Day 6: Trail Magic

Date: April 15, 2017
Miles: 56 – 71

“When I think about that sunrise that I woke up to that morning, I just feel like I got as close to nowhere as I could get, and found out that it was more of a place than anywhere I’ve been in a long time.” ~ Hank Green

I got up a little early today to watch the sun come up. I can’t remember the last time I did that.

A trail angel named Half Slow showed up with a bag of apples for breakfast.  My first trail magic! It was sooooo good. Half Slow is from Vietnam and he hiked the PCT last year.

We walked about a mile to a water source so we could fill up for the 11 or so mile waterless stretch ahead. Henrik from Denmark joined us this morning and he just stood staring at the algae tinged American stream muttering, ‘Oh, this is so gross. Denmark is nothing like this. Look at all the bacteria.”  We tried to make him feel better by pointing out that this was way better than the horse trough we filtered from yesterday, but he wasn’t buying it. America, the land of the free, the brave, and the disappointingly un-European water.

A little while later we pulled off of the trail to let a horse go by and ended up talking to its rider for a few minutes. Turns out he’s from Rainier, Oregon!  Small world.

We hiked on in the heat until we reached another water source at the Rodriguez fire tank.

A bunch of people had gathered there to fill up and chill out until the sun went down a bit, including Kris Kringle, a 23 year old who is carrying two belts, a taser, a survival book, hairspray, a giant baseball bat shaped flashlight, waterproofing spray and a five pound bag of wet wipes…all “just in case”. He said he has been killing snakes for food and filtering his water through a sock.  I’m not sure how much of that I believe, but it doesn’t matter. It’s entertaining.

A few Jeep vehicles pulled up and some people got out with beer and food to give to the hikers, and offered to take our garbage out.  More trail magic! Thanks Jeep people!

We hiked another 5 miles after that and made camp. Tomorrow we descend into the San Felipe Valley and the heat of the desert. 

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