am this morning and was on the trail at 6:04am. I walked until the sun was almost completely set tonight, some time around 8pm.
The day was so long it almost feels like two. Getting up early was a great move and something I hope to do from here on in as the miles are so much easier without the heat. I arrived at my first water source four miles in, a water tank at Mike’s place. There were a few other hikers there including Flipper who didn’t manage to get to the water last night and had to survive on the splash I gave him the night before. When I went to sign the trail register the woman at the property offered to cook me pancakes but I was keen to push on and make myself a coffee up on the trail.
Last night I heard a whole group of hikers go by at midnight. I saw them all this morning at Mike’s and they were stoked to hear about the offer of pancakes. They had started from Warner Springs at 5pm and made it further than I did in an entire day!
There were more majestic mountain views and wildlife on the trail today including the snake pictured above who was in no hurry to get out of my way, even when I went to prod it with my hiking pole. It finally moved when I threw a stone at it. It was another hot day but my second water source was only 10 miles away so I planned to get there as quickly as possibly and then wait out the heat. Below you can see the trail cut along the mountain on the left.
There were even more hikers at the Tule Spring where a huge water tank fed water down to a small hose. I spent three hours laying in the shade, drinking, eating and even sleeping a little. I had to perform surgery on a new blister on my small toe but all in all the feet are doing well.
While I was hiking today I thought about all of the comments I’ve been receiving on this blog. It’s honestly one of the best parts of my day when I receive them. Even though I don’t always respond I absolutely love reading them and it makes me feel like I’m not alone out here. They definitely keep me motivated!
After a hearty lunch of spam and cheese I was ready for the last 7 miles. I was determined to get close enough to the next water cache but also find a nice place to camp. Luckily I was able to do both with just enough daylight to set up my tent. The sky looked a lot like it did this morning when I woke up and started hiking… beautiful!
I haven’t looked ahead to tomorrow but because Paradise Cafe is closed on Tuesdays (bummer) I’ll need enough water to go 15 miles. I’m used to carrying way too much so it shouldn’t be a problem. That’s about all I have in me this evening, off to sleep!