16.1 miles hiked
In the morning I wake up and pack up. Yesterday afternoon I had stopped by the hostel and talked to Sarge, who apparently had finished with Star Wars. I guess it was the 40th anniversary. Still, questionable business decision? Just sayin’. He said he could get me to the trail in the morning if I showed up at 8:30, works for me. I also discussed some trail stuff with him: he said this year there’s three types of people on trail: Real Hikertrash (me, though I don’t usually look like one, just act like one), Entitled Hikertrash (usually couples, yuppies, or internationals, this is a category that’s been growing recently) and some other name I forgot that was actually funny, a new category. These are idiots who mess up the trail, poop/pee near water sources or on trail, leave trash everywhere, lotta drugs, start fires they don’t put out.
“They used to wear neckties, but everyone figured out who they were, so most of them stopped wearing them,” he explains. This part I am not so sure about.
I head over to the coffee place first to caffeinate before hitting the trail. I get to the hostel a little late, 8:33. A guy I saw there yesterday who seems more Necktie than Hikertrash says I just missed them. Ok, I was 3 minutes late, but srsly? He says I should wait for Sarge to come back, but I decide to go to a cafe to get more coffee and figure out what to do.
More coffee, updating my blog which I didn’t do during the zero, bathroom many times, my abdomen is doing it’s monthly pit-in-the-stomach/twisting-like-wringing-ALL-the-fluid-out-of-a-sponge pain thing, I am bleeding a lot today. I mention this because it is super making me not want to hike, just crawl up into the fetal position and pass out for a bit, start over tomorrow.
I try to hitch on Rt 18 unsuccessfully, call a trail angel Papa Smurf. He tells me he’s going to the trail intersection 9 miles ahead. F it, I’m in pain. “Sounds great, that’s where I want to go!” Add it to my tab. Also yesterday I came up with a superawesome idea which will make my thru hike more like 2800 miles that I will share details about later and therefore #myhikeislongerandmoreepicthanyours so, blow me!
A guy pulls up and asks am I the one going to the PCT. On Van Dusen Rd? Yeah, he says. Ok.
I’m chatting to him and while he is so nice he seeme really not to know a lot about the trail which is really odd, because I thought Papa Smurf hosted hikers at his place like, every night. Then I get an incoming call, it’s Papa Smurf. Huh? I look at the driver, who is driving and introduced himself by his real name.
“Um, are you Papa Smurf?”
“No,” he says, “but I’ve heard of him.”
I call the real Papa Smurf back and apologize, explaining the situation. In the meantime I am so busy figuring this out and explaining to both sides that I don’t even realize we aren’t at the Van Dusen trailhead, we’re at the Rt 18 one. Ok, PCT, joke’s on me, keeping me honest. I give the driver Papa Smurf’s number because he wants to be more involved in trail angeling. He actually wrote an opinion piece to the local paper telling people they should pick up PCT hikers because we are such interesting people with interesting stories, I kid you not. So, you’re welcome, PCT.
I’m still in pain but at this point there’s nothing to be done for it. I walk. At the real Van Dusen Rd I make two hikertrash wraps with the GF soft tortillas [!] I found at the grocery store. Actually they are not hikertrash at all, but gourmet: lunch is a lemon pepper tuna/sun dried tomato/ avocado wrap. Dessert is a nut-free vegan nutella wrap with another avocado and freeze dried bananas. Both are fucking delicious. More miles, even some uphill, I smash them actually.
I look at Guthook, trying to figure out if I should try for Deep Creek tomorrow night or early the next morning. I am not sure where to stop. It’s Memorial Day weekend, tons of people out, even at all the dirt road crossings I see someone. There’s a big campsite with privy 3.5 miles up the trail from my current location where there is an unmarked but kinda interesting campsite with an amazing view off the trail. At least a mile from a dirt road either direction, shouldn’t see anyone other than hikers pass here. Do I want to deal with maybe rowdy people in order to have a nice privy and maybe some trail magic? Nahhhh. Also I decide this gives me option of either the hot springs at night or early the next morning. I’ve been in early morning before, it wasn’t crazy then.
Ok, I set up a cowboy, eat a protein bar and last of my cherries, and bundle up. A little cold here but a great view!