March 17, Day 7
PCT Mile 109.5, Warner Springs
I woke up about 5 this morning. I drank a bit of water because I was very parched. I tore down camp and hit the trail at 6:15. At 6:45, I stopped to watch the sunrise, and made a birthday video for my good friend Molli.
At this point I was in the northern half of the San Felipe Hills and the vegetation changed from that of cactus to scrub oak and chapparell. This area of the mountain range must get more rain.
After hiking 5 miles, I can to a water cache at 91.2. I had just enough water to make it to Barrel Springs, but not enough to cook any food, and certainly not enough to be fully hydrated. So I hiked the small side trail down to the cache. There was a good supply, So I took two liters and made breakfast.
I really needed to eat. I never rely on water caches so last night I ate jerky and dehydrated Mango. Not exactly filling. This morning I had some trail mix and jerky before heading out. Again, not exactly a full meal. At the water cache I made oatmeal with nido and carnation instant breakfast. Nido is a brand of dehydrated milk that is actually pretty good. Unlike a lot of dehydrated milks it doesn’t have that sour after taste.
Its amazing what a warm meal and being hydrated will do for a person. I felt completely revived.
After eating I rested in there in the shade for about 45 minutes. The cases of water worked great to elevate my feet and allow some of the swelling to go down.
I had spoken to Lets Party the night before. She was about a day behind because her pups feet were bothering her. They were taking things slow. I told her I would let her know if there was water at the cache. She was thrilled there was water. Fortunately for her the weather had changed a little when she started San Felipe Hills. It wasnt nearly as hot as the day before, and there was a nice breeze. This is a far cry from the gauntlet I went through just 24 hours before.
She also let me know Connor had caught up to her. He had hitched from Mt Laguna to Julian to swap out some gear. He also informed her he planned to stay at a hotel that was 8 dollars a night. So was born his trail name “8 dollar”. However upon further conversation later, his trail name was changed to “Freebie”. The details of why will remain a mystery to my readers, at least until the statue of limitations is up.
About 3:30 this afternoon I rolled into Barrel Springs. On the water report it was stated water was abundant, but tasted like sulphur.
I filtered two liters, and sure enough, it tasted like sulphur. The taste wasn’t overpowering, but it gave me heartburn like nobodies business. I shall refrain from drinking sulphur water in the future if at all possible.
After a short break and reviewing my maps, I decided I would hike the remaining distance to Warner Springs. It was an additional 8 miles, but I was feeling pretty good. Also it was early enough that I would arrive just after dark.
The next 8 miles were pretty easy, lots of open planes with small hills. It was beautiful.
I arrived in Warner Springs around 7:30, made camp, and checked in with home.
I passed the 100 mile mark today! I also hiked my first 23 mile day, ever. A very good day.