21 Apr Day 25 – Leaving the high mountains for the high desert
Hiked 17.3 miles today.At mile 444.3.
Last night while sleeping I had sore feet. They really ached! It’s strange because they only hurt a little and on occasion while I hiked. I’ve had the same experience earlier in the hike, but with my knees and legs. No problem during the day, but at night, another story. I think it is like when your fingers get cold. They don’t really start hurting until you start warming them. As long as my feet are being used they are okay, but when resting they begin to hurt.
As for physical ailments, I’ve been lucky. All blisters and sore toes went away. The shin splint went away before it really got started. The only thing that continues for now is the sore left shoulder. I think it might really be neck related so I remembered the Ergonomics training we had at AT&T. Yes, you AT&T folks, Corporate Compliance Training can really pay off. 🙂 These were stretching exercises you can do at your desk. Chin tuck, roll head in circular motion CW, then CCW, and most importantly, shoulder rolls. Let’s see whether this regimen helps my sore left shoulder.
I figured out that if I average 18.2 miles per day, then I could reach Kennedy Meadows by May 4th, plenty of time to get back for Maura’s graduation. I’m also coming back for the birth of a grandchild, but I can’t predict that date. My plan is to return to the trail later in May. It isn’t wise to enter the Sierras any sooner, it would only be a slog through snow and cold.
Okay, here is the hike. After seeing Mario early in the day, I didn’t see anyone else on the trail. It’s amazing how you don’t see others, but when you reach a town there are 30 or so people. I’m sharing the the KOA campground in Acton tonight with about 30 other thru-hikers.
It was a clear and warmer day, in fact as I descended to desert it became quite hot. Here are the early last remains of clouds hugging distant mountains.
Growing through the asphalt in the driveway of the Ranger Station, would you believe? A Poodle Dog Bush. They’ve closed parts of the PCT due to this plant. I stopped at the Ranger Station to use the picnic table for lunch. They were also accepting $1 donations for soft drinks. I had a Coke and a Mountain Dew. You might think the P in PCT is for Pepsi, but you would be wrong. All I see being handed out on the trail is Cokes. Not one Pepsi so far. Guess the C in PCT is for Coke.
Vasquez Rocks. Tomorrow I’ll get close to these.
Flowers on the trail.