Day 24 – Pacific Crest Trail (32 miles)
Today was interesting, with plans to do a 32 mile section across the Majave Desert.
I got up early and started heading down to the desert floor. I wanted to make my way to Hiker Town, the third and last Trail Angle, as quickly as possible to avoid the mid day heat.
The first three hours were uneventful, but highly productive. I managed to make 12 miles in this time, leaving the hills and trees behind for the flat, barren valley floor.
The last few miles to Hiker Town I met a hiker that is a professional ranger. We walked together and chatted for the hour into the only sanctury from the heat around.
I waited in the shade at Hiker Town for the afternoon.
Square Pants, Karma, Wolf and I set out for the 17 mile waterless strech at 4pm. The sun was still hot but beginning to cool off for the day, which made walking this section much more pleasant.
It is one of the most notorious sections of the trail as we walked on top of the LA aqueduct for this entire segment. So much water under our feet, yet we go thirsty.
It started out fun. We walked, we talked, we joked. We also found a helium mylar Happy Birthday balloon. So the afternoon became Karma’s birthday, with the balloon floating behind her pack. (Side note: I’ve picked up 3 of these along the trail. Please make sure you dispose of them correctly)
As day turned into night, we continued walking. There was a bet on what time our lights would be needed, which I proclaimed to be going the whole way without.
We kept on going, and at about 10pm I checked our location. We missed a turn! We were just over 0.5 miles from the trail. We studied the map to see if we could cut North and meet up with it again, but decided against it in the dark. We trudged the way back to the junction that we missed.
I guess we should have used our lights.
Back on track, and meeting a couple of others also night hiking, we continued the last couple of miles to water.
Upon arriving I got my sleeping bag out and went straight to bed. I was extremely tired and it was well past my bed time.