After the hideous road walk yesterday my feet were swollen and my ankle blisters had returned. I knew it was going to take 22 miles before I could put my feet up and rest! Pac Man and I woke around 5am, had coffee and oatmeal then hit the trail around 7:15am.
The pressure of my blisters stung with each step to the point where I had to sit everything down and perform typical surgery on those suckers! There was so much liquid that came out but as a result each footstep following the surgery stung like bejesus!!
After two ice creams, three packets of chips, a Gatorade and a Snickers bar I completely passed out. At one point I woke up because the sun had crept up on me and I was beginning to get dehydrated. Pac Man describes the scene as me waking up with drool and dirt stuck to one cheek and a leaf stuck to the other, while I searched around blindly for my water bladder then drunk from the tube like I was suckling at a teet. It’s important to look good out here, what can I say!
We still had 11 miles to walk to the Saufley’s and left KOA at 6:15pm when the sun had finally cooled off. It was a climb straight out. My blisters had dried up a little but the bottoms of my feet felt raw from wearing sandals over 80 miles. We reached Hwy 14 when it was dark and had a spooky walk through the tunnel underneath. I was so glad I wasn’t on my own!
Once through the tunnel we entered an amazing canyon with boulders towering above us. It was super spooky in the dark, especially after Pac Man thought he saw a cougar. I had a feeling of anxiety and dread and made sure Pac Man didn’t get too far ahead of me in the dark. It was the longest 3 miles of my life and just as we reached the safety of the road Pac Man saw the cougar’s eyes again and an outline as it finally scampered off. I literally had chills. We arrived at the Saufley’s around 11pm after enjoying a Jagermeister and cold beer down the last one mile road stretch. We even turned down a hitch because I was so determined to make it the whole way on foot. In my next post I’ll describe what Hiker Heaven is like, I never want to leave!