Installment #9 - May 8, 1999 - Back To Work!
I've spent a week soaking and tending my blisters, and I think I'm ready to head back to the trail. I took a short hike yesterday with my pack loaded for the PCT and did OK. My feet are a little tender, but the blisters are almost gone. I'll be taking a pair of running shoes AND a pair of hiking boots, and leaving my sandals behind. [Sandals?]
I now have identical replacements for my dead stove and my lost flashlight. I've added lots more blister stuff to my first aid kit, including some foot cream which Rita bought for me and has been applying to my feet all week. [I don't imagine that's ALL she's been applying for the past week.]
Tonight we will go to a family Mother's Day gathering, then I'll get a ride to the San Jose Greyhound depot to catch the 11:15 bus to Los Angeles, then on to Palm Springs (I'm hoping I can convince the driver to let me off at the trail and not take me all the way to Palm Springs). I should be back on the trail at San Gorgonio Pass by 11AM tomorrow (Sunday) morning.
It has been great to be home. Rita has cooked some great food, we've seen 3 movies, I've visited with family & friends, and I've caught up on all my mail. But fall is coming and 24 or 25 hundred miles of the trail remain to be hiked - lots more adventures are waiting.
One adventure I've been forewarned about is hearing and possibly seeing grizzly bears, lions, apes, and other unexpected and dangerous animals along the trail just south of Big Bear City. I understand that some hikers have done an about face and left the trail after seeing, for example, a lion sitting on a nearby hill. I've been told that a movie is being made in the area, and the animals which appear in the movie are being quartered near the PCT. Although they are caged, apparently the cages are not always obvious.
My next report should be from Big Bear City about 13 May.
Since the last Installment, Allen's first set of color slides arrived - lots of good shots! As I mentioned earlier, the way we're handling these is by linking them in with the Installments where they were taken. I've gone back through the Installments and added links to all the new photos. But if you just want to see the pretty pictures, here they are:
Added from scans of Allen's slides on May 8:
The stark rented cabin at Morena Village
Looking back from the PCT on Lake Morena
Anza Borrego Desert from lookout just south of Mount Laguna
Allen in front of the Mount Laguna Post Office
A typical scenic view from the PCT
A thirty-inch traveling companion
A better shot of Meadow Ed
Snow on the trail provides for a little treachery