06 Apr Day 9 – A Day in Paradise
Hiked 21.2 miles today, At mile 156
Here is a sample of my diet and calorie burn. I started the hike weighing 167 pounds. I think I’ll need to eat more than this to maintain weight.
Ate a breakfast of 2 pop tarts and a cup of cold coffee then hiked nearly 11 miles to a water tank and picnic table where I had peanut butter on a sandwich thin. Then I hiked 6.5 miles to the highway, caught a ride to the Paradise Cafe where I really ate. There, I made up for the two previous tiny meals by having a turkey burger, fries, and 2 beers. After Paradise, I hiked another 4 miles after which I had a small pack of tuna and two tortillas.
I have now lost all of the hiker buddies that I previously made. I may have the pleasant surprise of unexpectedly seeing them down the trail. Today, I met a nice assortment of trail angels, section hikers, thru-hikers, and day hikers. Rob, a section hiker hitched a ride together to a popular spot with hikers, the Paradise Cafe. Tiki joined us. We got a table and as other hikers streamed in, they joined us. Hi to “Out” and “Back”! Comment on this blog post if you have trouble emailing me. John and Mogli from Alabama showed up a little later. Mogli wears a tie while hiking. Finally Spicy Charlie arrived. All of us enjoyed each other’s company at Paradise.
Up next is Idyllwild, the trail detour, and Mt San Jacinto.
The most important event today wasn’t on the trail. It was my wedding anniversary. I’ve been married to Sandra for 31 awesome years and not only do I love and miss her, but she is the best and most understanding person you will ever meet. Understanding enough to abide my 5 – 6 month absence.
I’m in my sleeping bag. The stars are overhead. Mountains are visible in the distance as I lay in an open landscape of boulders. At this elevation, about 5200 feet, there are nearby groves of pines. It also promises to be colder than the desert i have recently slept in.
Here are some photo highlights.
Still sleeping campers on the PCT
First encounter of this type of cactus since climbing the San Felipe ridge after Scissors Crossing.
Underground Cistern. Rain runs off a cement collection area into the Cistern
Water Cache – There is a registration book to record date, name, and how much you took. I recorded that I took none here.
Perfect beach sand with some decorative boulders and plant. It could be a high priced tiki bar.
Trailside flowers. These grew on only one hill. I never saw them again.
Trail looks like it could crumble into this gorge.
Boulders populate area near where I am camping tonight.
Enormous pine cone. Nice to see real trees again.